Thursday, February 14, 2008

Stage 2: Intermediate Sewing

After you experiment with the smaller projects like the potholders & pillows, you’ll feel more comfortable sewing larger projects that require minor piecing or by adding a few frills to the smaller projects.

A crib quilt is a great project that doesn’t make you feel overwhelmed. It’s larger but not too large. Cutting and piecing the small quilts are not very time consuming and rag quilts are the easiest quilts to make. The talk is that rag quilts are very addictive from the first time you make one. Follow this link for free instructions to make a crib size rag quilt (or lap quilt):

This link takes you to a tutorial to make a pillow with ruffles.
This requires a little time and patience to complete, as you will have to adjust the ruffle a few times to get it right. Good luck!

These tutorials can also be used as a guide when you’re ready to make larger rag quilts or to add ruffles to a doll dress or tote bag. Below are a few tips to help you as you start your intermediate projects.

Sewing Tip # 1: Cotton batting, traditional polyester batting and low loft polyester batting are the easiest battings to work with when quilting. Thick batting is springy and causes the quilt pieces to shift.

Sewing Tip # 2: Well, it’s actually a cutting tip. Ü Having the proper tools makes the job of cutting many squares much easier. So to cut squares for those larger quilts that you're going to make, a 36" cutting mat, rotary cutter, and cutting ruler will make the cutting process go much faster.

If you haven’t used these tools before, you will want to practice on scrap pieces of fabric before you try to cut your main fabric. It takes a few tries to figure out how to keep the ruler from sliding (by moving your hand down the ruler as you cut) and how to roll the cutter along the ruler properly (slowly as you move your hand down the ruler). Also be sure the ruler measures the same at the top and bottom of the mat; that can sometimes get crooked if you aren’t careful. If you can’t see the top of the mat because the fabric is covering it, the ruler should have markings on it to help you see if your measurements are correct.

Cutting Tools

Ruler Markings

Pattern Mart offers a wide variety of intermediate projects, from totes to lap quilts to dolls and more. Whatever your next project is, you’re sure to find it at

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