And now I've done it - and it works! I can manipulate and paint the fabric in much the same way I would if I used a paint brush.
Here's is a look at my progress. This is my whole cloth odyssey that I've been working on for a few weeks. Eventually, I will post pictures of the finished piece.
Here's how it works.
Place the fabric in an embroidery hoop (an ordinary hoop will do). Use a good stabilizer on the back and use a free motion type presser foot. I have the amazing Bernina 820 with the BSR - technical talk for Bernina Stitch Regulator - which means even though you are sewing in crazy directions at varying speeds, you will still have nice even stitches (regulated stitches). In theory anyway.
After my first few trys at this, I feared there might be a bit of false advertising in there... but eventually, it does work! Gotta stick with it... though.
And this is a picture of my hand embroidery "cast on" stitched flower. I love this one!
This wall hanging is a true odyssey for me - a mash up of hand and machine techniques... and not sure where it will all end.
In the meantime, I'm linking up to Freshly Pieced's Wednesday WIP. Stop by to see what's happening in the quilt and sewing world. http://www.freshlypieced.com/