Friday, August 17, 2012

Hand Pieced Quilt-A-Long ~ Hand Quilting

~ Before I start I want to say a HUGE thank you for all of the sweet congratulations about my baby news. Your comments really touched me and lifted my mood. I appreciate them more than you know. So thank you! ~

For those of you doing the hand pieced quilt along with me, I bet you never thought I was going to get to this. A few posts ago I said the next post would be about hand quilting the quilt. I apologize for dragging my feet. The truth is I feel a bit inadequate giving hand quilting instructions. But I will show you what I do and if it is not helpful I'm sure there are much better tutorials around.
A few years ago another (experienced) quilter told me to use needles called betweens or quilter's betweens for hand quilting. I just used any ol' needle I had on hand (still do most times) and they would start to curve after hand quilting for a bit and they would become hard to grip and keep straight. The betweens won't bend after lots of hand quilting, or at least not as much anyway.

When I first started quilting I read a lot of old quilting books. I read repeatedly that for hand quilting the quilt should be basted using thread and long running stitches. I have used this method and don't like it. As I don't use any hoop or frame to hand quilt I have no problems pin basting.

Shall we start? Cut a length of thread about 18 inches. Thread your needle leaving one loose end. Knot your thread at the other end. Insert your needle into the quilt top and into the batting but not the backing fabric about an inch or 2 from where you want to make your first stitch. Bring the needle up at the beginning of your quilting line. I am just outline quilting here.

Give the thread a little tug and pull the knot through the quilt top and bury it in the batting.

Take a few uneven, messy stitches. Just kidding. I like to call them organic. Just kidding. Again.

Quilt in this manner until you come to the end of the area you are quilting or your thread is getting short. Then wrap the thread around your needle twice. Insert the needle where you would make your last or next stitch and pull the needle through the quilt top and into the batting but not through the backing fabric.

Bring your needle up an inch or 2 away and pop the knot through the quilt top.

Bury the knot in the batting. Carefully snip your thread. That's how I do it. If you have any tips, suggestions, words of wisdom on hand quilting please let me know. 

Here are the links for all of the hand pieced blocks:

Block #1 ~ Churn Dash

Block #2 ~ Jacob's Ladder

Block #3 ~ Ohio Star

Block #4 ~ Bear Paw

Block #5 ~ Granny Square

Block #6 ~ Shoo-Fly

Block #7 ~ Card Trick

Block #8 ~ Friendship Star 

Block #9 ~ Square in a Square

Block #10 ~ Log Cabin

Block #11 ~ Flying Geese Pinwheel

Block #12 ~ Honey Bee

The flickr group is here. Come on over and see all the other pretty hand pieced blocks.

Have a great weekend!!!


Oh Sew Nice said...

First I want to say congratulations on your new baby soon to come. I also loved pickles with my last one and ate them with and on everything! Pickle peanut-butter sandwiches and Ruben's with pickles were my favorite! :) I just finished a quilt that someone suggested I hand quilt. I laughed, but then got this emailed to me today. I think I may just try it. Thank you for making it look easy. :)

vintage grey said...

Thanks for sharing a great tutorial for hand quilting!! I need to do my granny square quilt that has been sitting waiting to be done. Do you baste with the backing fabric, too? Have a great weekend! xo Heather

Nisa-mom said...

OMG!! Erin,I'm 3days late, pretty much busy with fast(ing) days..and didn't read your previous post. I'm happy for you, congratulation for your pregnancy. Hope you will always stay healty until the daycomes:)

Jenn said...

Wait, so you don't hand quilt with a frame, hoop, nothing?? You lap quilt? Yay! You are the first person I've met (well, I haven't met you, but you know) aside from myself, that does that. I'm am actually pretty excited about this. I've been lap quilting since I was 18 and haven't found anyone else who does the same. That's all, just excited about this :)

Carla said...

Lovely stitches Erin. Mine are never even!

Quilter Kathy said...

Yep...that's how I do it too. Love your photos!

Anonymous said...

I am a new hand-quilter and I am so enchanted by this sew-along...can I still join, even though, you are ready to quilt? Congratulations on your baby! What a blessing babies are :)

Thank you so much for sharing this...I am excited to begin! :)


Sewn With Grace said...

I just love this quilt! Can't wait to see it quilted. Hope you are having a good weekend! :)

Anonymous said...

You have taken away the fear of hand quilting for me. I really would like to say thank you for this :) I am in the process of finishing my first quilt top and I plan to quilt it by hand once it is done. I pray that you do not take down this post and that the links are still workable when I begin to do the blocks...the whole quilt is going to be done by hand :-D


Lisa in Port Hope said...

If you start with a longer piece of thread, say 36", you pull it halfway into the quilt, then stitch it out...then you go back and stitch the other end. Depends on the pattern you're making.

JenS said...

I am going to use your blocks to try hand piecing for the very first time ever. I'm very excited. :) While going through each block when I got to the dashing and border page it seems me to the quilting page. Do you have a link where I can get the measurements for those? Thank you for sharing these blocks!

JenS said...

Sorry for my phone auto correct. When I try to go to the *sashing* and borders page it *sends* me to the quilting page.

Unknown said...

I have been ask by a family member to hand quilt their grandmothers churn dash hand pieced quilt top. There isn't a flat block in the top lol bless her heart. But my question is where do you quilt the top? In the background areas or along the seam in the churn itself? And will the bubbles eventually lay flat? I hope this post isn't so old that you won't get my message :)

Tammy said...

Did you finish the quilt? I just started hand sewing a queen size quilt for my mom. I want to do it all by hand. Wondering how long to hand sew every thing. I'm being very daring I haven't done this before. BTW it's being done 1 1/2 hexigons. Thx



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