Quilting can be very intimidating because crafters think that a lot of intricate skill and precision is required. While this is certainly true of complex designs, there are quilts you can make with no more skill than knowing how to sew a straight line.
Making an Easy Quilt
For beginners, "the easy quilt" is the simplest form of quilting. It requires two pieces of fabric and something to put between the two pieces for weight. These quilts are straightforward, require only a rudimentary understanding of quilting, and allow you to be as creative as you'd like to be when making your quilt. Once you understand the basics, you can create all kinds of beautiful, unique designs.
- Two pieces of fabric, each two yards long and of the same width
- A piece of batting of the same length and width, or four yards of muslin
- Sewing machine
- Coordinating thread
Steps to Make Your Quilt
- Launder your fabrics individually (to avoid color bleed). Pay attention to the care instructions found on the bolt of fabric.
- If necessary, iron all the fabric once it is dry. It makes the muslin a lot easier to deal with if it is lightly pressed, folded in half so that it is basically in the same shape as your fabric pieces, and pressed again.
- Be sure to stack fabric in the right order. Fabric pieces need to be wrong sides together with your muslin or batting stacked on top. When you sew the seams and turn it right side out, the front and back will be on the outside and the filling material will be on the inside.
- Using a coordinating thread, machine stitch three of the four sides, using a straight stitch and a quarter-inch or so seam allowance.
- Turn the piece right side out so you can make sure you haven't missed any layers and that the sewing line looks clean.
- Turn it back around and trim any excess fabric from the seams. You may machine stitch about half of the fourth side before turning it back out and stitching the rest by hand, or you can stitch the whole fourth side by hand.
- Turn the quilt right side out and take time to smooth the quilt and make sure that the muslin or batting is distributed evenly around the quilt. This is the last chance you will get to fix it.
- Sew the remaining side seam closed using coordinating thread and a sharp needle. The preferred stitch for this process is known as a whip stitch, which involves using small stitches stitched somewhat at an angle to the fabric. You only pick up a couple of threads of the fabric when you make a stitch, so it is less visible than other sewing methods. For more information, refer to the hand stitching page, which shows a variety of options for finishing the seam.
- Once you've sewed up all the side seams, you can do any finishing you would like to do. This can be as simple as machine stitching straight lines across the fabric, or you can do something much more decorative. It's really up to you.
Creating a Personalized Gift
This is a great project to do when utility is more important than beauty, but you can also make a quilt like this very pretty. It's the perfect size for a lap quilt, so if you focus on the top stitching, it is sure to be admired. These simple quilts make great holiday gifts. You can finish one in an hour or so (not counting laundry time) and match the fabric to the personality of the recipient.