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Thread: How do you Proceed on a new quilt? What's your M.O.?

  1. #1
    gigi2landon's Avatar
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    I belong to another quilting board and recently posed this question.

    For me I tend to buy kits, as all the work is done - no stress, colors match, right amount of material etc.

    However, I love to buy patterns (gulp)! I just finished Sitting Pretty. I laid out the pattern, looked at it, read the instructions over and over and then started to lay out material. Read the instructions again, looked at the material removed some material added some more. Walked around the big table, re-arranged everything, read the instructions, bit the bullet and started cutting.

    OF Course with this method, I normally do not have enough material which in turn causes a trip to the LQS, which I did and purchased the material for the sashing, which I love. I don't have a huge stash and really don't want one. I always keep neutrals, creams, etc. on hand.

    Bottom line is what's your process? How do you Proceed? What's your M.O.????? :roll: :?:

  2. #2
    Power Poster sandpat's Avatar
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    I usually get in idea (could be from anywhere..a pattern...the floor in the bathroom..the crop rows in the field..well, you get the picture)..then I start with 1 focus fabric. It could be something from my stash, or it could be something I see on line or my LQS. Then I build my other colors to go with from there. This way seems to work for me. I'm sure everyone is different. I rarely use a pattern "AS IS"..I always change it. :roll:

  3. #3
    Senior Member Mrs. Mel's Avatar
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    I have only been quilting since past summer; but I find that I choose a pattern I see or buy a pattern I like and then proceed to picking out the colours that I think complement each other. Of course, it depends on where the quilt will be used; that determines colours as well.

    I have only bought one kit (Tag Sale by Moda) cz my hubby fell in love with it and gave to dd for Christmas. It turned out great.

    It is so much fun; I can't remember what I did before quilting! :)

  4. #4
    Moderator Jim's Gem's Avatar
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    I start in many different ways. The one I started the other day, I picked out a pattern in my collection and then decided that I would only choose from fat quarters that I already have, this time. So I picked out 20 fat quarters that would compliment/contrast with eachother, picked out a background fabric, a tan, that I had enough of and just cut away. Other times I will pull out a focus fabric, study it, pick out a pattern, then pull the rest of the fabrics to compliment or contrast with my focus. I love having a large stash cause it is so fun to just say "I feel like a .....quilt" and just walk in and pull the fabrics and get started. I have done that lots of times. Other times, if I am making it as a gift for someone, I will research their favorite colors, pull what I have in my stash that I think will work, and If I need something else, I will go shopping and then come home and finish off from my stash. I have a couple of patterns that are really quick and easy for me to do and they use 15 fat quarterss (or 1/8 yards) and 2 boarders. I love to use lots of different fabrics in my quilts.

  5. #5
    Super Member Barbm's Avatar
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    I bought fabric for my bedroom- which includes the quilt, 2 shams, bedskirt, 3 toppers and pairs of curtains. I bought as much as I could of it since I love it so much.

    I have a pattern called Pennsylvania Turnpike which is a throw size. I adjusted the directions to make it fit my bed. Then I found "Cambridge" a free pattern online. Now I don't know which one to do. I love both. I plan on cutting into it once I finish the 2 projects I have in process (quilting the one, have to finish piecing the other). Of course, by then I may have another pattern in mind.

    I bought a lot of things on ebay to build my stash. I finally feel I have enough that I could do some real cool scrap quilts as the pattern strikes my fancy. But if I need a gift, I usually purchase the fabric to match the pattern.

    So, I guess what I'm saying is- do whatever you like! There's no real right or wrong way!

  6. #6
    Super Member Bill'sBonBon's Avatar
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    I start with ideas of my own when family members want a baby quilt or whatever. Sometimes a blend of Ideas from me and whoever gets the quilt. I have never made a quilt from a kit. Thought about it though. I use templates,rulers buy my material,if I don't have it. For myself I like to look at a finished project and be able to say,( I did that, every cut,stitch,sandwich, mistake. That is all MINE!) :mrgreen:
    Bill'sBonBon

  7. #7
    Senior Member Kara's Avatar
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    Usually come up with an idea and then buy fabric.

    Lately, though, I've been working on what my hubby calls "leftover" quilts. I'm into long-straight borders with mitered corners so much that I buy the extra yardage even if the border is only 1" wide. So I have all this fabric "leftover" that's no longer 45" wide and not too great for strip piecing with other fabrics. So I've been making pinwheels. I'm actually ready to construct the top. Only needed 4 colors counting the white. I'll post pics soon. Bought fabric for borders, but plan on using the whole width.

    Have 2 more "leftover" quilts in the planning stage. It's hard to come up with something that requires the amount of fabric you have, just in case you can't find it anymore.

  8. #8
    gigi2landon's Avatar
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    Purchasing from EBAY? Have you had good luck? I'd like to do that but have been hesitant.

  9. #9
    gigi2landon's Avatar
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    WOW, I'd never think to do that!

  10. #10
    gigi2landon's Avatar
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    In other words there's no right or wrong way to proceed! Which makes me feel better.

    Sometimes I feel like such a dunce, I will get finished with the top then have to go out and buy the backing........

    Get 1/2 through with the Top and decide hum, I don't like the material I have on hand.......

    I do love to change my mind........

  11. #11
    Super Member Barbm's Avatar
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    I buy from people/stores with excellent feedback and ratings.

    I've only had 1 issue where I bought something and had to pursue the guy for my books. When they came, they weren't what was advertised. By then, I wanted to be rid of him. Did get some that I love so it was worth the hassle.

  12. #12
    Super Member Rose Marie's Avatar
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    I have a small stash so far.
    Just added $39 to it today.
    Mostly I use a pattern. I have to many problems if I dont. Like not enough fabric and cant match it at any fabric shop in town.

  13. #13
    gigi2landon's Avatar
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    39.00 is a pretty good add to the stash! hehe

    I'm a pattern person too, I'm not creative enough to just start a quilt...unless it's a crazy quilt using all of my scraps I've done 3 or 4 of those, I usually put heavy blankets in the middle and just tie those. Oddly enough those are the families favorite quilts, there's usually an argument over those........hummmmmm
    8) 8) 8)

  14. #14

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    It's interesting to read how other proceed. Much like Sandpat I don't often "stick to a pattern". Sometimes I pick a block, and sometimes I pick my focus fabric first. That's the way it turned out with the Spring Sampler I'm working on now. First I picked my focus fabric and then I went through my tiny stash and picked all the fabrics (mostly blenders and batiks) that matched the focus fabric. Now when ever I want to sew I pick a block and pick the fabrics from the pile.

    Well... Now that I'm thinking about it, normally what happens with a pattern is that I see a pattern that inspires me, and then I draft my own version of it, sometimes very much the same and most often very different and go from there.

    Since we all think differently it's like you said there is no right way. I think it's good, because what would we do with 1000's of matching quilts. Oh wait isn't that a department store? :shock:

  15. #15
    gigi2landon's Avatar
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    LOL I love that.....I wanted to know because this is something I do all on my own with very little input other than an occasional grunt from DH! A full sentence would startle me! hehe

    SO it's nice to know what others do and how others work! Kind of keeps me on a level playing field in my own mind or would that be a field of dreams in my own mind?????????// :oops:

  16. #16
    Super Member mpspeedy's Avatar
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    Hi, I have been doing this so long that I have changed my MO a dozen times. I currently have a queen size quilt I am handquilting. I have also been making a number of Linus quilts on the machine. My stash is enormous but I always have room for more. A friend of mine is the chairperson for our county's Linus project. She told me they need more quilts for boys. That gave me an excuse to shop for more male oriented fabrics. Just yesterday I hit our local Joanns and came home with 5 peices of fabric suitable for the male persuasion. I like to use flannel on the backs so I found some good bargins in that department also.
    I will admit I tend to purchase patterns I like but rarely get around to using them. I local pattern maker Zebra Patterns has some really great little projects. We had her as a speaker for both of my guilds and she gave us a great price on her patterns. I think I purchased 7. The only one I have used is a pattern for a chairback cover that has a birthday cake. Her pattern calls for a pink ruffle around the edge. Since I was making it for a grand nephew I made the color scheme more primary rather than on the pink side and eliminated the ruffle. It turned out really nice. The applique on it was fused and satin stitched. I had forgotten how much work that took. I was very pleased with the result.
    I have some other patterns that I am getting up enough energy to execute. In the meantime they look nice hanging around my sewing area.
    One of the things I like most about the Zebra Patterns is that each piece to be appliqued is drawn seperately and to scale. I have purchased patterns in the past that had lovely designs but were merely a line drawing inside that I would have to break down into seperate pieces. I am not willing to go to that much trouble.
    In general I let a fabric dictate what the design will be. Simple four or nine patch designs showcasing a print or graphic makes a stunning quilt with a few contrasting borders. I have all of the fabrics to make one of Mimi Dietrich's faux Baltimore Alblum quilts. One of these days I will settle down and do it. I sometimes use my embroidery machine to make simple blocks like square in a square featuring the embroidery. The quilt currently on my bed is one I made like that.

  17. #17
    Super Member Marcia's Avatar
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    My MO changes from one project to the next!! If it is a wallhanging, then I usually have/buy a pattern and pick fabrics from my stash to make it. Once I get to the borders, I am off to the store with my top, looking for something to finish it off.

    If I am making a throw or bed size quilt it is usually because I have found a line of fabric that I like. So, I buy a couple of jelly rolls, a fat quarter stack or layer cakes, some fabric for borders, etc. THEN, I go home and look through my patterns, books and magazines for inspiration. Usually I get an idea then I am graphing on graph paper to make it the size, shape, etc that will work with the fabrics I already purchased (is that bass-ackwards or what?!?!?)

    I do not think I have ever purchased a pattern, found "just the right fabrics" for it and then took it home and made it by the pattern!! That would be too "normal" for me!!!!!

  18. #18
    Power Poster sewnsewer2's Avatar
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    I generally will either design one in EQ5 or see a fabric and let it speak to me.

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