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How to Sew Quilts
June 7, 2012 Sophie has just accepted a new challenge in her learning how to sew quilts journey...joining a "Block Swap" with the Lake Gogebic Community Quilters. Since I have learned how to sew quilts, I have met so many wonderful people who are willing to help me in any way they can with my quilting. Taking on this "Block Swap" is another opportunity to learn some new tips or techniques to use, as I continue on my journey on learning how to sew quilts. Now I have two projects going. Constructing blocks for the lap quilt that I'm making through my quilt lessons, and also finding a 12 1/2" block pattern and some fall colored fabrics for quilting. How do you go about finding 12 1/2" block patterns? The group I just started quilting with in Minnesota, was talking about all the free quilt patterns that are available on the internet. My mission tonight, will be to go on line to find a 12 1/2 inch block suitable to my skill level, that I have not constructed before...that should be easy since I have only made three blocks since starting. After the busy day at work and sitting in slow moving traffic due to an accident, home at last! I put on my comfy sweatpants and a T-shirt and started supper. When I finished eating and cleaned up, finally sat down to enjoy what was left of the evening. I started looking on the internet for the free quilt patterns to find a 12 1/2" block, and became overwhelmed by all the patterns available. This was going to take more than one evening to find something that could be used. The 10:00 news was coming on and I was having a hard time keeping my eyes open. It's time to shut down my computer and call it a night! Since learning how to sew quilts, have you challenged yourself by trying new patterns or techniques? (see "Leave a Reply" below) Visit us at QuiltAddict.com to see why Quilting is...."A Great Habit"!
May 11, 2013
When you first learned how to sew quilts, were you taught the difference between pressing and ironing? Using the proper technique can make all the difference in how your quilt blocks come out.In my early years of quilting, my quilt blocks sometimes turned out slanted and I couldn’t figure out why. My borders were not always straight on the edge after using my iron and I couldn’t figure out why. Bingo! The light finally came on one day when I realized I was not “pressing” but I was “ironing”! There is a big difference. When you have completed your piecing for your block, you first of all should “set” your seams, as is shown in the Pressing Tip video (below). Once this seam has been “set”, you then need to flatten the seam by pressing the seam to one side. By pressing in an up/down method, you should eliminate any distortion of your block. [youtube]http://youtu.be/0ZHwOhNZB-4[/youtube] When you iron your blocks, you are dragging and pushing your iron across your fabrics and this has a tendency to really distort and misshape your work. This is not what you want. Personally, I will “iron” my large pieces of fabrics prior to cutting them, but always try to “press” my blocks and my quilt as it progresses to a finished project. It also helps if you have a good iron. I like to use steam so I look for an iron with many steam holes on the bottom plate. I am one of those people who will press my fabric to death because I don’t want any wrinkles in it. Sometimes we have fabrics for quilting that just do not want to cooperate and we need to offer them a little help with products such as “Best Press”.
March 26, 2012 Have you ever done something that you wouldn’t in a million years have thought you would do? I have. I am writing Blog Postings! My husband and children were quite surprised when I broke the news, and thinking back, I do believe I even received a few chuckles! Can you imagine that - do they think I’m too old to learn something new? Hopefully I can prove to them that I’m not “over the hill” just yet. My name is Sharon, and I’ve been pulled into the 21st Century by LeeAnn and Doug. They asked me to assist them with their new website, QuiltAddict.com. I’m happy to join all of you in the “blogging world”, and hope to hear your ideas and comments in the future on the various topics that will be covered on this website. How do you like my "1st quilt" made out of POLYESTER maternity tops? It was a great beginner quilting project, plus I recycled my tops that I didn't think anyone would have wanted! I’m a self-taught quilter and have learned many things over the years, mainly through trial and error. I am now teaching quilt lessons and have come a long way since my first quilt (which was made with my polyester maternity tops – it might be considered “ugly” by some as you can see in the photo, but it is still cuddly and warm and will probably never wear out). How and when did you Experienced Quilters learn how to sew quilts? Do you have photos you would like to share? Do you need formal quilt lessons to learn how to sew quilts? No, but they are helpful. If you want to get into beginner quilting, I believe the best initial thing you can do is work alongside others. The best place to start to learn how to sew quilts, is working with a community or church group that makes comfort quilts. Where I live, we have a wonderful group of women who gather once a month to make comfort quilts for those in need. Our Lake Gogebic Community Quilters are awesome – we have been in existence since the Fall of 2005 and have so far distributed over 250 quilts. Our quilts are mainly given away locally, but we have also sent quilts to hurricane victims in Mississippi and flood victims in Iowa. We have had women walk through the door not knowing how to sew quilts and started to help out by ironing, but are now tackling some more complex patterns on their own for themselves or family members. It is very gratifying to know you are providing warmth and sometimes hope, to those less fortunate than you. A big “perk” in joining such a quilting group is the friendships that evolve – and we have “job security” as there will always be a need for quilts! And – it’s the best place to learn how to sew quilts. Last week, I met someone new. Sophie was visiting our area and helped our Community Quilters throughout the day and joined us for lunch. Sophie helped some of our Quilters in checking our supply cabinets for the correct fabrics for quilting to go with some “works in progress”, or WIPs as we sometimes call them. She also helped out by ironing some of the fabrics in preparation for cutting, and watched how the quilts were machine stitched in the final step. I think we might even interest her in joining a beginner quilting class in the future. She needs to feel a little more comfortable first around all the strange items available to Quilters today. Our quilter supplies can sometimes look a little intimidating, but once a person learns how to use them, they are invaluable! Would you like to learn how to sew quilts? Next week, I’m going to talk more about what can be learned when you help out with community or church quilting groups. Have you ever worked on comfort quilts? If so, let’s hear what they were like and where they ended up. Enjoy your week!