7 years ago3.2K views
Quilting: Quilts You Can Make - as part of the expert series by GeoBeats. I remember the first time I wanted to make quilts. I thought, “I will make a really small one,” and someone said, “Actually that is harder, because you are working with all those little pieces.” I would start with a lap quilt. That is a very vague size. It is not as big as a bed quilt; it is not as small as a little wall quilt. I would start really simple, and it can look cool if you have fun with the fabrics that you pick out and the quilting that you do on it, even just something as simple as patchwork squares, just to get a feel for it, and all the different elements of quilting. I think that is the best way to start. I would not dive into anything too complicated at first. Quilting only requires the most basic sewing skills. It is a lot of straight seams, so it is not super complicated. These are larger bed-size quilts. This first one here, I like to call “nested squares,” because it captures the basic design element of it. Making this is very straightforward. I choose about ten different fabrics and cut out six-inch squares from the fabrics, and then from all the bits that I have left over, I cut a variety of different strip lengths, three inches to six inches, and I stitch them around each square in a freewheeling way and after i done that it is altogether forty-eight of these squares, and I make sure as I am going that at least twelve and a half inches the width of square that I am making. After wards, I trim it down to exactly twelve and a half inches, piece together all the different squares, and I just think it is a fun way to do it. This would be a good starting quilt to me because it is pretty basic. It is just patchwork, but I like having all these little squares be slightly off-center. They are not just in the middle with a border around them. I like that they are a kind of funky, off-kilter look. For this one, I used matching color threads again in each component, and I did a basic spiral inside each one of the squares, and then a sort of stippling pattern in the border area around it. When you baste a quilt and you putting the three, you are finished making the top and you are putting the three layers together, that is a challenge with a really big quilt. You are trying to even everything out and keep all the pieces together. It is much easier with a more lap-sized quilt. This one I call “spots and squares.” It is a pretty obvious name. Again, this is just wanting to play with really basic geometric shapes and designs, which is one of my favorite things to do. The background is just very basic patchwork, twelve-inch squares, and I piece them all together. I use the machine to do that kind of basic patchwork. Each of these circles is put on using appliqué, which I always have to do by hand, so I hand stitch around all these edges. I just put the circles at the center of each square and right where they intersect, so it is a very simple design in that sense, and yet I just think it has a really fun effect. I tend to use really bold, bright colors, but for the background patchwork on this one I actually chose more neutral beiges, browns, and really light green, which is not my typically color repertoire, but I thought it made the circles pop in a more fun way. Again for the quilting, the stitches inside each of the circles are just a matching color throughout and they just sort of mirror the circle shape. Then I used one color thread to do sort of a pattern that went around the basic shapes and pulled everything together. This is another one, just very basic patchwork, that I think has a cool effect. Basically, these are all three and a half inch strips, and I just cut a bunch of them. They are about eighteen inches long this way, and there are twenty-six along the width of it. It just all goes together, and I actually did that three different times, and then made these long horizontal strips, and basically just stacked the three horizontal strips, and then these ones perpendicular to it, three more horizontal, and on and on. It is again a very straightforward striped design, but I like designs like that, because you can see here another. It is the same design using different colors, and I think it is fun to have to have these kind of very simple, straightforward designs, and then to see what different effects you can get. I just stuck with all different hues of blue, and then this red and purple color here, as opposed to lots of different colors, and then just the browns right here. When you are working with really basic designs like that, you can really make your work your own depending on the kind of colors that you choose and that kind of things.