First I taped this cardboard thing to it to prevent me from scratching it with all of the safety pins. I had some big binder clips to clamp down the backing, but it turned out the desktop was too thick, so I just used tape and pins to keep things in place.
I also spray starched the fabric for the first time ever. I used a recipe from Diane Gaudynski's book, which used about 1/2tsp cornstarch per 2cups of water. I really can't tell a different from adding the starch. Maybe I didn't spray it enough or something.
Once I finished the pinning I got started on a little quilting. I free motion stitched around all the cats, leaving a really wide margin (about 1/8"). I've discovered that when you stitch in the ditch around something, it pops much less than if you leave a little space when you stitch around it.
Then I snapped on my walking foot to get the seams between each of the squares. However, I noticed after stitching two lines that I'm having trouble moving the quilt forward. There were multiple spots where the stitches got super compact because the feed dogs weren't moving the quilt forward like they should. I'm not sure what to do about this, I would love tips. Presser foot pressure was set to 1 (lowest possible) and feed dogs were up. And I had the walking foot on for Pete's sake! A little frustrating.
But, since I want this one to be fluffy, it should take no time at all to finish quilting since I'm goin to leave lots of open space. I was realizing while quilting that the batik I bought for the backing has a nice silky texture, an added bonus since this will be a lap quilt.