Additional Craft Information:
Quilt making is a process of joining decorative fabrics that are cut into geometric shapes to create a quilt top, adding two or more layers of fabric (a soft fill and decorative backing fabric) then stitching them together as one, using patterns of stitches that are appealing and artistic through all 3 layers. Machine embroidery can simply be defined as the art or skill of decorating fabric with the use of digitized patterns, needles and thread on a computerized sewing machine. Some people prefer to use fabric only to create the different patterns for their quilts, while others use a combination of fabrics and embroidery designs to enhance and beautify the quilt top. By combining these two art forms, the modern quilter has endless choices when creating their quilt embroidery masterpieces.
DIY Craft Essential #1: Washi tape
DIY Craft Essential #2: Needle nose pliers
The method of combining these two popular forms of soft art, embroidery and quilting, is fairly new and a wonderful way to show originality and talent by creating one of a kind Quilt embroidery projects. Also consider use of other materials such as pearls, beads, quills, and sequins, which can enhance the appearance and texture of the quilt and add more dimension to the overall look of the quilted project.
Let's look at a few different types of quilting…
1 Crazy quilting – this is actually a form of piecing and embroidery that is not reliant of any particular type of fabric, or any exact thread or pattern for decorating and does not have strict rules in making it like some the other types of quilting. In fact in this type of quilting, as the name suggests, it is “crazy”… you use any type of fabric such as cotton, velvet, luscious silks, satins and even brocades, any type of thread and stitches, any type of shapes, geometric or not and any type of decoration items such as beads, shell, lace and ribbon, buttons, among others. You can use any combination of materials and techniques to achieve the desired effects. Some of the stitches used for the actual quilting and joining the pieces may include feather stitches, chain stitches, herringbone, blanket stitches as well as many others. You can use all of them, if you like!
2 Machine guided quilting – In machine guided quilting, the machine's feed dogs are used for straight as well as curved lines. In this technique, the walking foot is used and there are almost 12 stitches per inch. This type of quilting gives a more uniform appearance to the quilt and works well for more traditional, geometric patterns.
DIY Craft Essential #3: X-acto knife
DIY Craft Essential #4: Spray paint
3 Free motion quilting – In free motion quilting, the feed dogs are either dropped or covered, for this reason it does not follow a straight path while sewing. In this technique different kinds of feet can be used but darning foot works best. Darning foot jumps along with the needle, this helps in the easy flow of the fabric beneath. By hand guiding the fabric in different directions, interesting and decorative patterns emerge, giving each quilt a unique appearance.
4 Quilting with pre-digitized embroidery designs – There are an increasing number of embroidery patterns specifically made to create quilting on pieced quilt projects on the market. One advantage is you can create very uniform patterns that are more complex in nature, repeating them on the different quilt in sections, thus giving your finished quilt a very professional, polished look.What type of supplies will you need – Machine quilting supplies vary with the kind of machine used, the method you are using and the type of quilt you are planning on making. But here are some very basic tools required:
. Sewing/embroidery machine – there are several computerized machines now available to the home quilt embroidery enthusiast. Start by doing a search online for “embroidery machines” and compare the different brands. Most of them will do both sewing and embroidery.
. Embroidery design patterns – there is an endless assortment of embroidery designs available on the internet now. Do a search for “machine embroidery designs” or visit an online mall like EmbroideryQuilter.com, where there are 100's of companies, producing 1000's of embroidery designs at very reasonable prices.
. Needles – there are several needle sizes and types – check your sewing machine handbook for recommendations of which ones are best on the fabric type you are using.
. Thread – Some quilters prefer to use cotton only, while others use rayon, polyester, silk or a combination of these different thread types. Each has its advantages and disadvantages and it is personal preference that will make the final decision.
. Bobbins – Each machine requires a specific bobbin type. Typically, the bobbin thread is a stronger, thinner polyester blend, but you can also use the same type of thread in the bobbin as you use for the top thread.
. Gloves/grippers – these are very handy in moving the quilted project while sewing.
. Embroidery hoops – these are useful, especially for free-motion embroidery quilting or decorating some of the squares with embroidery designs. The embroidery machines come with hoops and usually have other sizes available also. If you are free motion quilting, an old fashioned round or oval hoop is useful to help you in moving your fabric around by hand.
. Spray adhesive – this will help your fabrics stay in place as you construct your quilt.Darning foot and other embroidery machine feet
. Quilting stencils or fabric pencils – these are very helpful in marking your project for placement.Let your imagination be your guide as you plan your next project. You'll be amazed at what you come up with.