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Thread: New to quilting

  1. #11
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Central NJ
    Welcome from one of the many hand quilters here on the board. As everyone else has mentioned, all of the parts of quilting take practice. If you have a flat surface that you are using your mat and rotary cutter, you can also try a couple of spring clamps to help hold the ruler in place. Also helps to have a ruler with a lip on the one end to keep is straight on the mat. Another tip is to put clear rubber or sandpaper (I like/use rubber) dots on the 4 corners of the ruler. Gives some resistance while it's on the fabric. One of the reasons I really enjoy quilting is that I really enjoy sewing on my machine but also like to do hand work - just about any kind. With machine piecing and hand quilting I get the best of both worlds. Do you have a LQS near you for classes or just to ask some questions? Does anyone in your family or friends quilt that they could give you some hints/clues? We're all here to help but sometimes seeing something 'up close & personal' makes it 'click' better/quicker.

  2. #12
    Super Member auntpiggylpn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Michigan. . .FINALLY!!!!
    Blog Entries
    Welcome from Indiana! Do you have a Joann's in your town? I know that the one where I live has had rotary cutting classes, beginning sewing and beginning quilting classes. Find a local quilt shop and go in and talk to the ladies (My favorite LQS actually has a gentleman that works there and teaches classes!) If they don't hold classes, they may be able to point you in the right direction. You tube is your friend. I am mostly self taught and there isn't anything quilting that you can't learn about on youtube or other websites. All I can say is : Sit down, buckle up and hang on tight because quilting is wild ride!!!
    No one has ever become poor by giving. - Anne Frank
    Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that. - Martin Luther King, Jr.


  3. #13
    Super Member quiltsRfun's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Blog Entries
    Quote Originally Posted by meldmac View Post
    Hi everyone! I'm new to quilting and wanted to ask a few questions, first off do any of you do only hand quilting and if so do you have any tips?

    Also I bought a quilting kit with a rotary cutter and mat, does it take practice to use right because I can't seem to cut very straight?
    You don't say whether you have a ruler. A ruler is essential in getting a straight cut. Plus some practice.

  4. #14
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Sorry should have elaborated a little. I have a rotary cutter, mat and ruler.

    As far as Joannes we dont have those in Canada, we do have a Michaels and local quilting store, not real fond of the one down the road as they were really rude when i went in and asked a few questions about beginning to quilt. She basically told me she wouldnt help unless i took a class even though i had just spent over $100 there.

    I am pretty good at teaching myself and am finding this board wonderful already, thank you so much for your great advice.

    At some point i will be getting a sewing machine but until I get rid of a bunch of other stuff we dont have much room here. I have been a crafter for 25+ years since I was 14 mostly cross stitch, but also knitting, crochete, scrapbooking, some small felt projects recently as well. I go back and forth between them but have always wanted to learn to quilt. I have started to piece together some placemats to quilt to see how they go. I am a little daunted about the binding process though.

  5. #15
    Super Member Thumbelina's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Heaven on earth/to N.E. Ohio
    Blog Entries
    Welcome from NE Ohio.

  6. #16
    Super Member Momma_K's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Dayton, TN. but hometown is Rockford IL.
    Don't let the binding bother you to much. Many quilters here use the pillow case method and it seems to work just as well unless you really want a binding, then you can learn on here. This board is wonderful and you'll never stop learning. If ever you have a question there is always someone here ready to answer, just post a thread and ask or go under the menu of threads to see if the issue has already been posted. It really is an easy place to navigate, the more you hunt, the more you learn! Welcome from Tennessee!!
    Thank You Lord for answering my prayers, in this I am truely blessed!

  7. #17
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Welcome to the wonderful world of quilting from Virginia. I am a hand quilter. I do some machine piecing and quilting, but I prefer hand work. For a beginner, I highly recommend these books. (By the way I have them and refer to them often.) First, for piecing, Harriet Hargrave's "Quilting Academy" books. She has Freshman, Sophomore, Junior and Senior books. She starts with the basics in her Freshman book with squaring the fabric, cutting it, and simple piecing. Each books progresses with more difficult projects. They are easy to understand and follow. Since you don't have a machine, you might be interested in hand piecing. Jinny Beyer has an excellent book "Quiltmaking By Hand." For hand quilting, I learned from Roxanne McElroy's "That Perfect Stitch" book. She passed away just before her book was published, but her daughter Dierdra McElroy has continued in her mother's footsteps and has a DVD also called "That Perfect Stitch." As far as hand quilting, my suggestions are after deciding how you want to learn (class, book, or DVD), invest in a good hoop or frame and thimble. The hoop shouldn't be any larger than the measurement from your elbow to the knuckles on your hand. Anything larger, there will be space in the hoop that you can't reach and I think would be cumbersome to handle. I have a 14 inch Jasmine hoop that I've used for 15+ years and it's still in excellent condition. However, I've tried to find this company on line recently with no luck. I know it was a family owned business and the lady who designed the hoops and frames had been ill. I'm strongly suspecting that it's no longer in business. The pro side of a lap hoop is that I can sit in my comfortable chair and quilt. The down side is that with all that quilt in you lap you can get very warm. I also have a 14 inch Grace floor hoop as well as a Grace Z44 floor frame. I use the floor hoop a lot for small quilts. The floor frame is amazing, but I'm sorry to admit that I never mastered the art of quilting away from myself with my thumb. So, I use the frame for basting. The next thing is a good thimble. Just try one on until you find one that fits comfortable. Just make sure it has deep dimples to hold the needle. I alternate using Roxanne's thimble, and Thimblelady. Because I have an allergy to metals I need a silver thimble, but if allergies are not a problem for you there are many others on the market to choose from. I learned to quilt with the pad of my finger rather than the end of my finger. It creates less stress on my finger. Also, check in with Craftsy. I believe that site has some online quilting classes. You can pay for the class, download it and learn at your own pace. I believe I just saw an ad for heirloom hand quilting class for $39.99. I don't know the lady who teaches. I haven't taken any classes from this site, but I have friends who have and they have been extremely satisfied. Happy quilting!

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