Fact: the nicer you are to your sewing machine, the better it will behave. And if you want it to stay in tip-top shape, it's important to give it a good cleaning. Here's what you should be doing about every eight hours of use.
Half-square triangles, or HSTs, are fundamental quilt units used in many classic block designs, from the pinwheel to the friendship star. Learn to make them two-at-a-time for double the fun in half the time.
Straight line quilting is a simple and effective way to finish your quilts. You can do it on a home machine, and you only have to worry about moving your quilt in one direction. Play with the width between your lines of stitching for a denser or more airy effect.
As a newbie quilter, nine-patch blocks are one of the first you'll learn to make. It's easy to pull together, and learning this technique will give you a design that's versatile, traditional and trendy all at the same time.
Chain piecing is fast, saves thread and can lead to more accurate piecing. By feeding one pair of fabric directly after the next, and piecing in batches rather than pressing after each seam, you’ll find your quilts come together in a flash.
Stitch in the ditch is a beginner-friendly technique for anyone just learning how to quilt. And when we say easy, we mean it: All you do is sew along the seam lines that join your quilt blocks — aka the ditch — so you have a clear (and usually straight) path to stitch! Bonus: stitching in the ditch adds extra stability to your quilt, it can be done before you add decorative quilting, or you can leave it as a design all its own. Hello, triple threat!
Pressing seams helps keep your quilt top flat for easier quilting. While you'll use a bunch of different methods throughout the quilting process, this one helps control bulk when a lot of them intersect.
If you're looking for a fun and fast project, sewing four-patch quilt blocks is for you! These are a classic, and are great to use in quilt borders or interspersed with solid blocks for visual interest. Here's how to make four of 'em using just four charm squares, so you can make the most of your stash.
This fresh and funky pixelated heart is easy to make if you know quilting basics, and it's gorgeous in traditional Valentine's Day hues. Use this beauty in a larger quilt, or frame it to gift to your sweetie. Talk about a modern romance!
From Hand Quilting: Heirloom Design & Technique, Episode: Marking More Designs
That's how we would do the echo quilting around here on the heart. Now, this is a big empty space down in the corners, and I'd like to add another heart, a smaller scale heart that we could echo around if we'd like, but it'll help fill that empty space. Using me hera marker and little cardboard template of a heart design. I'm just going to situate it so that it looks pretty even, evenly spaced from each border and from the feathered heart and now I'm going to draw around it with my hera marker. I'm crimping a line into the fabric just like this, holding it steady. Let's get this last little bi...
From Startup Library: Quilting, Episode: Exercise: Free-Motion Quilting
So before we jump in and start free motion quilting on the real quilt let's go over how to make your pathway around the quilt. You can follow along and mark your own path with the diagram that's included in the class materials or you can just watch me do it couple times so you get the hang of it. Now on my little diagram here I've drawn in those lines that we're already stitched when we did the walking foot quilting. Those are already on my quilt, they're obviously not quilting in black, I just drew 'em with a black line so you could see 'em. And we've got to navigate around those lines. Becau...
From Quick Techniques for Classic Blocks: Wrenches, Stars & Twists, Episode: Monkey Wrench & Double Wrench
As I promised earlier, I'm going to show you now quickly some options for rearranging the subunits to get different blocks using the pieces that were generated by the double wrench pattern. This is a double wrench. This is a double wrench with a light wrench and this is the propeller. And when you make these arrangements in your sewing room, you can decide whether you want a light center or a dark center to emphasize the propeller. I'm fond of light centers. These blocks are similar. In fact, these are practically identical except for the fact that I've rotated the block around. You see, it ha...
From Piece by Piece: Quilt-As-You-Go Techniques, Episode: More Complicated Blocks
I wanted to pass on some more ideas for looking for blocks that you can quilt as you piece. One of the things I always suggest to people is that they look at beginning foundation paper piecing books. Not the complicated ones that have like a thousand pieces in a four-inch square, but a nice big 12-inch square that has just a few lines. There's a good chance that you can use your and figure out how to break that block down for quilting as you piece. We talked always about thinking about blocks from the center out like Log Cabin and Virginia Reel, but those same idea works for blocks from the co...
From Paper Piecing the Quiltworx Dresden Plate, Episode: Preparing the Fabric
- Hi, welcome back. In this lesson, we will be stacking and cutting fabrics using the template layout sheets from Lesson 1. We'll also be grouping the fabrics. We will also learn how to use the Unit B cutting ruler and template A-6, preparing and stacking the fabric for chain piecing as well. All right, let's get started. We're gonna show you how to use the template layout sheets that we had previously cut. Remember, one of the things that you should always have is a new rotary blade in your cutter. It makes it easier for you to cut through the fabrics especially when you're cutting through la...
From Canyon Creek Quilt-Along, Episode: Corner Star Blocks
Now we have our spiky star block. We've already completed our candy twist block. This one's actually constructed very similarly to the candy twist block. We have this same square in diamond center construction and our cornerstones on the sides. And the only thing is different is what makes up the star spikes. And the unit that makes up the star spikes for this block is the Tri-Recs block right here. It's got this center triangle and two little spikes on the side. So, your pattern already comes with template pieces to cut out all of these. So you'll have an A template piece, and that actually c...
From Piece by Piece: Quilt-As-You-Go Techniques, Episode: Borders & Binding
- Welcome back. When you've joined blocks or sections, there's a good chance you still want to add borders to frame the central part of the quilt. In this lesson, we're going to give you a quick tip on joining biased seams. We're going to show you a stitch-and-flip border, an unbeatable binding tip, and finally a way to do an encased seams border Now, the first thing I want to show you is this little tip. And remember I mentioned the corner trimmers that you could get to get rid of the dog ears? I like to use this for joining binding strips, or really any seam. You know, it's really better if ...
From Startup Library: Quilting, Episode: Exercise: Free-Motion Quilting
And now I'm going to start stitching, I'm gonna pull my bobbin thread up. Get it out of the way. I'm gonna take my little eight to 10 tiny stitches in place to lock those threads. And I'm gonna go right in to that stippling in the background areas. Now as I stipple my pathway may not be exactly how I draw it out ahead of time, but that's just gonna give me a guideline of where I need to go. I may or may not stipple all of this background, I might do some of the background and come back and pick it up later, but the idea is that I'm stippling my way towards that point in my triangle. Alright, a...
From 2015 Craftsy Block of the Month, Episode: December: Finishing
- Here we are at the final lesson. It's been quite a journey. I hope you've enjoyed it. This last lesson, we're going to be discussing proportions for the borders, how to measure and miter the borders, and, finally, how to finish the quilt. I love to work with border prints as a final finish to the quilts, the way we've done in our Block a Month. Typically, I like to use a narrow border print and then another fabric in between and then a wider one to finish it off. When I design border print fabrics, I design with that specific idea in mind. So I always have a narrow border print, I always hav...