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Crafty Corner If you are creative, love to knit or crochet, paint, or just enjoy making fun stuff with your kids, this is the forum for you.

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Old 03-13-2003, 04:04 AM
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Question Quilting Beginner here

I am sitting here surrounded by quilting books, fabric and all the things to get started on making a quilt. I am embarressed to say that I have had all of the "equipment" for over a year, and just can't seem to get going. I don't know where to start, and what the first step is. All my life I have wanted to make a quilt!!
I think I have bought to many books now, and am very much confused. Can any one help me? I would appreciate it so very much!! Cafe
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Old 03-13-2003, 02:02 PM
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Hi Cafe. I'm a beginning quilter too. I don't know if you have access to a quilt shop or a JoAnn's Fabric but they usually have classes you can sign up for for anywhere from $10 to $50. So that is an idea. They have a variety of different classes to choose from and it is a good way to learn techniques. Remember that quilt making is basically cutting some cotton fabrics apart and then sewing them back together again to make a design. That is all it is.

If that isn't feasible for some reason, then I think I would go through one of your basic books (do you have a book just of different blocks) and pick one or two blocks that appeal to you, that look simple and pull some fabrics together and start making just the blocks.

Don't stress over what fabrics to use--pick a focus fabric and then pull colors from that to find small prints, solids, medium prints. Make sure that you have some variety in the intensity of the fabrics you chose. But! do not let not knowing what fabrics go together stop you from starting. Just start. As you go along you will learn what works and what doesn't work.

Since you'll be doing this by yourself, this will allow you to not invest in a long term project right of the bat, will let you figure out how to cut the fabric in the sizes it needs to be, piece the block part into a block. You can make a whole sampler quilt from just making different blocks--one block at a time.

When you feel a bit competent about making blocks, look in your books about adding sashing to get the blocks together into a size you want (you can make hot pad size, or placemat size or crib size or twin and so on--again, I would start small). Put the sashing on, look up binding and prepare your binding, look up how to attach a backing and do that, look up how to quilt (by hand or machine) and do that. Once you've done that you will have made a quilt whether it is a hot pad (one block), a placemat with six blocks or whathave you.

Having a ton of books is so exciting but can be overwhelming. Just try to clear your head, pick something out and dive it--it is only fabric, it is only thread and your are doing this to give you pleasure not to win an award.

If you would like to pick out a block, I'd be glad to find a pattern in one of my books and you could make your block and I could make the same one so we were kind of doing it together and could commiserate over whether our points matched, or our seams were really 1/4 inch or whether we liked the colors we put together as much as we thought we would.

I'm serious so just let me know.

Happy sewing to you.

I hope you get lots of responses. I framed mine this what because you said you had all the tools and were still stuck. Some people may tell you to make a certain quilt but if you are stuck and can't start like I think you are, then I'd start small.
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Old 03-14-2003, 04:42 AM
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Beginner Quilter

Julie, THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!! I printed out your message. You hit the nail on the head, and KNOW exactly how I am feeling.
I HAVE been stressing over what fabric to use, and have kept buying more and more, until I have 2 big tubs full. (Thank heavens I have a very understanding DH) I am going to do just what you said, "Just start."

Yes, I will be doing this on my own, at my own pace. Several years ago, I had a stroke, and am no longer able to drive. Therefore, I am not able to get to Joanns for a class. We have both a Han****'s & Joann's close by, so I am able to get there when hubby can take me. ;-)

I really appreciate your offer to make one with me, and may later take you up on it. I am going to see what I can do the next few days, as your instructions have been VERY HELPFUL. I will keep you posted, and stay in touch. I really appreciate you answering so quickly. Cafe
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Old 03-14-2003, 05:12 PM
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Cafe, I am so glad you found my post helpful. I hope you enjoy the process. I'll keep checking back on you.
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Old 03-16-2003, 08:22 AM
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Fist off, let me say that I don't quilt. Both of my grandmothers took care of that when I was very young. I do have a suggestion that may help. I don't know what size town you live in, but I am sure that there is someone there that does quilt. Check around, we have a quilters group here, and you will find someone that would love to share their love of quilting with you. You could even find an older person, that maybe lives alone that would be thrilled to share their time and knowledge with you. You would also be bringing something very important into both lives. We have a tendency to let the knowledge and experiences of our seniors die with them. Just my 2 cents worth.
Have a Jesus blessed day!
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Old 03-16-2003, 10:21 AM
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Some community colleges offer night classes in quilting...It might be worth looking at your local college... or Fabric center....
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Old 03-16-2003, 10:38 AM
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Check out http://quilting.about.com/ -- great information for all skill levels and you can also sign up for the newsletter. Quilting is great fun, something I've been interested in all my adult life, but only now had time to do. It helps that there's a lot of new products and techniques for accomplishing your goals quickly. An absorbing and rewarding craft.

Blessings

GramZ
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Old 03-16-2003, 11:27 AM
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www.sew-whats-new.com has beginning quilter lessons on their site. They also have a discussion board with many experienced and helpful quilters.

Happy Quilting!
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Old 03-16-2003, 06:24 PM
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Great fun!! I am a fabricaholic and wish I had more time to quilt. HGTV runs a fun show called Simply Quilts...it can serve as inspiration at times. They have also in the past run a year long block of the month on the web site. There is also an author by the name of Mary Ellen Hopkins (she is a real hoot if anyone ever has the opportunity to see her). She wrote a book called "The It's Okay If You Sit On My Quilt Book Vol. 1" which breaks down many, many blocks into simple squares and triangles, as well as gives simple, basic instructions for everything. Also, check your local paper to see if they have a number for a local quilt guild. It is very possible that they have members that give home lessons. Have a wonderful time.

Dinsky

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Old 03-16-2003, 06:57 PM
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Re: Quilting Beginner here

http://ttsw.com/MainQuiltingPage.html
*World Wide Quilting Page*

This is an invaluable resource for quilters of any skill level. :-) There are patterns available, ranging from easy to oh my my, and forums where you can exchange ideas and tips, network with other quilters who are likely in the same situation you are, and ask for help if you get stuck. I've even seen some fabric/quilt block swaps organized online! What fun! *grin* Hope this helps!

--Tandeer

P. S.--The two easiest patterns to start with may be the Irish Chain, and Jacob's Ladder... suggestions only. :-)
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