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Fabric Maverick Says... So You Want to be a Quilter? Let The Quilting 101 Class Begin!

January 15, 2008

Quilting is like golf. It can give you a great deal of pleasure or you will be stomping on your blocks. Once the quilting bug has bitten you, you will become a fabric-holic.

To derive the most pleasure, you must learn 3 skills:

  1. Accurate measuring and cutting
  2. Sewing an accurate 1/4" seam
  3. Learn to press- not iron (Pressing is an up and down motion)

It sounds so easy! More books and articles have been written about these 3 skills than the Fabric Maverick can count.

For new quilters, the Fabric Maverick recommends taking a beginning quilting class at a local quilt store. Sometimes classes are not available at a convenient time. There are classes now available online for beginning to advanced quilters: University Quilting College.  You can even teach yourself how to quilt.  The Fabric Maverick, for the most part, is self-taught. When I first began to quilt, "The Thimbleberries Book of Quilts" by Lynette Jensen and "Quick and Easy Quiltmaking" from That Patchwork Place were great sources of inspiration.   The instructions in "The Thimbleberries Book of Quilts" were easy to follow and had many tips for success throughout the book.  It,also, had many small projects perfect for the beginner.

The Fabric Maverick recommends the following list of tools for the beginning quilter:

  1. Rotary Cutter/Rotary Mat
  2. See Through Rulers: 6" x 24" and a square ruler (12" is a good size)
  3. 1/4" Presser Foot
  4. Thread
  5. Machine Needles (80/12) and hand sewing needles if you plan to hand piece
  6. Seam Ripper
  7. Scissors
  8. Iron
  9. Straight Pins ( I like the flower head pins)

Most of these can be found in our notions section.


List of Do's and Don'ts from the Fabric Maverick:


  • Do practice sewing a 1/4" seam
  • Do prewash your fabric ( the Fabric Maverick confesses she does not wash the light colors, only the dark fabrics)
  • Do press your fabric (Best Press or Magic Sizing restores the fabric finishing before cutting)
  • Do read all instructions carefully
  • Do make a sample block before cutting all the fabric


  • Don't move the fabric when cutting- move the ruler
  • Don't try to make a bed-size quilt. Beginners will become quickly discouraged.
  • Don't choose a quilt class that is above your skill level

Quilting is great fun! You can express your personality and beautify your home through your selection of colors. 

Go Create.


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This page contains a single entry by published on January 15, 2008 8:30 AM.

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