Are you a machine quilter who would like to try hand quilting?
Many people seem to be intimidated by hand quilting, but it is really a simple process that just takes a little patience.
Your reward at the end is a hand made item that is extra special.
There are some considerations to keep in mind when you are choosing your first hand quilting project. If you keep these tips in mind, then your first project will be a success!
1. Keep it small.
I recommend making a small wall hanging or table topper for your first project. Obviously, hand quilting takes longer than machine quilting. If you make a bed sized quilt as your first project, it is likely that you will get frustrated at the time it takes. Start with something small and you can feel the satisfaction of completing your first project quickly!
Another reason to start with a small project is that you are less likely to pressure yourself to make it perfect. I'll be honest with you.....the stitches on your first project will probably not look like the stitches you have seen on hand quilted items at a quilt show. So be kind to yourself. Learn on small projects and before you know it, you will be ready to move on to something bigger.
2. Keep it simple.
Another consideration is the number of seams in the quilt top . Seams don't make a lot of difference when you are machine quilting, however they can make a huge difference when you are learning to hand quilt. Every seam will slow you down and make it more difficult to keep your stitches even. It's not impossible to stitch over seams of course.....they just make it harder. So starting out, its better to use a simple quilt top pattern with large pieces and few seams. A simple oversized block is perfect.
3. Keep it slim
Finally, your choices of fabrics and battings can make your work easier or more difficult. 100% cotton fabrics that are high quality and not too thick will help keep your stitches even. Using fabrics that are light in color and either solid or with a small print will help you see your stitches easily.
The choice of batting can also make your work easier. Choose a batting that isn't too thick. Many quilters enjoy using wool batting, although others like cotton or polyester. However, I think the most important thing when you are starting out is to make sure it isn't too thick.
I hope these tips will help you choose the perfect first hand quilting project. It is a wonderful, relaxing method of quilting that can add a special touch to your quilts.
If you decide to give it a try and have any questions, please comment and I will try to help.