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Quilting for Profit | All About Quilting Online Info

Once you have created some quilts you may want to starting selling them. There are a variety of different ways to do this including going to arts and craft festivals in your city, flea markets on even setting up your website. You will need to have a good stock built up and that will take some time. You can look on the internet for the local arts and crafts festival, their cost, times and locations. The local flea market is a good place to set up a booth but then again you will need to contact the local vendors to find out their costs for a booth, times they are open and any special requirements they may have for bringing in your own tables and such. You want to have a way to display your quilts such as a rack as well as some bags to put them in, and change for cash payers. And you will probably need a way to take credit cards as well.

If you don’t want to attend arts and crafts festivals or hang out a the flea market all weekend you might want to consider getting a website and selling your products online. You create your own website using one of the free services. Just remember you will need to sign up for a merchants account with either Google pay or Paypal to process credit cards. However, you will not get a website with your own domain name. Some will allow you to just use their shopping cart feature by using links from your own domain website. You can always start out with a free site and when you get going you can upgrade to your own domain with a shopping cart feature built in so that you can control all aspects of your business. Remember you have to have a shipping cost module added to your cart as well as collect sales taxes. The rate of sales tax is determined by which state you live in.

Finally, you will need to consider how much you are going to charge for your quilting creations. There are a variety of different strategies to consider when you want to sell you items including the cost of materials, the time spent on the project and the size of the piece and of course, the uniqueness of it as well. Good luck!



Preparing your quilt for a professional longarm quilter


Please take note of the following important reminders about your quilt top so it will be a beautiful finished product and you can keep your cost down.

If you plan to bring the back of the quilt to the top for binding you need to be sure to add let the quilter know and add a note to the quilt top.

All quilts will be returned trimmed even with the quilt top unless the customer requests to have the quilt returned untrimmed.

Thoroughly press your quilt top and backing. Backing seam should be pressed open. If piecing the backing, please make sure that all the pieces are the same length. In other words, straighten the edges. Trim any stray threads. Trailing threads can get caught between layers and show. After pressing, fold neatly and allow enough space in box to allow for batting if you are not providing the batting. If you are shipping the batting and it is a packaged batting, please open your package of batting and refold to fit box with room to spare. PLEASE.

Is there an up and down to your quilt top or backing? With a safety pin, pin a piece of paper to the top edge to identify it.

It is very important that your quilt top and backing are square. Please do not use sheets for backing fabric as they can cause problems for a quilting machine. Note that according to your personal preference you may, or may not want to select backing fabric that varies in color dramatically from the top. During long arm machine quilting, top and bottom thread is chosen to match your quilt top. If your top fabric is light and your backing is dark, you’ll see contrasting thread on the back of your quilt. Some people like this look; some do not; so just be aware of this. We will do what you want.

If your top has no borders, stay-stitch 1/4″ in all the way around the edge. This keeps the seams from “popping” and prevents stretching when attaching it to the canvas on the rollers. PLEASE NO SERGER STITCHING.

Your batting and backing fabric must be at least 8 inches larger than your quilt top. For example, if your top is 60 X 80 then your batting and backing must be at least 68 X 88. If you send a package batting it is not necessary to trim it, we will trim during quilting and return any excess with the quilt.

If your quilt does not meet our specifications listed above, they will be corrected for an additional charge.


Please send Warm and Natural (90″), Warm and White (90″ and king), Hobbs Heirloom 80/20 cotton/poly (96″ and 120″) and Quilter’s Dream cotton/poly. You may supply the batting, but only from the brands listed above. Please do not send Mountain Mist or store brand cotton battings.


Gift Ideas for Quilters on Your List

If you have a quilter on your holiday gift giving list this year, consider yourself lucky. Christmas gifts for quilters are abundant and fit in any budget.

Give a gift card or certificate to the quilter’s favorite craft, hobby, or fabric store. The gift card can be used for whatever quilting supplies he or she needs.

For those who believe giving a gift card is taking the easy way out, there are plenty of other Christmas gifts for quilters.

How about a nice pair of scissors? Good scissors are a tool that every quilter needs. When you shop for scissors as your Christmas gift for the quilter on your list, you will see just how many kinds of scissors there are on the market. Take time to read the packaging carefully. You wouldn’t want to give your quilter a pair of embroidery thread snips instead of a sturdy pair of fabric cutting scissors!

Books and magazines about quilting styles and techniques make great Christmas gifts for quilters. It does not matter how many your quilting friend already has, books and magazines that show new techniques or trends are always a welcomed gift. Quilters often find inspiration for new color choices, quilting patterns and project ideas in books and magazines.

Give the gift of an Internet quilting club membership. Many online quilting clubs give their subscribers great quilting tips and offer one-on-one assistance for members who email them questions. Some websites even feature regular interviews with quilting pros or offer video streams which show demonstrations of various quilting techniques!

Make a quilt yourself. Even if you’re not a quilter, making a quilt (or quilted wall hanging, throw, or even a potholder) will show your quilting friend that you recognize his or her love for quilting. Use your imagination and see what you can quilt. If you’re not a quilter, give yourself plenty of time for your first quilting project.

Give the gift of a quilted look in accessories for the home or office. Even if you yourself are not a quilter, there are plenty of unique Christmas gifts for quilters you can create yourself. Decoupage a picture frame to look like a quilt. Or, cover a frame, desk calendar and inexpensive business card holder in coordinating fabrics. A fabric printed or woven with a quilt pattern would be an extra nice touch!

Give a quilter’s gift basket. Search for a nice basket that will match your friend’s decor. Include several quilting products in it. Good choices are various strengths of quilting thread, a rotary cutter and cutting surface, scissors, scraps or fabric remnants, and quilting needles (if your friend quilts by hand; machine needles if your friend quilts by machine). Don’t forget to add a copy of your favorite quilt pattern or a book full of patterns! If you’re giving the gift of a quilting web club membership, it would be nice to “wrap” your gift in a small gift basket.

If your quilting friend likes to craft with vintage fabrics, take a trip to your area thrift store to pick up a few samples. Keep an open mind. When shopping in thrift stores, you’ll rarely run across a bolt of fabric. Your vintage fabrics may be recycled old ties, old blouses or old t-shirts!

Any of these gifts would be appreciated and enjoyed by the quilter on your holiday gift giving list. Wrap them in fabric or tie a nice fabric bow on top of whichever gift you decide to give for a great finishing touch!


Quilting – New Trends with 100% Die Cut Quilt and Fabric Kits

A developing market niche in the quilting world is 100% die cut quilt kits. Although precut kits have been sold for a number of years, die cut kits take the cutting a step further. Precut kits provide the quilter larger pieces of fabric which need to be cut into smaller quilt pieces. 100% die cut kits provide all pieces, borders, and binding cut and ready to sew. When searching online or in stores for precut quilt kits, take note of which type of “precut” kit you are purchasing.

Precut kits with appropriate lengths of multiple fabrics have advantages and disadvantages. They do provide the quilter with a matched fabric selection for a particular pattern. The pattern may or may not be included with the kit. Also, the cutting process is easier because the pieces of fabric are smaller and easier to manipulate. However, cutting precision is dependent on the quilter’s abilities and the effectiveness of the pattern directions. If an error is made in cutting, the quilter may not have enough fabric in that particular color to correct the error. Precut kits are an advantage because they save the quilter time.

The newer, 100% die cut quilt kits also have advantages and disadvantages. First, the kits contain all the pieces, borders, backing and binding cut and ready to sew with detailed “visual” instructions. No more calculating where to make the next rotary cut and how to cut that triangle! Next, the die cutting process creates precision cut pieces which stitch together easily for that perfect block. The blocks fit together nicely for a quality stitched quilt project. Also, the 100% die cut kit saves the quilter time and money since the quilter does not have to be concerned about obtaining a pattern, locating and choosing fabrics, accounting for extra fabric, and cutting the pieces, borders, and bindings. This leaves more time and energy for the fun of piecing together the quilt project. However, the quilter’s selection is limited to the variety of kits available for purchase. Finally, if you use a long arm quilting service, they will certainly notice and appreciate your work. An accurately sewn quilt project leads to quality final quilting. In the end, it’s a winning situation. 100% die cut kits make high quality quilts, wall hangings, and table runners possible for all types of quilters.

Who should consider 100% die cut quilt and fabric kits? All quilters! Sometimes it’s fun to skip the cutting and start stitching. There are many great quilts, wall hangings, and table runners made each year by quilters using traditional methods. These creations inspire and encourage all of us in our great love of quilting. However, quilters are now learning about these newer style 100% die cut kits and understanding the advantages. Beginning quilters like them because it allows them to focus and learn how to stitch the quilt project. They feel successful immediately due to the quality of their die cut piecing. This inspires and propels them further with their quilting hobby. Experienced quilters find the time savings useful, still feel challenged, and appreciate the quality. 100% die cut kits are a gift to quilters who are physically unable to cut a quilt project. Finally, quilters who struggle matching fabrics for a pattern truly appreciate relieving their headache with a die cut quilt/fabric kit.

How do you choose a precut quilt or fabric kit? What should you be looking for? How do you know what you are getting in the kit? These are all great questions. First, look at the package for information about the name of the fabric line and manufacturer. Is the fabric 100% cotton quilting fabric? Then, verify the material in the kit is the same material as in the picture of the quilt project. Next, look at the contents list for the kit to ensure all the pieces for the quilt project are included in the kit. Does the kit include the borders? Binding? Backing? Make sure you know what you are paying for and won’t need more fabric to complete the project. Last, check the size of the project and colors to ensure it will be perfect for its intended purpose.

Now is a good time to consider a precut kit. Whether choosing an easy quilt kit or a challenging one, the 100% die cut kits are an exciting addition to the quilt world. They give quilters another choice for making their next beautiful quilt creation.


Quilting for Beginners: How to Quilt Beautiful Heirlooms your Family Will Enjoy for Generations

Did you know that more than 6 million beginner quilters decided to learn how to quilt during the last 3 years?

That brings the total number of quilters to about 27 million – that’s just in the United States. And most of those quilters, just like me, are presented with limited drawing and painting abilities.

Quilting is a fantastic way to create a work of art with fabric. It is well understood that the “painting” will not be perfect, and that colors and patterns are limited to what’s available in a quilt shop or hand dyed fabric.

Here Are My Top Tips to Help You Get Started in Making Quilts for You, Your Children & Grandchildren:

Combine blocks of fabric to create your quilts. By changing the shapes of the pieces within a block such as substituting triangles for squares and switching light fabric for dark fabric you can create a whole new quilt design. And, you will still keep the construction of your quilt the same.
Simple is the name of the game for many quilters. As a beginning quilter, focus on learning and practicing basic quilt making techniques that you will need to develop your craft.
Use one or two shapes for all of the quilt patches. This makes it easy to sew a quilt together. Squares and triangles offer many advantages in terms of simplicity.
Remember, interesting variations in quilt blocks are achieved just by where you place the fabrics in your quilt block, in addition to how each patch is divided in the quilt block pattern.

8 Easy Quilting Patterns to Get You Started

Quilt Pattern 1: A simple nine-patch quilt block can be used as an example of how different a block can look just by changing the placement of colors within the nine parts of one block. Using only two colors of fabric in alternating squares creates a checkerboard design.

Quilt Pattern 2: With the same nine-patch of two colors of fabric, using only square patches in each block, you can create a quilt pattern that looks like a big X.

Quilt Patterns 3 and 4: Want more of a challenge? Take some of the square patches in the blocks and divide them in half from corner to corner (commonly called half-square triangles in the quilting world), and create an Ohio Star or Pinwheel quilt block.

Quilt Patterns 5,6,7 and 8: Change the placement of your fabrics once again, and your block turns into a May Basket Quilt Block, a Maple Leaf Quilt Block, a Bow Tie block, or even a series of diamonds, called Slanted Diamonds.

Increase the number of colors in your quilt, and your design changes once again. And, by using only two basic shapes (squares and triangles) you can create all of your design changes.

Quilts are amazing works of art that have survived the test of time, and will continue to do so as long as there is fabric and quilting imagination.

Happy Quilting!


Create Your Own Handmade Patchwork Quilt
Learn to quilt a handmade patchwork quilt. By following simple quilt patterns you are able to create your individual masterpiece.

Learn To Quilt – Tips For Beginners

Sewing by hand, or with a needle and thread is the traditional technique used to piece together quilt blocks when making your own handmade patchwork quilt. Keep in mind to take the smallest size needle that you will be able to easily work with. Be certain that you are using particular quilting thread. Quilting thread is thicker, more durable and does not tangle. Cut a section of quilting thread approximately 2 feet long. Thread the needle plus position a single knot in the end of the thread with a little tail to avert unraveling. Do not double the thread. Sew with one single strand. Even if you use a sewing machine you must practice these stitches.

Beginning Your Handmade Patchwork Quilt

Lay the two quilt portions that you are connecting together, with right sides facing each other. Pin them using three pins. Set one pin in each of the top two corners, and the third pin in the middle of the piece. Begin at one corner and poke the needle through both layers of material then bring it up through the fabric roughly 1/8th of an inch down the seam line. Carry out one backstitch to keep the end secure, and then continue this in and out stitching. This is a running stitch, also termed a piecing stitch. It requires practice to get a straight line. You may draw a line in pencil on the other side of the fabric if this helps. When you have reached the other corner make a backstitch in reverse and make a 90-degree turn into the seam allowance. Make 2 stitches and cut the thread. A lot of quilters do not knot the ends of their thread, as they feel knots rub and wear out the material faster.


An additional stitch that beginners should gain knowledge of to make their handmade patchwork quilt is the applique stitch. In applique blocks, a fabric motif is cut out, layered and stitched onto the background of a different material. This way of stitching the layers together has to be practically invisible to the eye. The applique stitch must leave a little visible dot of a stitch. To begin, start with a quilting needle and knotted quilting thread in a color that blends with the applique motif. Set up the design by basting the raw edges under. Pressing with the tip of an iron initially will help. Next baste the fabric motif onto the background fabric in the desired position.
Now it is finally time to applique your handmade patchwork quilt. Start off by putting the needle under the background fabric. Push the needle up through the background material as well as the edge of the applique motif. Pull the thread through both layers. Now place the needle right next to where the thread comes up, however only on the background fabric. Make an1/8th inch stitch through the background material and bring it up at the edge of the applique motif. Continue this stitch all around the material motif, finishing under the background material on the wrong side. Knot then trim.

Hand sewing would seem like a very time consuming procedure. As soon as you form a rhythm, it goes much more rapidly. A handmade patchwork quilt is frequently cherished over machine-stitched creations. A handmade patchwork quilt will last forever.


Looking For Simple Quilt Patterns for Projects?

Quilting is a skill that anyone can learn. It is smart to start with simple quilt patterns that are easy to understand and doesn’t take too much time to complete a project. These little quilting projects can be used as gifts for most all occasions because they are so beautiful.

if you are looking for some free patterns that are easy to make, you can do a straightforward search on google or any other search engine. Just type into the search bar something like ’free quilt patterns’ and you’ll probably find something you can use. There are dozens of places to get free or cheap patterns that will be easy to start with.

Here are one or two ideas that little projects can be turned into something beautiful as well as helpful. Always use your imagination and you can come up with ideas of your own that you’ll be pleased with.

1. A Potholder is a helpful present

A potholder is a great gift when selecting a block from simple quilt patterns to use as the top. I love to use a 6 and a half in. to 7 and a half inch block for this project. You would just duvet and bind the potholder like a regular cover with one or two exceptions. Make efforts to use 100% cotton for your covering thread. If you use invisible thread, it’ll melt when handling hot pans. You may also want to use insulated batting.

2. Give a set of Place mats

I made a set of four place mats and 4 coasters for my parents last year and they loved them! You can use the easiest of simple quilt patterns for this one – a checkerboard. What is great about this idea is that you will get plenty of practice binding quilts.

3. Youngsters love Tote Bags

Make it a market tote and give it to folks who need to break themselves of using plastic bags at the corner store. A quilt block can be employed as decoration. If you make the bag out of novelty fabric such as Sponge Bob or Barbie, you can give it to your favorite pre-teen as a library bag. Once you start putting these ideas into projects using simple quilt patterns you will become a quilting pro in a brief short time with much pleasure and enjoyment.

4. A Cover for Recliner Headrests

I found out about this idea by mistake. I made my mom a mini duvet version of the larger quilt I had given her as a gift. She used it as a cover for her recliner’s headrest. It looks great. So much so that my dad wanted one for the next year. You will need to make a quilt approximately sixteen by nineteen inches. If the planned recipient has two recliners, be certain to make two.

5. A lovely table topper

Does anyone you know have those accent tables? Make them a table topper. Just ensure that it matches the decor of the room. You could also make a table runner with little cover blocks. Anyone would be proud to display such a nice table runner!

Now you have 5 great homemade present concepts where you can use your simple quilt patterns, why not start on your quilting project today?


Learn to Quilt: Discover Top Tools of the Quilter’s Trade

When I first started quilting I was just learning how to sew as well. It took a while to figure out which were the tools, also called notions, that I used the most. To help you on your journey to becoming a quilter I have created a list of the tools you will use the most:

1. Rotary Cutting Supplies. This includes a rotary cutter, acrylic rulers, and a cutting mat. These tools are made for precise cutting. Quilter’s worldwide wouldn’t think of starting a quilting project without them. You’ll find that the more accurately you cut your quilt pieces, the more accurately your quilt top is sewn together. Olfa is an excellent brand, and is the leader in the quilting community.

2. A Decent Steam Iron. You can’t start a quilting project without one. Now, you can buy the really expensive Rowenta professional iron, or, you can go to Walmart or Target and buy their steam iron. Both will get the job done. I’ve learned from experience that they both last about the same amount of time, will both do a decent job, but one is a lot less expensive to replace. I highly recommend using spring water in your irons—tap water can lead to hard water stains on your quilt top, and most manufactures say that you shouldn’t use distilled water.

3. A Good Seam Ripper. Most quilters have two or three of them on hand at any given time. Dritz makes a variety of excellent seam rippers. You’ll find they have everything from seam rippers with magnifying glasses to ergonomic seam rippers for those of us quilters who rip out stitches on a regular basis.

4. Spring Loaded Scissors and Shears. These scissors and shears are spring loaded to prevent hand fatigue while cutting repetitively. Quilting, and sewing for that matter, involves a lot of cutting. I have a pair of blunt tipped, which work really well for cutting threads, and a pair of sharp tip, which I like to use for cutting appliqué pieces. I don’t know many quilters who don’t own a pair of these. Fiskars, in this instance, is my brand of choice.

5. ¼ Inch Foot. A quarter inch foot for your sewing machine will get you going toward an accurate ¼ inch seam allowance. Almost all quilt patterns instruct you to use an accurate quarter inch. Many sewing machines come with these feet. However, if you bought a simple hobby machine, you’ll most likely need to purchase one. I would like to recommend a brand, but in this case, there are so many brands for different types of machines that you’ll want to check with your local machine dealership to buy the right one. Don’t worry, they aren’t expensive, but they’re definitely necessary. You may even find them at your local quilt shop.

You’ll discover quilting can be an adventure. Anyone with the proper directions can create an heirloom quilt that will stand the test of time.


The Advantages Of Purchasing Pre-Cut Quilt Squares

Don’t you get inspired when browsing through blogs and seeing all these beautiful quilted creations that everybody seems to be making in their spare time? What is holding you back from starting your next quilted pillow, quilted wall hanging or even quilted comforter? Well, the larger the project the more likely is it the time or the lack of time that is preventing you from bringing your creative ideas to life.

Make life easy by using pre-cut quilt squares. These quilt squares are readily available with online fabric retailers nowadays and considering the time you will save by purchasing pre-cut squares, they are very affordable. For example, to make a queen size comforter with five inch squares you will need 420 five inch squares. Even using a rotary cutter, how much time do you think you would be spending on cutting these 420 squares? Now think how much time you will save by purchasing them pre-cut. A lot! What a smart way to start your next quilted project.

In addition to the obvious time savings you will actually save money buying your fabric pre-cut. Who has not end up with a lot of waste and scraps when purchasing each necessary fabric design by the yard? Your fabric cuts may also not be quiet as precise which also waste fabric as well as making it difficult for you to complete your quilted creation perfectly.

One major challenge that most of us face is the selection of fabric designs and colors that complement each other flawlessly. Not only is it time consuming but can be very frustrating when trying to choose a handful of complementary designs and colors from a thousands of choices. Purchasing Quilt Square sets provides you with a collection of designs and colors that have been properly coordinated by the manufacturers’ designers and design studios. Furthermore, it can be very inspiring looking at the beautiful pre-cut fabric collections as many times they includes designs and colors that you may have not thought of combining. Your next quilted project is sure to come out perfect.

Quilt Squares come in almost every size. It’s really depends on your quilt design what size squares you should procure. Quilt squares range in size anywhere from 1 inch to as large as 10 inches, and come in every size in between. The most popular sizes are four, five, and six and half inches square. Any of these sizes or a combination of these sizes will get you started immediately.

If you are unsure about what size squares to purchase you are better off going with larger squares. You can always cut them smaller or you can sew your squares with a larger seam allowance to get it just the perfect size. That speaks to the versatility of pre-cut quilt squares. You may think that just because you have a square you have to complete your quilted project with all squares. By simply folding a quilt square diagonally you will get a perfect triangle. Or fold it in half and you have a rectangle. The options are limitless so let your imagination take its course.


Gees Bend Quilts – Inspiration

There are a lot of Gees Bend Quilts products out these days. There are quilt kits. There are books. There were even postage stamps.

But in this mass commercialization, have we forgotten what these quilts were really about? So, how can you can truly bring their spirit into your quilting? Here are three tips:

Tip 1 – They Used What They Had
There were no quilt shops where these ladies lived. When you look at their fabric choices, it is simply because these were scrap quilts in their most basic form – scraps.

The Gees Bend quilts used denim taken from worn clothes. They used corduroy scraps because their quilting bee had a contract to make corduroy shams for Sears.

They did not select material because they were interesting fabric choices. They selected material because it was free.

I mean, when’s the last time you saw a quilt pattern that used the corduroy fabric? I’ve never seen it.

How to put this into use for your life – Think of making a true scrap quilt. I’m not talking about a stash quilt. I’m talking about a quilt from fabric from clothes you are about to throw away or give to charity.

This can be an on-going project. One of mine is a denim quilt. Every time I wear out a pair of jeans, I cut it up and put it one of my gallon plastic bags for use in an upcoming rag quilt. It may take a while, but I’m sure I’ll appreciate the quilt even more.

Tip 2 – They Broke the Pattern
These women prided themselves on breaking patterns. They opened themselves up to experimentation and in that process, they made art.

It’s tempting to follow a pattern to the letter. I mean, I have a tendency to do it even with scrap quilts. I’ll want to make the quilt exactly like what’s on the cover because that’s what drew me to the quilt. I’m guessing that you may be the same way.

The Gee’s Bend Quilts ladies took a different approach – they intentionally took a pattern and made it so that it did not look like the pattern in the book or on the cover. They made their own twist on a traditional pattern.

How to put this into use for your life – Experiment with breaking a pattern. You could have a designated ugly quilt (one of my favorite techniques for getting through a quilt where you are just experimenting.)

You don’t have to copy something exactly. You don’t have to use the sizes given. If a quilt calls for 2 and a half inch strips, you can use 2 inch strips or 3 inch strips. The patterns are only a guide. Strive to make your quilts your own by breaking the pattern.

Tip 3 – They belonged to a network of quilters
For the most part, quilting was woven into the community of theses ladies’ lives. They had a community.

It is hard to be out here on your own. If you don’t have a quilt guild near you, check out some of the on line groups. Consider starting a blog and commenting on other quilting blogs.

I don’t belong to a guild, but I do have a quilting buddy who I visit for a monthly quilting trip. We set goals, hold each other accountable and get each other’s opinions on quilts. It is good to have someone you can bounce ideas off of.

So, you can use the spirit of the Gees Bend Quilts in your own projects. Consider using up what you have, breaking the pattern and expanding your quilting network. Be on your way to making your quilts works of art.


Free Quilt Patterns Reviews
Have you ever wanted to try one of those free quilt patterns, but not sure if they were worth your time? This is the page for you. Here you’ll find tips on using the patterns and how well they work in the realm of scrappy if you’re having a use-up-your-stash challenge.

Patches and Pinwheels
If you look closely at this pattern, you will see that it is basically a sixteen patch alternated with a pinwheel block.

The motion of the quilt can make the pinwheels disappear; you are left with the appearance of a sixteen patch set on point.

Bricks and Stepping Stones
If you want a quilt in a hurry, this is the one to do. Once you get this pattern down, you will want to go do it again and again. It comes together very easily and is a serious stash buster.


Fast and Easy Quilting Techniques
Today’s quilting techniques allow easier piecing and completing of quilts. The main ones are below:

Strip Quilting – Strip quilting is a quilting technique that is essential to creating quilts quickly. Strip piecing is what it sounds like – cutting strips and then piecing or sewing them together with a quarter inch seam.

Once these strip sets are created, they are then sub-cut. Sometimes they are sub-cut into squares. Sometimes they are sub-cut using specialty rulers or other quilting tools such as a triangle tool. Using this technique is a great way for beginner quilters.

Scrap Quilting – Ah, scrap quilting is making a comeback. It is pretty simple – using up every scrap you have. Sometimes you’ll have fabric left over after a project or, um, like me you just fall in love with fabric. By making scrap quilts, you can use up fabric to the last inch.

Rag Quilting – Have you ever seem those warm and fuzzy quilts with the edges that look so cuddly? That’s rag quilting and it is pretty easy to do. The edges of the seems that you see are actually the exposed frayed seams, that are cut and then washed and dried.

Machine Quilting – To finish your quilt top, you can use machine quilting. The quilting tools needed for this are minimal – a quilting foot and invisible thread would work well.

Mock Binding – Binding is a technique that can stop folks in their tracks. If you view a quilt as a picture, the quilt top is the picture. Borders are the mats and the binding is the frame. Mock binding is when you use your backing as the binding.

You just need to make sure your binding is a reaches about an inch from the edge of your quilt and batting. Then you fold the edge of the backing so that its edge is to the edge of the quilt. Fold over again. Pin. Sew down.

Try all of these techniques. Depending on the need and intent for the quilt is what will decide which one you’ll choose.

One thing that I can say is that these quilting techniques have opened up the art to lots of new people who have never tried it before. Hey, maybe even you.


Quilt in a Day Log Cabin Pattern Book

Make a Quilt in a Day Log Cabin Pattern by Eleanor Burns is a great book for absolute beginners and a good reference book for quilters in general. It oozes with step-by-step instructions and lots of pictures.

You may be thinking, yeah, but there’s one quilt pattern. But, you can work off this one pattern for years if you had to.

I’ve made lap quilts, baby quilts and mini quilts from this one pattern. The book contains the fabric requirements for different sizes from a wall hanging up to king size. Plus, there are layouts galore.

For the absolute beginner, you’ll get a list of supplies you’ll need for your very first strip quilting project. At first glance, the list may seem intimidating, but this supply list will last you a long time.

The actual strip quilting instructions are detailed with a picture to demonstrate every single step.

Most folks I know are fine when it comes to finishing a quilt top. They get scared, however, at the actual quilting and binding or finishing the quilt.

The Make a Quilt in a Day Log Cabin Pattern book details instructions on how to finish a quilt two different ways. You can either machine quilt or quick turn and tie. Both have step-by-step instructions.

The book does not cover hand stitching. But with a title called quilt in a day, you can kind of expect that.

Other projects included in the book are a pillow sham and a tote bag. Yeah! These are basic instructions that you can use for other quilt patterns. See why I love this book?

When it comes to machine quilting, most quilt books for beginners only mention stitching in the ditch (stitching in the seam of your blocks to give it an outline effect). This book suggests quilting lines. The difference in batting choices are also discussed.

I was able to move on to individual quilting patterns from this foundation because the book was short enough to not be overwhelmed, but detailed enough to tell you everything that you need.

Alas, all is not perfect.

There is not an emphasis on pressing your blocks as you are piecing. Pressing makes a difference. I was surprised to discover this after I came back to the book to make a mini-quilt. Another nitpick is that the binding strips are not cut on the bias.

And, uh, a first-time quilter would not care about either one of those things. I used this book to make my first quilt and even without bias-cut binding strips and blocks unpressed until the end, it turned out fine.

Bottom line, this book can get you help you finish your very first quilt totally on your own. It is a book you can not pry from my quilting library.


Quilt Book Review – Quiltmaker’s Gift

Technically, this is a pattern quilt book but I like to look at it as eye candy. It’s by Joanne Larsen Line and the sub title is 19 traditional patterns for a new generation of generous quiltmakers.

Throughout the book are pictures from the children’s book The Quiltmaker’s Gift.

The book is gorgeous. Gorgeous I tell you. Even if the actual patterns scare me.

There are a lot of itty bitty pieces with this one. As the subtitle says, these are traditional patterns before the age of strip piecing and firmly in the land of templates.

So, why would I recommend this quilt book?

Because you eventually are going to become an intermediate quilter. But you won’t leave the safety of your strip piecing home until you salivate enough times over a Storm at Sea pattern and say not only I want to do that, but I’m willing to take the time to do that. (Full disclosure: I am so not there yet, but it is on my quilting bucket list).

When you’re ready (and after looking through this book for a couple of months you will be ready) you will be able to dive in.

Why This Book is Superfantastic (TM Dad)

You get cutting instructions for different sizes. Usually the book contains instructions for a lap size and queen. The book also contains backing layouts if you have to piece your backing from standard width fabric.

Oh, did I mention the eye candy? Y’all, we are artists and the pictures have you thinking that it’s not so hard to do all of those projects really.

Also, they’ve got different layouts and tips on fabric selection for each quilt.

So, after scaring you, can you do the quilts in this book? Yes. They are just going to take a longer time. You could also cut down on all the pieces by using a tool such as the easy angle (my favorite) for your half square triangles. The reference section of the book mentions using triangle paper. That is another choice.

Things I Love

I adore their section on color in the back and just the book’s overall encouragement to explore your creativity.

The setting section is good as are the finishing sections. Love the binding pictures. I also like that they have suggested reading list and a list of professional machine quilters.

Bottom Line

Yep, another quilt book that has made it through my annual book purge. It’s worth it just for the pattern names – Peace and Plenty – End of the Day – Next Door Neighbor.

Working through it you will learn easy squares, working with templates and paper piecing. Good book. Inspiring and a happy place in my quilting library.

Quilt Design – 3 Methods
Ever wanted to learn about quilt design, but thought it was either too difficult? Good news. Chances are that you can design quilts using what you have at home. Think I’m kidding? Let’s check out three ways of designing your own quilts.

1. Graph Paper
Yes. Graph paper. Please don’t have flashbacks to elementary school math class. Plain ole graph paper is excellent for drafting patterns graph paper is excellent for drafting patterns , especially if you’re going simple with just squares and triangles.

The most important thing to remember is the scale. I personally use the scale of one square for one inch. Along with crayons, it’s a nice relaxing way to work out some quilt designs to see if they will really work together.

If you plan to use fabric that feature patterns, you can still use this method. Usually the pattern will “read” as a certain color. That’s the color you use on the graph paper. Because you are using simple shapes, it will be easy to see what works and what doesn’t.

2. Mini Quilts
Still not comfortable with graph paper? Break out the fabric. This is especially helpful because you get a mini quilt in the process.

Making a mini quilt of your project will help take the intimidation factor down with any new techniques and fabric choices, also.

This method best works when you’ve got a strip-quilting pattern. If you have to cut all the strips at 2.5 inches, simply cut them at 1.5 inches and follow the directions.

By the time you make the big quilt, you’ve got all the patterns and the colors worked out without wasting a lot of fabric. And you’ve got a cute decoration for the package if you’re giving the quilt away.

Quilt Design Software
And then there is the design software. There are many pros to using this method. You get to play with the colors and the dimensions of your quilt with a click of a button. Some programs even have fabric libraries you can download and use. Your program may even calculate the exact amount of fabric you need.

There are also cons to using a computer program. Programs can be expensive. There could be a learning curve if you are not comfortable with computers. And have you seen patterns made with those programs? They’re like cut out 100 2.5 inch squares when you could easily use strip quilting to cut down on the time.

Still. Honestly, this type of software is on my Christmas list…

So, there you have it – three ways to satisfy those quilt design urgings. Try it. The next time you give a quilt as a gift you can be proud in knowing that you made it from the design all the way through quilting.


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