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Thread: Wanted: Your estimate on getting started quilting

  1. #1
    Senior Member PuffinGin's Avatar
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    As I scan through posts, I see the many of supplies, tools, gadgets, and materials that are needed in making quilts. Some are necessary, or mostly so, some probably not. I'd like to hear from you about how much you think it costs to get started quilting as it is currently done. I'd like you to think about what would you consider your 'necessaries' and your 'desirables' for quilting and provide a starting cost as you see it. To level things out a bit, let's assume you have a sewing machine you think is adequate to use for starting to make a quilt top. Let's also not include a machine for doing free-motion quilting. Just the basics.

    How much would you estimate you'd spend if you wanted to try making a first quilt and didn't have anything other than a basic sewing machine?

  2. #2
    Power Poster
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    At one time, people were able to make quilts with fabric, scissors, needle, and thread (and thimble) - and something to make patterns from and to trace around the patterns.

    In fact, at one time, a needle was a very valuable household asset.

  3. #3
    Super Member Murphy's Avatar
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    I use a basic sewing machine. I also already owned a totally adequate iron.

    When I started I purchased a rotary cutter, ruler for straight edge (this was a large ruler-$35.00), self healing cutting mat, light gray (or other neutral color) Gutterman thread (I like this thread), quilt pins and the fabric required for my first project (a rail fence pattern made for a toddler). Many of the accessories items can be purchased using 40-50 percent off coupons from Joanns. I do purchase good quality fabric at my local quilt shop.

    Quote Originally Posted by PuffinGin
    As I scan through posts, I see the many of supplies, tools, gadgets, and materials that are needed in making quilts. Some are necessary, or mostly so, some probably not. I'd like to hear from you about how much you think it costs to get started quilting as it is currently done. I'd like you to think about what would you consider your 'necessaries' and your 'desirables' for quilting and provide a starting cost as you see it. To level things out a bit, let's assume you have a sewing machine you think is adequate to use for starting to make a quilt top. Let's also not include a machine for doing free-motion quilting. Just the basics.

    How much would you estimate you'd spend if you wanted to try making a first quilt and didn't have anything other than a basic sewing machine?

  4. #4
    Moderator QuiltnNan's Avatar
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    well, one can make a quilt with a pair of scissors and some home-made templates of cardboard or milk jugs :) but to get started with modern tools, i would say that the minimum in equipment would be a rotary cutter, a mat, and a ruler. the most versatile ruler, imho, is the 6x24.

  5. #5
    Moderator Up North's Avatar
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    Good scissors. cutting mat and rotary cutter thread and fabric I would say $100.00 just to begin making a quilt and that would be using cheap fabric. Someone will come along with a better estimate. Oh and a seam ripper! Good Luck

  6. #6
    Junior Member
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    Fabric $???
    Rotary cutter/mat/ruler kit $30 when on sale at Joann's
    seam ripper $2
    scissors $10
    thread $10
    Pattern free on internet $0
    Batting $10-$40 (depends on what you want to use)

    This is what most of us start with. You get more as you go along, but most don't start with all the goodies.

  7. #7
    Senior Member
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    IMHO, I would absolutely need a rotary cutter and mat, because I simply will not be able to accurately cut squares and strips. A 24x36 inch mat is on sale at JAF for $30 right now, and a Fiskars 45 mm cutter is $9. I'd buy a 12.5x12.5 inch ruler so I could square up my blocks - $17. And I'd probably get a longer ruler for cutting strips - $12. Without taking any coupons into account, that'd be $68 for things that didn't include the fabric, batting, or thread. (I'm assuming that if you have a machine, you also have an iron, ironing board, and basic fabric scissors.)

    While I have plenty more stuff than that, I'd say those are my bare minimums. YMMV

  8. #8
    Super Member maine ladybug's Avatar
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    I had just a regular machine when I took my first class about 10 years ago. I had to purchase a rotary cutter, board,ruler and pins, as well as the fabric and pattern. I found as I started that I needed a good seam ripper ( LOL ) as well and got one of those. I would estimate that I must have spent about a hundred dollars or so for my very first quilt. I would have to add the cost of the batting and backing tomake it complete, so maybe $150.

  9. #9
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    If you already have a sewing machine, you could do it cheaply by getting a kit of precut fabric and probably with thread, scissors, batting not spend much more than $100.00. We are talking very basic type supplies here.

  10. #10
    Super Member mollymct's Avatar
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    My first purchases (I already had a basic machine, which I still use!) were a rotary cutter/blades, a cutting mat and a ruler. I already had some other necessities in my general sewing supplies (machine needles, hand needles, scissors, seam ripper, thread, pins, etc). My first quilt was from baby clothes and was on the small side, so I purchased backing, binding fabric, a little border fabric, a small package of batting. I'm sure my initial outlay was less than 100 dollars. I was making the quilt as a gift for my best friend and honestly had no intention to make another! I was close to sacking the whole idea before stumbling onto this site.

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