First Time Hand Quilting

Hi friends,

Coming home from QuiltCon really inspired me to try out hand quilting - something I have been scared to do, but in awe of forever. So many quilts in the show had the most amazing hand work - the texture - the imperfectness, I was definitely hooked.

First time hand quilting //

I came home searching for thread and a needle that would work - determined to start right away. I asked my friends at the Aurifil booth at the show what they recommended for hand quilting and they said 12wt would be perfect. I knew I had some of this weight at home - because I received some in some sample packs a couple of years ago and had no idea what to do with it besides maybe embroidery. I found a fun orange red shade and a needle that had a large enough hole to thread and went to work - blindly - wanting to just get a feel for it before I made a commitment to buying proper needles.

I shared what I was working on with you all on Instagram last week - and you had SO much great advice for needles - thread - and how to videos that would give me some advice on how to go about this properly.

First time hand quilting //

The pillow top consists of 1” wide to 2” wide strips of left over solids. I try and keep my scrap bin separated into two bins - solids and prints, to make it easy for quick little projects like this.

I started in the middle where the seams of both halves match up. Knotted my thread and started about an inch from where I wanted my first stitch to show popping my knot through to hide it and then started sewing at the beginning of the seam. Looking back at this now I am happy with my stitches but might mark my lines with a hera marker next time to make my lines a bit straighter. My friend Nydia recommended something called Tiger tape to me - will add a link below - this is skinny tape with lines marking where you should stitch. You can remove it and place it on your next section. I feel like this might be a good addition to my hand quilting stash to help get my rhythm figured out.

I also heard from many of you that drawing a couple of lines on your thumb or finger that lies next to your work helps as a guide for stitching as well! Genius! I wonder how many people out there have actually had this tattooed on their fingers!

First time hand quilting //

Many of you also recommended hand quilting videos / tips from Suzy Quilts and Sarah Fielke.

Suzy has an awesome series on how to hand quilt - that includes videos, tips and even how to choose a needle. This will be my next step - finding out which needle I enjoy using.

Sarah Fielke has a great video on hand quilting techniques for beginners.

Before I dive into quilting an actual quilt I am going to educate myself - will make the process and end result so much better.

Until then, here are some images of my first hand quilted project! I love the texture - I love how imperfect it is - and how I have a fun reminder of the beginning of my hand quilting journey.

First time hand quilting //
First time hand quilting //
First time hand quilting //

Hope you can get past your sewing fears this week and try something new! I was so afraid to try this method thinking I wouldn’t enjoy it but I was so wrong, it’s now one of my favorite things!

Thanks for stopping by friends, have a great week!


PS I am going to leave you guys with my favorite hand sewing item so far - Thimble Pads! You guys - I cannot for the life of me sew with a thimble. I would rather wear a hole in my finger - which I have done - thanks to 1000’s of hexies I have sewn. These little guys stick right to your finger and stay put while you sew - and are not bothersome at all! When you are done just stick back onto the pad and you can reuse a few times.

Adding a link below in case you want to give these guys a go!