Some Basics You Need to Know If You Want to Learn Quilting

Quilting Facts

Quilting goes back to ancient times. It is a form of needlework that decoratively binds a layer of padding between two fabric layers. Today, many women and some men use machine stitching instead of the tedious hand sewing.

For quick and easy quilted projects many craft stores have prequilted fabrics that you can purchase. They are available by the yard and are ready to be sewn as soon as you get them home. You can also select coordinated fabrics and create a one-of-a-kind quilt.

Quilting always requires two layers of fabric with padding, also called batting in between the two layers. Select a batting that is compatible with the outer fabric layers and make sure the thickness is compatible with the type of quilt you are making. At the craft supply store you will be able to see the different types of batting available. Batting generally is available in polyester, cotton and wool. They all come in different thickness from thin to lofty (thick). Purchase a package big enough for your project. Packages of batting can be found in a range of bed sizes from crib to king. You might also have the option of purchasing batting by the yard.

Quilting Basics

When you are at the craft supply store take a look around at the quilting accessories that are available to make your projects easier. Handy items to consider purchasing are fabric-marking pencils and wash-away pens, quilting templates, quilting attachments for sewing machines, quilting hoops and frames.

You have your choice on machine quilting or hand quilting your fabric. Take into consideration the type of project, the degree of difficulty and the amount of time you are willing to invest into the project.

Choosing the right quilting motif is also necessary to make your project stand out. These are usually called quilting motifs and range from simple lines to more intricate scallops and flower motifs. You can also outline the figures or quilt blocks from your project’s top.

Always draw your quilting motif on the right side of the top fabric before assembling the layers. Because your stitching and the loft of the batting will make the final quilted fabric be slightly smaller than the original size. This allows you to make sure you have quilted enough fabric to completely finish the quilt.

A Few Important Tips

Always lay batting over wrong side of bottom fabric layers; then lay top fabric layer over batting.
If quilting with a sewing machine, use a clear embroidery foot or a quilting foot for best results.
When quilting bulky, textured or double-stretch knits, use a light-weight jersey for the bottom fabric. For a less bulky effect, use a thin batting or omit batting altogether.

There are endless possibilities to accent your pieced tops by quilting. Purchase additional books and research online for more tips, tricks and ideas on how to quilt beautifully.