Hello! Happy Friday! Today’s favorites post is especially for beginners. I often get questions from newish quilters asking about my favorite resources for someone beginning this wonderful past time! So today’s post is part one of a series of beginner posts I’ll be doing which will include tips for more accurate quilting along with some of my favorite supplies and resources. These tools are great if you’re just beginning…or even if you are a more seasoned quilter! Today I’m focusing on tools for beginner quilters.
First, tools! When I was first married, I could never understand why my husband always wanted to spend money on tools. Not until I became an avid
quilter did the “tool” thing finally make sense. There are definitely a few things you need to get started:
First, a reliable sewing machine is a must. Your machine doesn’t have to be super fancy…it’s most important that you just be able to sew an accurate ¼″ seam allowance with a straight stitch. Of course there are special feet and attachments that make things nice, but really…a straight stitch is all you need to worry about. If you are heading out to take a class, make sure you check your machine before attending to make sure it’s in good running order.
When I teach beginner quilters, I see that one of the most common roadblocks to becoming a better quilter is an inaccurate ¼″ seam allowance. For help with making sure your seam allowance is an accurate ¼″…watch this YouTube video I made sharing tips and hints for an accurate ¼″ seam.
Other items you need to get started:
- A good pair of scissors
- Rotary Cutter: the Olfa Splash 45mm Splash Rotary Cutter is easy on my wrists)
- Acrylic ruler Creative Grids 8 ½″ x 12 ½″ Rectangle Quilting Ruler and Creative Grids Quilt Ruler 8-½in x 24-½in are my two recommendations.
- Self-healing Cutting Mat I like Olfa the best, and the Olfa Gridded Cutting Mat-18″X24″ 1 pcs sku 643937MA is a nice size for beginners.
- Pins and pincushion Clover Patchwork Pins-Fine, 100 Per Pack are some of my favorites
- Iron and ironing board
- Seam ripper (Yes, I use one daily…this one is my favorite Clover 482/W Seam Ripper)
- Fabric! I’ll devote a whole post to this one!
Good quality thread is another must-have. I do almost all of my machine piecing with either a neutral off white (Aurifil 2021 Aurifil Quilting Thread 50wt Natural White) or a neutral beige (Aurifil 2000) depending on what fabrics I’m sewing with, but it’s nice to have thread to closely match your binding material when it’s time to finish your quilt. If you pick up a spool with every project it won’t be long before you have a well-rounded thread collection!
Reference Books for Beginner Quilters:
Finally, I want to mention my two favorite resource books: The Quilter’s Ultimate Visual Guide: From A to Z – Hundreds of Tips and Techniques for Successful Quiltmaking (A Rodale quilt book) by Pahl, Ellen published by Rodale Press (1997)
and All-in-One Quilter’s Reference Tool: Updated. The first book is sometimes hard to find, but I mention it because it really does cover a lot of topics in a very clear manner and can often be found in public libraries. The second book is easier to find–it was recently updated and published in this new edition.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this post on tools for beginner quilters! Hope you get to do some fun sewing and quilting this weekend…Thanks so much for stopping by!