Post # 1
Hi Bees! I’ve been wanting to try my hand at quilting for a while now. I know sewing basics- things like making a curtain or pillow and hemming/repairing- but have never been great with clothing and clothing patterns. I have a sewing machine but it’s at least 7-8 years old and very tempermental.
We just found out a few of our friends are expecting this fall and I thought this might be a great way for me to try out quilting without overwhelming myself. So I want to make at least one of them a quilt for her baby (due Sept.)- the other friend is moving shortly to be closer to her family so I don’t think I can make her one before then. Obviously it’s too early to know what sex the baby’s are, so the quilt would be gender neutral….
Anyone make quilts or baby quilts? my grat-grandmother used to be an avid quilter and when I asked my grandmom to send me some of her stuff all she sent was super complicated patterns and notes- def. not what I would call starting material!
So I need to know 1) is quilting super hard? 2) What do I need (on a budget) 3)Any reading or tutorials you can recommend? 4) Any patterns or pictures for examples?
Here’s some I have pinned that seem pretty simple, but I really don’t know the mechanics of it so they may not be as simple as I think. I like more modern designs much more than the traditional starburst/country type quilts:
Post # 3
@BeckyS0: my mom quilts. It’s REALLY expensive. You have to buy all cotton fabric, and it’s often more expensive. A baby quilt costs her about $75-$100 in materials alone.
Post # 4
Unless you have quilting sewing machine (big arm and tray to do it) I’d suggest skipping the heavy duty stuff like your images. Instead I’d suggest either a rag quilt with flannel or cotton.. super easy or a bit more complicated appliqué type design. (look up rag quilt if interested).
For an appliqué quilt, Kind of like this http://littlebirdiesecrets.blogspot.com/2010/03/butterfly-baby-quilt.html I’d pick out two coordinating fabrics and pin them together between some nice batting. I like warm and natural. Then I’d take and cute pretty shapes (butterflies in this case) in various fabrics and place them all over the quilt with a blanket stitch (Your machine should be able to do this). Once the blanket had enough various appliqués that it didnt seem like the pieces would come apart I’d finish off the edges with a binding (you can buy premade pack of satin blanket binding or make your own, again just look for a tutorial). I wouldn’t worry about the actual quilting part. Here is a bit more information if you really want to go for it though… http://littlebirdiesecrets.blogspot.com/2010/10/how-to-free-motion-quilt-stipple.html. You’d need a machine that allows you to attach a free motion foot to and again unless you have a specfic quilting machine the clearance between the arm and base is going to make it really hard.
Oh one more thing. Sometimes you can find fabric that is already designed to just be quilted and you just need to add the backing and batting then sew by follow the design lines. Something like that might be an easy option. Joann’s does have a few designs.
And for the record, not all rag quilts have to be boring…. Give me a second and ill attach a photo of one I made Darling Husband.
Post # 5
@BeckyS0: FMIL quilts – to do it well is time consuming and expensive. If you’re new, I’d suggest going with a rag quilt OR a quilt where you don’t have to piece anything, you’re really just quilting over a pre-printed picture (I think they’re usually called Quilt Panels)
The really hard part about quilting is the actual QUILTING part (where you add the extra stitches through all the layers etc to give it the neat pattern) the ones you posted actually look quite complicated.
Post # 6
You might think about starting off with making them a baby blanket rather than a quilt – much more manageable for a sewing novice.
Post # 7
@NLbride: I know the fabric is expensive, but more than likely I’d be buying the materials all at different times, so that’s not a biggie. I meant more that I don’t have alot of extra $$ for any expensive tools I might need.
Post # 8
Quilting is expensive. You need rulers and a mat and a cutting blade at the very least. Those can add up to well over $100. Each of my quilts run easily $50-100 when you add up all the fabric and the batting. Also they take a long time to do. If you are set on doing it go to etsy and look for a pattern. Most of them come with detailed instructions. Also I would pick up a quilting for beginners book because most patterns will not explain binding or top quilting.
Post # 9
@lovemygsp: See- that’s what I had no idea about- that I would need a totally separate machine for quilting! I’m pretty sure my great grandma did it by hand but she died when I was a pre-teen so I could be wrong. The applique could be nice- I’ve seen a few like that I liked. The rag and squared quilts just aren’t my style at all so that’s out. But your quilt is very nice!
@MsGinkgo: quilt panels sound like an even better way to start! I like that idea! I wasn’t sure if with the designs I posted you could do a different top quilting pattern. I did notice the top quilting was pretty complicated, but I guess I figured I’d skip that part and do something simpler. Probably not the best idea considering I don’t know what I’m doing!
@KCKnd2: I was thinking about trying a blanket instead… I guess I could kind of partially quilt it? Like do a hybrid between a baby blanket and a quilt maybe with a quilted applique? Would that be horribly ugly/complicated?
@princessbelle: I’ve got a sewing cutting mat and special scissors I use only for fabric. But I def. don’t have $$ for a whole new machine- and I could swing some rulers unless they are crazy expensive. I know it will take a long time- I am specifically looking for something to take up my extra time spent sitting in front of the TV. I remember my great grandma would work on the same quilt for nearly a year, piecing everything together… Do you have a book to recommend? I think maybe I’ll go with a blanket instead and work my way through a intro book while I work on that…
Post # 10
@BeckyS0: I use a fairly simple sewing machine to quilt. (I have a Singer 9960 but started quilting on my Singer Basic.) I make baby and lap-size quilts all the time. Yeah, it would probably be easier with a long-arm but I do ok without it.
Because I didn’t know any better, I picked a pattern based on the fact that I liked it, rather than it being a “easy” pattern. It turned out fine! I did this one. Cutting all the sashing fabric and laying out the squares so they looked good in all directions was the hardest. My #1 piece of advice is to have a large space to lay out all the fabric after it’s cut and before sewing. Like a king bed or your living room floor. Walk around it, looking at it from all sides. Make SURE you know how you want it laid out before you start sewing. Nothing sucks more than sewing up the whole top and then realizing you messed up the placement and having to rip all those seams!
Post # 11
@BeckyS0: I don’t use a special machine. I have just a regular sewing machine. It is a beeeyotch to top quilt the larger blankets but I can’t afford a long arm machine. The book I have is First-time quiltmaking. I got it at joanns with a coupon so it was cheaper than this link. It has a nice little pattern for a really easy starter quilt.
If you have time and patience and are willing to shell out a little money you could make a wonderful gift that will be used often.
Post # 12
Also… I used this tutorial for my first quilt. Well… all the quilting/finishing stuff anyway. I cut all the fabric for the pattern I posted above and pieced the top using tips from the tutorial, and then followed the tutorial to the letter once I had the top done.
Other than my sewing machine (and obviously fabric, batting, and thread) the only tools I use are a cutting mat, rotary cutter (ESSENTIAL!), a long ruler that came with the cutting board, an iron & ironing board, small sharp scissors, and a seam ripper. I now have other rulers and stuff for fancier things, but if your pattern is square-based obviously you just need a straight ruler. The bigger one is better for me because it works for long sashing pieces and is just fine for smaller pieces.
ETA: While I’m all for just jumping in and picking whatever pattern you like, I would not personally start with that diamond one. That is fairly advanced. I don’t see any problem with the brick one or the long stripe one. I’m guessing the stripes one is using a jellyroll- precut fabric in 2.5″ by width of fabric (usually 42″) strips. That would be awesome since you’d just have to cut the sashing (in this case- all the white) fabric. Cutting for me is the worst part since I just want to jump in and get started but you really can’t rush it. So look for patterns that use precuts if you can afford a little extra on fabric (precuts generally cost more than the equivilent amount of fabric). http://www.modabakeshop.com/ is a great place for free patterns using pre-cuts.
Post # 13
@MexiPino: I can only imagine that would suck! I’ve done that the first time I tried to get back into sewing a few years ago (after a 6-7 yr break)- sewed the wrong sides together. Felt like an idiot considering that’s practically sewing 101! Now I’m super careful to check, double check, triple check, walk away and check again later! Ripping seams sucks balls!
@princessbelle: thanks for the book link! I’ve been wanting to get a book but they have soo many I had no idea where to start without buying up ever ‘beginngers’ book. And I’ve got coupons too- I never buy anything in there without em!
Post # 14
@BeckyS0: The ones you above look really hard. Once you sew the front fabric together, the hard part is attaching the backing and batting (if you use it). If you want to use a design to do the stiching, you need the long arm.
I bought a quilt kit that had all the fabric and it was cut. I could’ve add batting, but I didnt. It was super easy since all I had to do to attache the front to the back was stich in the ditch.
My friend used it when her baby did tummy time. Now that she is a toddler, she sits on the couch with Mommy and Daddy and “her blanket”.
Here is an example of a cute but easy baby blanket (but you can find the kits in most craft stores like Joanne’s)
Post # 15
Post # 16
1) is quilting super hard? no, not at all
2) What do I need (on a budget)Look in to a few things, jelly roll quilts fabric that is already cut in to the same size strips and there are some really easy and fun ways to sew them together like These!
There are also two really easy options for quilts if you don’ thave a long arm quilter (which i don’t recomend getting one unless you really really love quilting) many local quilting guilds will have quilting services where you can bring your finished top and the batting and they will put it all together for you professionally for a fee (the one in North poll AK is $70)
The other way to do it is to make a tie quilt, where you layer the top and the batting and the bottom and then tie them together with colorful embroidery floss or yarn. for the edges of the quilt most people use bias tape or ribbon that you sew on to the edge, this makes a fluffier quilt and you don’ thave to quilt the middle, they work well for blankets on the ground for baby to crawl on or light weight throws over a car seat etc. A good easy/cheap way to start.
I teach home ec and have made MANY quilts with junior high and highschool students, there are plenty of patterns that arent difficult if you have the right instructions. feel free to message me if you need help!