10 Suggestions: How to Start

  1. Decide what your budget is for the project.
  2. Sewing machine and basic supplies.
  3. Decide on a pattern or fabric.  Once a pattern is selected, make sure the skill level matches your skill level to avoid any frustrations.  My first quilt had blocks with more than 90 pieces, and I needed 36 blocks!  I almost stopped after a few and thought about taking what I had to make two throw pillows!  Now, I will be honest and sometimes I will turn blocks into something else entirely.  This happens when I get board of the project, or I am simply over it.  I personally feel any completed project is better than a heap of blocks and fabric laying around with what I call “no love”.  But when you’re really wanting to make a quilt, you’ll come up short (disappointed) if that’s not your end game.  So set yourself up for success and pick a quilt pattern you’ll know you will want to finish. I highly recommend that if you are a beginner quilter that it may be best to start with beginner quilter patterns.
  4. If you have not decided on a fabric line or pattern, then consider what was your inspiration to make a quilt and work from that.
  5. Once you have narrowed down what inspired you, you’ll either pick the fabric or the pattern.
  6. If the pattern was picked first, obtain the fabric requirements so you know how much fabric to order.  If it is the fabrics that are inspiring you, you will now need to find a pattern to obtain the fabric requirements to make the quilt.
  7. Inspiration comes in many forms and is part of the creative process.  For inspiration, you can now easily search for quilts and quilting fabrics and find beautiful images on sites like IG, Pinterest, YouTube, and Quilting Websites to name a few.  I still get quilting magazines delivered that are packed full of beautiful quilts and crafty makes.  What is also great about the resources above is that the image you are looking at may offer the information of the pattern name, fabric collection, and where to purchase the items.
  8. Make sure that you tally up all the costs associated with what you want to make before you start to purchase items individually.  For one, you don’t want to be over your budge, and if you are, you may want to look at other options.  Another reason is to make sure you can find things like, background, boarder, binding, and backing fabrics if you want them from the same fabric line or designer.  When I was teaching one young lady how to quilt, she wasn’t sure why I recommended to order a couple extra yards or precuts of fabric (for possible cutting errors, and shrinkage from starching) and to order everything else needed to finish her quilt up front at the same time.  So, I explained by asking some key questions like if it was important that the boarder, binding and backing fabric needed to match? Or, if the fabrics were different but close to matching?  She wanted the fabrics that matched from the same fabric line.  Ok, so my next questions were; are we finishing this quilt when we start it?  Her answer was yes.  Ok, so what is the timeline you would like to have it finished?  Her reply was hopefully within a month.  Ok, then order what you need of the fabrics you want to use now.  She asked why?  My response was that if you don’t, they may no longer be available when you decided to order later, plus it’s an additional unknow cost.
  9. I suggested for this young lady to put the pattern, fabrics, and batting required to finish the quilt from start to finish that she wanted to use in her quilt into shopping carts of where she was purchasing the items from.  This way she knew if what she wanted was available for purchase and she could then add up the totals to make sure the amount was within her allowable budget.  This also decreases stress knowing you have everything you need to finish your quilt and its at your fingertips when you need it.
  10. Please remember that making a quilt for family, friends, or yourself should be an enjoyable process.  Allow your creativity to blossom by planning out the quilt you want to make and the best possible process that fits your needs best. 

I hope these 10 suggestions are helpful and you feel empowered to create!

Reece xx

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