Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Things I'm Learning #1

I'm learning so much as I begin this new craft! I can't believe I resisted quilting for so long. Here are some things I've learned - some through trial and error, others from books, websites, and blogs.

1. Continuous chain piecing - This was a "duh" moment for me. I put the first top together last month, which was the very first thing I EVER sewed, and did it without continuous chain piecing. Can you imagine how long that took? Monday night I was doing the little tiny squares for my chocolate box quilt, and realized I could do it a different way. Wow! I put all the tiny squares together in fraction of the time it took last month on that other top. Today I learned what it was called, (slowly acquiring the new language of quilting...) and that lead to learning the next thing:

2. Leaders and enders. I love Bonnie Hunter's site! I have a box started of 3" charms that I'll be adding to thoughout the year as I do a charm swap on one of my Yahoo groups, and I'm going to use those for leaders and enders.

3. Post-It notes - since right now I don't have a seam guide on my machine. I used blue painter's masking tape when I did my first top last month, and had a lot of unevenness to it since I'm so new at sewing. I made the switch to a little Post-It note stack after reading about using them or foam core, and my edges are even and I'm not intimidated by the little squares.

4. (Probably the most significant one) Keeping my scraps. Duh! As Bonnie pointed out, my scraps are worth $8-10 a yard, too! I can't believe I was throwing them away. Stupid me.

I'm sure there will be so much more to write about - like when I finally learn how to do binding; triangles; appliqué; borders; and so on and so on.


Annie said...

That's a nice list of tips. Isn't the net wonderful for picking up all these tidbits?

Anonymous said...

Wait until you start collecting stash! I learned everything I know about quilting on the internet. I am self-taught. You just have to keep trying everything. The only thing I'm not fond of is applique. I avoid it like the plague, but I'll do it if I have to. There are tons of nifty notions out there for us quilters too, I have tons of them, I think my favorite is That Purple Thang, I think everyone should have one of those! You might want to get one if you're still having a hard time getting your 1/4 seams.

Cindy F. said...

Girl, you're doing great!! Sounds like you're going to do incredible things with that sewing machine!!
Hey, in quilting class, the instructor made us use masking tape (several layers cut into a strip)even though we had seam guides. The continuous chain piecing is a good thing and you're right...fabric ain't cheap!!
I love your enthusiasm!!

MysteryKnitter said...

I am happy for you. You're learning fast.