Search This Blog

Friday, June 3, 2011

How to be Awesome at Quilting

One of the things I am determined to be awesome at, now that I have time, is quilting.  I grew up watching my mom make these amazing quilts, and I've always wanted to do it.  The problem is, so far, I find that I don't actually like doing it.  I hate the cutting and the measuring and the way it always gets sewn together crooked, etc.  But I am determined!  So I have enlisted the help of the very awesome Bekah Butler, because she's good at sewing, and really most crafty stuff.

So the steps to awesome quilting, from what I gather, go something like this:

Step 1)  Decide on a quilt pattern.

I did this a while back and made a huge mistake.  Apparently one thing you should know about quilting is that different shapes are different difficulty levels.  Let me break it down:

Squares:  Really easy.  Little kids do square quilts.  Although if you start getting into different sizes in the same quilt, the difficulty increases.

Rectangles:  Pretty much like squares, but a little more challenging to cut.

Triangles:  Woah, Nelly!  You're gettin' into dangerous waters here!

Octagons, pinwheels, asymetrical shapes:  Sweet holy homestead!  Back away!!!  This is only for Laura Ingalls Wilder or the Pioneer Woman!

Circles:  Only Satan himself can do these through unholy rites.

So my first quilt that I tried to do a few years ago was triangles.  It looked cool.  I found great materials, and I started off with gusto.

I did one piece.  It was a disaster.  I gave all my stuff to my mom.

But this time, I decided to go with something easy, like squares.  Specifically, Bekah found a fabulous pattern called a disappearing nine-patch, which you can see in that link.

The reason I like it is because it is supposed to be so easy.  I know, it LOOKS like there are lots of different sizes of squares, which is vastly beyond my ability, and when I first saw it I thought that maybe Bekah didn't understand "I suck at quilting" the first ten times I said it.  But no, actually it's just regular six inch squares that you sew together and then cut apart and then turn it and sew it back together.

I can do that.  If I can't do that, I can't do anything at all.  So that's what we're going for.

Step 2)  Try to find material.

We went to three different stores yesterday to look at fabric.  They had lots of really cute stuff.  The thing is though, once I found out that you can buy fabric pre-cut into quilting squares, it pretty much spoiled my desire for anything else.  (I'll have to do another post some time about not doing more work than you have to.)  So we looked at some cute stuff, but we didn't get much.  I did get ONE piece of fabric that was cute enough that I might be persuaded to cut it myself.  It looks like this:

My idea is to do that fabric with black, white, and red solid squares.  So my goal for today is to look at this sitethis site, and this site that Bekah sent me and try to find some fabric I want.

Step 3)  Decide on Purpose of Quilt.

Yes, I can understand why you would think this should be earlier on the list, but you would be wrong.  Only after spending at least an hour looking at fabric and making decisions about patters should you stop and think, "Hmm...what am I making this quilt for?  Will it be for a baby?  A wall decoration?  A gift?  A random display of awesomness? 

I think I'm going to go with the last one.

1 comment: