Welcome to the Quilting Board!

Already a member? Login above
loginabove
OR
To post questions, help other quilters and reduce advertising (like the one on your left), join our quilting community. It's free!

Page 1 of 3 1 2 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 58

Thread: Questions About Making String Quilts

  1. #1
    Super Member Jeanne S's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    Tulsa, Ok
    Posts
    4,161

    Questions About Making String Quilts

    I am planning to make my first string quilt after the holidays. What I have in mind is the common design of strips of fabric sewn together then cut in the square block size with the strips on the diagonal across the block. My questions are: (1) is a separate foundation necessary? (2). If yes, do you recommend a muslin or paper foundation and what are the pros/cons of each? (3) are there any other tips or potential issues I should know? Thanks for your advice!

  2. #2
    Super Member AngeliaNR's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    SW Missouri
    Posts
    2,954
    Blog Entries
    144
    I have done all of mine on paper. I have seen pictures of them done without foundation--but I'd worry about stretching. If you use muslin, it won't be removed, so that takes away one step vs. paper. The quilt would have an extra layer of fabric, so I assume it would be warmer.

    Something to watch for: if you use a single color in the center of each block to create a pattern, position it carefully and consistently, so it will line up across blocks. String blocks are very forgiving since they don't have to match along the sides, but the center strip is important if you want to create a pattern across the quilt.

    Have fun--these are my favorite blocks to make!
    Courtesy is not optional.

    http://theeclecticabuela.blogspot.com/

  3. #3
    Power Poster lynnie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Long Island
    Posts
    24,530
    Blog Entries
    1
    great advice.
    i'd use a light wt fabric, maybe muslin white prewashed. that has a tendency to shrink a lot, and selvages not so much. PLEASE, show us your blocks. love string blocks.
    put off till tomorrow what you can do today, and if you procrastinate long enough, you may never have to do it.

  4. #4
    Super Member SandyinZ4's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Southeast Idaho
    Posts
    3,215
    Blog Entries
    9
    I have made three string quilts. My first one I used no foundation and only a kite shape to begin with and added strings on both sides. My 2nd and 3rd, I used fabric that was really thin and a pale neutral color as my foundation. I cut pieces of it into about 6.5 inch size and then began sewing on strings. # 2 I used a common fabric for my center starting strip so that made the design in the centers look joined. My 3rd, I again used really thin fabric and sewed selvedges. I did that one as QAYG. I really like the idea of using the thin fabric (muslin would be great, too as Lynnie said) because I hate ripping off the paper. I just used a lightweight batting and they were just right when quilted. After the strips were sewn on and foundation covered, I re-trimmed to the size I wanted them to be. You could choose any size for yours. Just cut out oversize pieces of foundation to start off with.
    She who dies with the most fabric, didn't sew fast enough!

  5. #5
    Power Poster
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    35,969
    I've done the Spiderweb string pieced quilt from Bonnie Hunter's free pattern on www.quiltville.blogspot.ca She uses phone book pages and shows how to make the center template. I used the phone books pages as well and a smaller stitch length and the paper came out easily after each triangle was trimmed.
    I did another string block with thin fabric foundation and it made the blocks thicker than I liked. I set them with 3/4 inch (1/2 finished) black sashing so the the thicker block edges could be iron into the sashing. This made the quilt top all feel about the same weight and it quilted fine with my machine.
    So paper or foundation fabric is up to you.

  6. #6
    Super Member pojo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    1,940
    I use muslin on mine.
    don't like to rip paper off
    Have a nice day and a safe one too!

  7. #7
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Chula Vista CA
    Posts
    6,700
    I did the spiderweb quilt using the papers from MSQC and it went very fast. Tearing the paper went quickly too, but I think it kind of distorted the triangles and I had to square them up to keep the center from bulging. I have not tried cloth so can't say which is better.

  8. #8
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Northern Michigan
    Posts
    12,089
    Blog Entries
    1
    I like using inexpensive, thin, muslin for foundations. The up side is you do not have to remove the foundation. Removing all the paper is tedious and very time consuming. Some people do not like how heavy the quilts are, but around here we like heavy quilts, so that is not an issue
    hiding away in my stash where i'm warm, safe and happy

  9. #9
    Super Member Daylesewblessed's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    West Texas
    Posts
    2,075
    I have made many string quilts as well as "sew and flip" block quilts, and I always use old thin sheets for foundation. There is extra weight and thickness with a fabric foundation, but it works for me.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Pudge's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Southington, CT
    Posts
    767
    For those who use muslin foundation - do you then add batting and backing and quilt as usual?

    Cheryl

  11. #11
    Super Member sinceresissy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Missouri
    Posts
    1,460
    I just sewed mine together without any paper or muslin. I don't think I had any strips that were less than 1-1/2". I didn't have any problems. I have had a problem with another type of quilt that was a triangle with a large base that stretched so I do starch my material now. I sew by hand so it is probably different than sewing on the machine.

  12. #12
    Power Poster
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Corpus Christi, Tx.
    Posts
    15,972
    Blog Entries
    3
    I save tissue paper like you get with shoe boxes and tissue paper by the package is cheap. I 20x30" sheet will give you 6 10" layer cake slices. I save all my tissue paper. And I usually tear the paper off after I have the sheet filled. It's one of those things you can do at the computer or in front of the tv.

  13. #13
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    AR/NM
    Posts
    357
    I have heard about using Pellon 830 for the foundation. This what I plan to use when I make a string quilt. It is very thin but strong enough.
    When I was about 9 or 10 yr old, my mom taught me how to make string blocks by sewing strips onto squares cut from pages of an old Montgomery Ward catalog!
    Last edited by GrammieJan; 12-24-2014 at 05:41 AM.

  14. #14
    Power Poster Homespun's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    McLoud, OK
    Posts
    12,226
    Quote Originally Posted by Pudge View Post
    For those who use muslin foundation - do you then add batting and backing and quilt as usual?

    Cheryl
    I have backed them with muslin, thin material and phonebook pages. (I don't mind ripping off the paper!) And yes, then add batting and backing and quilt as usual.
    Retired teacher, loving it.
    Love quilting also.

  15. #15
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Tn
    Posts
    2,761
    I have also used muslin. There is a product out kind of like interfacing. It stays soft and is lightweight. Makes for nice blocks that don't stretch. I oversize the blocks and trim after sewing my strips.

  16. #16
    Super Member HillCountryGal's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    The beautiful Texas hill country.
    Posts
    1,261
    Name:  IMG_3888.jpg
Views: 660
Size:  172.6 KB

    I made this one using paper from Missouri Star Quilt Company. Didn't mind tearing the paper off... mindless work can be a good thing!

  17. #17
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    Posts
    326
    I used muslin when doing some small baby quilts. I also used a thin batting. They weren't heavy but they also weren't very large.
    Pat

    Pfaff 7510, Viking Mega Quilter, Viking Quilt Designer II, Singer Treadle

    http://craftypat.blogspot.com/

  18. #18
    Super Member franc36's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Tennessee
    Posts
    1,497
    I am in the process of making my first string quilt. I make a block a day using paper from MSQC and a very small stitch. The paper comes off easily for me and I have had no distortion.

  19. #19
    Power Poster ManiacQuilter2's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    18,937
    I plan to start one next year and I plan to use muslin just because I don't want to try to remove all that paper from the back of the block.
    A Good Friend, like an old quilt, is both a Treasure and a Comfort

  20. #20
    Senior Member SusanSusan33's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    SW Florida
    Posts
    738
    I'm glad to hear good reviews on teh papers from MSQC. I bought some last year and haven't tried it yet...
    SusanSusan33- Blessed by God at Age 33 (Oct '00) with B/G twins. U.S. Air Force Veteran (1995-2002).

  21. #21
    Super Member thimblebug6000's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    British Columbia
    Posts
    6,840
    Jeanne... I've used both with no preference, both fun. You asked for any tips.... when you get near the "tips" of the square, use a strip larger than 1 " so you don't get too much bulk in your joining seam. Some of mine have pretty small little pieces near the edges. I'll post a picture of a care quilt (used paper foundation on this one) just to try to show you what I mean. Name:  Jan 09 care quilt002_edited.jpg
Views: 479
Size:  1.23 MB
    You see where the blocks come together to form a square in this setting...lots of little pieces.... and I used all different widths of strips with no plan which one came next.

  22. #22
    Junior Member Marsh's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Glendale and Flagstaff, AZ
    Posts
    182
    I came across this pattern at Mary Quilts. http://www.maryquilts.com/amish-stripes-and-strings/
    I think this is just beautiful, and plan to make it next month. It is a free download pattern, and the black print seems, to my eyes anyway, to calm down the strips.

  23. #23
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Tri-Cities, WA
    Posts
    1,058
    Muslin or old sheet foundation squares are easier for arthritic hands than tearing off any kind of paper (at least for mine!). I love these quilts - your strips don't even have to be straight (or your seams!), and you can put it away for years if you'd like, then pick it up and just get going again. I like either white or dark strips for the center. You can arrange the blocks in diamond or zig-zag patterns. These are fun!
    Margaret F

  24. #24
    Super Member TexasSunshine's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Kilgore Tx
    Posts
    1,886
    I use a very thin muslin and add batting and LA as usual.
    Texas Sunshine, piney woods of NE Texas

  25. #25
    Junior Member Shadowirish's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Bellingham, WA
    Posts
    266
    Blog Entries
    1
    If you use a muslin or other fabric foundation, putting your blocks together with a walking foot and pressing seams open makes construction easier IMHO.

Page 1 of 3 1 2 ... LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

SEO by vBSEO ©2011, Crawlability, Inc.