Wednesday, 8 April 2015

The Essentials: Getting started on the path to quilting

When you begin the journey of quilting it can both be a wonderful and overwhelming experience.

Getting to know the different types of fabrics, notions and accessories will not happen overnight rather treat it like a lifelong learning experience that will continue to intrigue you for many years.

Here is a quick guide to the essentials of quilting for anyone wanting to give it a whirl.

Sewing Machine
Any basic sewing machine will suffice when starting out, it is important to get a quarter - inch foot to make it easier to sew accurate quarter-inch seams. A walking foot is also essential when machine quilting your project, as it feed the quilt top, batting and backing fabric through with ease.

I started sewing with a basic Brother Machine although recently I have upgraded to a Janome Skyline S5


Charm Packs
Usually the most economic pre cuts these 5x5" fabric squares are great for beginner quilts and getting a full variety of colours and patterns. Most charm packs have 42 squares in a pack. 

Fat Quarters 
These cuts of fabric are usually 50cm x 50cm squares that often come in bundles with a wide range of fabric colour and designs. 

Layer Cakes
Can be commonly described as giant charm squares these cakes provide 42 10x10" fabric squares. Also great for knocking up quick quilt tops and also easy for beginners.

Jelly Rolls/Junior Jelly Rolls
This pre cut has a variety of prints from a collection which is rolled together and the fabric is cut length-wise (2.5" x 42") strips. 

Junior Jelly Rolls usually are half the amount of fabric and give a smaller range of colours and patterns. 


I recommend using a good quality thread like Guttermans, it is best to stock up on white as it the most versatile for any project.

It is important to have an array of needles on hand both sewing machine and embroidery needles (handy for handstiching the binding)

Quality pins are a must have in any quilter's toolbox to hold the fabric together securely

Curved safety pins
Easier than using straight safety pins into the 'quilt sandwich'. 
Other essential items

Having a good quality rotary cutter (remember to always have a spare blade handy), large cutting mat and an assortment of rulers ensures that fabric cutting is a breeze. Remember to check twice and cut once!

To see a great range of fabric check out the Quilt Modern website!

Happy Quilting!!

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