If you are looking to learn how to quilt by hand, it’s important to understand the basics of the craft. By understanding the steps, you’ll be able to make a quilt that is fit for your home and hopefully one you will love for years!
► Step 1: Get a quilt pattern.
There are hundreds of patterns available online, and you can buy them fairly inexpensively. Look around at all the designs that are available so you can find one that catches your eye. Try to avoid ones that have too many seams, such as triangles. They are difficult to stitch by hand because they require you to attach a piece of fabric to two pieces of fabric. A pattern like one with squares will be much easier for the beginner.
► Step 2: Cut fabric.
It is very important that you cut all your pieces correctly before going any further, so it is vital that you know how many squares are in each row before moving forward. It’s easier to do this with a template so that you have some kind of size guide. It may take you some time to get used to the different sizes of fabric, but once you get the hang of it, it will be easy for you. If your fabric is too small, try laying the quilt out flat and cutting out a square at a time. This will ensure that you only cut one piece at a time in order to cut smaller squares.
► Step 3: Sew fabrics together in different rows and then place them on the quilt top to create your first row.
Now that you have all the fabric cut out, it’s time to sew all of your pieces together. Each row is called an “applique,” which means stitched on top of each other, but there are only two ways to do it: “wrong sides together” or “right sides together.
The “wrong sides together” seams are the ones that are seen on the outside of a quilt. If you have an item with a different color or pattern, these are the pieces that will be seen when you look at your quilt. When sewing your first row together, make sure that each piece is facing the same direction so that when you sew it to the next piece, it will indicate which way to keep stitching.
Sewing the “wrong sides together” seams creates a stronger seam, which is better for your quilt or other items that you might want to use the quilt for. When sewing the right sides together seams, keep the pieces even in color and make sure that they are all facing in the same direction so that they match up when they are sewn together. The wrong sides together seams will not have any excess fabric hanging out.
► Step 4: Sew alternating rows together, one at a time (rows are called “applique,” that means stitched on top of each other)
Now that you have your first row sewn together, it’s time to do the same for your other rows. All you need to do is sew two rows together at a time and then keep adding them onto the quilt until it’s complete. There are no hard and fast rules to how you sew rows together, but you want to make sure that the seams match up so you don’t have any exposed fabric.
► Step 5: Sew the last row together (wrong sides together) and trim excess fabric before turning the quilt over and pressing.
Once all of your rows are sewn together, it’s time to take a look at it from a distance to see if there is any excess fabric hanging out. If there is no excess fabric, you are pretty much finished! But if there is a little bit of fabric that is sticking out, it will be longer than you want. You should trim away any excess fabric so that the quilt top has a nice even edge. This will help make your quilt more attractive to look at.
► Step 6: Repeat steps 2-5 for each section (generally about 6 sections for quilts that are 6 feet by 9 feet) until you have completed all your blocks and sewn all your rows. This is where you will add in a border and then your quilt will be done!
If you have made it through those steps, congratulations! You are now the proud owner of a handmade quilt. Use it to keep yourself warm at night or to impress your guests when they come over. No matter what you do with it, your handmade quilt will rival any store bought one and will be something that you can cherish for many years.