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Quilting help

(18 Posts)
Joolly2 Thu 30-Mar-17 23:30:19

I am attempting to make a small quilt. I have never done this before but all is going well. I am nearly ready to do the quilting bit, I have a walking foot (I was advised to get one) but what do I need to buy to make the nice patterns. I put quilt template into Google and just got plastic shapes come up. I could just do straight lines but thought something a little bit more fancy would be nice. Can anyone help please?

grauduroi Fri 31-Mar-17 07:53:09

You've bassically got two options: marking the fabric and then following your pattern or free motion where you stich a pattern as you go. If you search 'free motion quilting' lots of tutorials come up and you can see how it is done - although it can take lots of practise to become good. 'Stippling' is the easiest pattern to learn and looks good when you get the hang of it.

Marking your fabric with the patterns takes time but is kinda easier as you have something to follow, although trying to stay on the lines and keep the stitches even is another matter! Watch some tutorials and have a go on some scrap material and see which method works for you. I tend to use both as it depends on the project and the amount of quilting I want to do smile

lljkk Fri 31-Mar-17 08:12:44

Marking the fabric with pencil may work, it tends to wash off ok.

I free-hand quilt using a darning foot. Google "pentagraph" to see possible patterns. I am lazy so do a lot of leaves, hearts, bumble bees & butterflies. But I have managed motorbikes, too. I guess my quilting can look wonky, but then everyone knows a human made the quilt, not a factory made it. I only use the walking foot for binding edges or quilting in the ditch (straight lines, basically); my machine doesn't allow flexible patterns with a walking foot.

it's good to sign and date your quilt (may be a hand stitch job).

Joolly2 Fri 31-Mar-17 08:43:52

Graud, Iljkk, thank you both for your help. When I have woken up properly I will look at youtube. I didn't think of that. I also love the idea of signing and dating it, I will definitely do that. There is a lot more to quilting than I first thought. I have really enjoyed doing it but think it'should maybe time to look for some classes.

GoodyGoodyGumdrops Sun 02-Apr-17 11:57:42

I'd suggest sticking to straight lines or wide curves for the first time you use a walking foot. Get the hang of it first. Tight curves can be very difficult with a wf. I love my wf, even use it for ordinary sewing.

But of course you don't have to quilt exclusively in one style. You can vary straight lines with curves, tight or wide, machine quilting with hand quilting. You can even combine quilting with tying. Oh the freedom there is wonderful!

Joolly2 Mon 03-Apr-17 22:54:18

Goody, thanks for that.I am going to have a go in the morning. I'll definitely have a trial run first.

LittleGreyMeow Mon 03-Apr-17 23:02:00

Can we have a picture grin

I love quilting find it very therputic, but I do all my quilting by "quilting in the ditch" but I love triangles (chevrons) squares and strips in gradient colours to create what I would think of as more modern quilts.

I love my sizzix, which creates perfect shapes (I hate the cutting bit unless it's strips) but it's great for shapes and pieces which I don't do so often, as each one is cut perfectly I have found my sizzix the best investment, although a hefty one smile

I always think if your going to spend hours and hours making quilts or any craft really you may as well spend the money on it so that you look at it at the end admire your handiwork and beautiful quality.

Have you practised binding yet? I have some videos I can dig out if that helps, hand sewing the back has always given me the best results - I'm actually gutted I hand did the backs on some of my first ones smile

Joolly2 Wed 05-Apr-17 23:10:25

LittleGrey - I have yet to start the quilting, life keeps getting in the way. I would have tried hand sewing a few years ago but these days my fingers get quite painful when trying to sew. My quilt is a bit of a riot of colours chosen by my granddaughter. Not what I would have chosen. I used a charm pack as my cutting skills are not great.
I have looked at Sizzix and something else Accu? I think if I get into quilting I may invest in something like this.
I am going to try stitch in the ditch as this might be easier for me. I haven't got as far thinking about the binding yet, I am more focused on the stitching at the moment. If all goes well I will think about a photo, although after looking at how professional some of the crafts on here look I may chicken out. Tomorrow afternoon is set aside for sewing.

LittleGreyMeow Thu 06-Apr-17 01:04:00

I started by just doing a quilt of 5" squares, my first is much treasured and very pretty.

Something like this

But just 5" squares, once I'd finished quilting in the ditch, I went diagonally through the squares to give it a bit more of a quilty look.

It's a great way to practise all the techniques and if you go slowly then your get very good results smile it's a good way of practising sewing in the ditch and getting a feel for how it all comes together, the ones that involve pieces if you have never done it before may be tricky, but if your brave and have cut out the pieces already then I would just go for it! I'd love to see a picture but understand it can be daunting smile

Seem allowances being perfect and pressing not ironing all the seem allowances is very very important, i hate that bit but it does give the best result

When you come to sandwiching it, I'd suggest getting some temporary fabric spray smile pinning is a nightmare, where as spray sticks it all together, it doesn't shift and it washes out on the first wash. Always lay flat, and roll from the top to the middle, them spray and flatten in pieces for the best result.

I wish you so much luck! I've not done any for a while have become obsessed with crocheting animals recently smile

If you have any questions I'm happy to help smile

Joolly2 Thu 06-Apr-17 16:49:12

Still no sewing again today. I put the walking foot on my machine and discovered it is a cheap copy and not a real Janome one. I have had to order the real one from Janome, I should have realised that'she why it was so cheap.
Little Grey thank you so much for all your help. I jumped in with the charm pack and chopped it into triangles and then spent a happy evening making patterns with them. My husband was a bit bemused when I started sewing them back together 'didn't you just cut them up, what was the point of that?' I don't think he is going to be very supportive lol.

lljkk Thu 06-Apr-17 17:18:09

Ah, that is one of many reasons why I am (told I am) a complete quilting failure. I can't stand the thought of carving up lots of new fabric... I mostly used 2nd hand & scavenged fabric (& thread I found in charity shops). Most other quilters are horrified. Still, so expensive & wasteful to buy everything new.

I'm selling most of my quilting stuff this year, probably. I realised this hobby was not for me. I can't make the fabric fit together perfectly, either, hence why rejection from one quilting group.

(They made hideous design & colours but stitch & measurement perfect quilts)

LittleGreyMeow Thu 06-Apr-17 17:37:31

Your so welcome OP, I'm glad it helped! Sorry to hear about your foot

I actually didn't get on very well with mine, I only use it when sewing lines, with a guide.

Don't give up lilkik, sad to hear the quilting military has rejected you! Squares are the way forward until the seems are perfect and if they are not, well who cares really smile or really pretty fabric just with quilted lines on it - I brought the most beautiful fabric and matched it together to be king sized and just did lines of one inches it's by far my favourite and much better than some of the ones you see smile each to their own but I love new fabric, as I really carefully colour match but I admire your dedication to buying scraps and let's face it that is what quilts are actually supposed to be made from smile

My love started when we went into my grannies loft and found one she had made when she was girl, all paper pieces with the original paper, hand sewn! she had cut the pieces out of receipts and was fascinating to read its now in a museum smile she must have spent hours making it

Crafts are supposed to be fun smile and cherished

LittleGreyMeow Thu 06-Apr-17 17:40:03

Did you use a triangle template?

As your get "ears" if not and not perfect squares, so your need to trim smile I love triangles as you can make chevrons smile my cats have them in their pet beds smile

GoodyGoodyGumdrops Thu 06-Apr-17 17:55:11

Llijkk all that means is that you have not found the right groups. TBH I'm outraged (In a first world problem way wink) at their attitude to reusing fabric - that's practically the raison d'être of patchworkng!

In my group there is a grandmother who saves all her sons' and grandsons' PJs, boxers, office shirts etc, and makes the most awesome quilts from them using only squares and rectangles.

I'm in the middle of a quilt made entirely from charity shop finds. I'm also in the middle of a quilt made from new fabrics that I bought purely because they were irresistible and i wanted to try a particular technique. (I'm in the middle of quite a few quilts blush)

And as for the quality of the stitching! That's another of the joys of quilting - that it does not need to be perfect to get a delightful result.

Joolly2 Thu 06-Apr-17 18:45:01

Everyone on here is so kind and encouraging. I will brave a photo or two. It is full of safety pins and creased from being in my bag but this is what I have done so far.

GoodyGoodyGumdrops Thu 06-Apr-17 20:21:34

Lovely! I like the way that at first it looks like a random selection of triangle squares, but then the methodical arrangement begins to appear and the apparently random colours reveal themselves to be the same patterns.

LittleGreyMeow Thu 06-Apr-17 22:58:38

Jolly that's amazing!!!

LittleGreyMeow Thu 06-Apr-17 23:00:22

And goody I'm with you, the quilting military can bugger off smile

Quilting is a labour of love and imperfection is part of the beauty of it all!

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