Sewing Your First Quilt Block: A Quilting Project For Beginners | Esther Nariyoshi | Skillshare

Playback Speed


  • 0.5x
  • 1x (Normal)
  • 1.25x
  • 1.5x
  • 2x

Sewing Your First Quilt Block: A Quilting Project For Beginners

teacher avatar Esther Nariyoshi, US-based Illustrator

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

11 Lessons (50m)
    • 1. Class Trailer

      3:13
    • 2. Tips For Fabric Selection

      6:38
    • 3. Essential Materials

      1:46
    • 4. Cutting Fabrics

      5:56
    • 5. Block Construction Walk Through

      0:33
    • 6. Common Issues and Fixes

      2:46
    • 7. Sewing Method One (Cut And Go)

      16:33
    • 8. Sewing Method Two (Cut As You Sew)

      2:01
    • 9. Pressing with An Iron

      1:39
    • 10. Next Steps

      5:34
    • 11. Final Thoughts and An Encouragement

      3:36
  • --
  • Beginner level
  • Intermediate level
  • Advanced level
  • All levels

Community Generated

The level is determined by a majority opinion of students who have reviewed this class. The teacher's recommendation is shown until at least 5 student responses are collected.

701

Students

--

Projects

About This Class

777dcbcd.jpg

About The Class

Have you ever wanted to learn how to quilt? Are you interested in taking on a creative hobby and seeing where it takes you? Are you longing for a hobby that is relaxing? This class is perfect for absolute beginners!

Join Esther Nariyoshi for a relaxing sewing journey for making your first quilt block. All students are invited to download the free PDF guide in the Resources Tab that covers all the key points of the class, as well as a quilting pattern for a baby quilt if you choose to take your new skills to the next steps.

This class includes lessons that cover:

  • Materials
    • Esther includes only the absolute essentials to get you started
  • Common Issues and Fixes
    • So that you can hit the ground running as soon as possible
  • Basics of Cutting Fabrics
    • Tips for quick and precise cutting
  • Block Construction Walk Through
    • Helps you understand how the quilt block is made, and the sewing order for the pattern
  • Sewing With Method One
    • Cut and Go. A method that cuts all the pieces up front and sew the block in one sitting
  • Sewing With Method Two
    • Cut as you Sew. A more intuitive method for all the visual makers
  • Pressing 
    • Special tips for pressing a quilt block flat
  • Next Steps
    • For those of you who would like to take the block further to make a baby quilt
  • Final Thoughts And An Encouragement
    • Honest 6-year-old's thoughts on quilts and making quilts

--------------------------------------------------------

Find Esther Nariyoshi

Illustration Portfolio

Instagram @esther.nariyoshi

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Esther Nariyoshi

US-based Illustrator

Top Teacher

 

 Esther Nariyoshi is a US-based Illustrator and designer. Her art has been licensed to multiple companies, including Cloud9 Fabrics. Her art has been featured by UPPERCASE Magazine and was selected as Top 100 Surface Pattern Designers in 2019 by UPPERCASE Magazine. Her creative design projects are also featured by Spoonflower Blog, Skillshare Blog, Print and Pattern Blog, etc. 

Her style is playful, and whimsical yet with a purpose. She is a wizard in vector drawing, and digital painting yet manages to give intriguing texture to her creative illustrations. Her artistic point of view is influenced by the diverse cultures she has lived in. 

See full profile

Class Ratings

Expectations Met?
    Exceeded!
  • 0%
  • Yes
  • 0%
  • Somewhat
  • 0%
  • Not really
  • 0%
Reviews Archive

In October 2018, we updated our review system to improve the way we collect feedback. Below are the reviews written before that update.

Why Join Skillshare?

Take award-winning Skillshare Original Classes

Each class has short lessons, hands-on projects

Your membership supports Skillshare teachers

Learn From Anywhere

Take classes on the go with the Skillshare app. Stream or download to watch on the plane, the subway, or wherever you learn best.

Transcripts

1. Class Trailer: [MUSIC]. I've always been interested in quilting, but never really made one until 2020 rolled in. All of a sudden, quilting has become an essential creative practice for me. I finished five quilts between March and October, along with so many other quilted objects around the house. [MUSIC]. Quilts are stories, it only gets richer by the day. Anywhere from the maker's first touch of fabrics to years or even generations of memories after a quilt is made and every stitch in-between. [MUSIC] Hi, my name is Esther Nariyoshi. I am an illustrator based in the US and also a top teacher here on Skillshare. Normally I teach illustration-based classes but if you haven't figured it out already, I also really love quilting. In this class, we're going to learn how to quilt one of these blocks together. I'm going to show you a few tips on how to select your own fabrics. I will also show you steps on how to cut your fabrics. We're going to go over to our sewing machine and learn how to sew one of these blocks in two methods. This class is designed for students who are new to quilting. We will cover the fundamental skills you will need to complete this block. This class is not about science or precision, it's about crafting as a creative expression from one hobbyist to another. The only required skill you'll need is to know how to sew a straight stitch on your sewing machine. I will provide a PDF guide that you can download from this class that covers all the key points we talk about in class together with one coloring sheet that you can use to plan out your quilt. By the end of the class, you should be able to know how to sew one of these blocks and then maybe turn into a pillowcase or if you have a few minutes to spare, you can totally make a few of those and put them together as a baby quilt. The skills you pick up from this class can be easily applied to many other sewing projects. It's such a great feeling to have handmade items around the house. What a gift it is to have a creative practice that allows your mind to wind down and relax at the end of the day. I hope this class opens a door to a new world as quilting did for me. I hope you are on board. Let's get started. [MUSIC]. 2. Tips For Fabric Selection: I think fabric stores are one of the most dangerous places in the world because you can never come out empty-handed. We can always think of a project later. This is just the little task block that I made. All we need for this little block is three colors of fabrics. Let's have a quick overview of our colors. In this particular case, we have our color A, color B, and color C. Next up, I will walk you over some of the ways that I use to choose the colors of my quilt. There are certainly other ways to approach the process. My goal is to give you some initial inspiration to get the process started. I promise I won't go super technical on you. But I will talk about the color wheel. This is a color wheel which you can find easily by a quick search. It's basically a rainbow of colors arranged in a circle. We'll need to borrow your hand to do a pair of bunny ears with me. I know it's a bit silly, but essentially this helps us to narrow down to a smaller range instead of looking at the whole rainbow of colors. For example, if you were to stop right here, you have some red, some orange, and some orange-red. These are great neighbors that work well with each other. Like this color group that I pulled together, they are all on the warmer side of the color wheel, which will make a great fall-themed color group. They also beautifully vary in saturation as well, which creates additional contrast. Similarly, we have a cooler group over here. There is a light blue, a sky blue, as well as a dark blue with a slight touch of green. Now I'm going to show you some other examples with prints. I put each group together based on general color temperature. They all fall more or less into the bunny ears method. As you get more comfortable choosing colors, you can also expand your angle to include more colors. Like the example in this group, we have the range expanded from yellow all the way to red. They work in harmony with each other instead of competing like a capella. The next group is also very interesting. It's on the colder side of the color wheel. The first two prints are not designed by the same designer, but I feel like they do work well with each other. The first print is designed by Dylan M., who is also one of my favorite Skillshare teachers here. Her print has a creamy color as a background and also has blue clouds sprinkled here and there. The general size of the motifs are on the smaller side, which provides great contrast with the print next door. Interestingly, the second print has blue as a background and has white as an accent color. In terms of scale, it's much larger than our first print, which provides great contrast. Last but not least, the dark solid blue pulls everybody together. Since we're talking about composition and scale, let's check out this group. The first and the third print come from the same collection. As you can see, there's a great color harmony already. In scale-wise, they also complement each other, so they're not competing for your attention. I just added a simple cream color to break it up a little bit. This is one of the advantages of choosing prints from the same collection. Ideally, the surface designer has already worked through the colors, the scale, and composition, and all that good stuff, so your fabrics look great next to each other. This little block also has prints from the same collection, so the color B, which is the smaller l in the middle, and the color C, which is the frame. They both come from the same collection, so it makes pairing a lot easier for me. Like I said earlier, there are definitely more than one ways to choose your fabrics. For example, I have a very interesting combination over here that I want to talk you through it. In this color group, we have a bright red and white with some gold metallic, and two shades of green. If we take out our color wheel as the reference, you will discover that the red and green are on the opposite side on the color wheel. There are by no means next-door neighbors. But also when I look at the red and the green, I think about Christmas and all the joyful emotions that come with it. Even though color-wise they are not close to each other, but thematically these colors work well with each other. Because I believe human minds are wired to look for meaning. Quilting or creative expressions in general is storytelling. If the color story makes sense to you, I'd say go for it. Hopefully, you're inspired to select your own fabrics. Think about the person that you're giving this cloth to. It could be yourself or your loved ones, friends, or it could be a total stranger. Think about the stories that you want to tell through this, or what experience do you want to offer? Do you want to use fun fabrics that kids can stare at it for hours? Or do you want super bumpy textured fabric that you can run your finger through? There are many factors that you can take into consideration. Just have fun in the process, and I will see you in a bit. 3. Essential Materials: In terms of materials, it's very simple. I intentionally only included the essentials so you don't feel like you have to get everything before you even get started. First, what we need is you're cutting tools. I'm going to use my rotary cutter and a quilting ruler. I will say that the quilting ruler is very central because quilting rulers are different than regular rulers. There are in general, thicker than regular rulers. The thickness will hold the rotary blade steady when you cut through the fabric and that's very important for safe and precise cutting. When you cut through your fabric, make sure you cut away from your body and of course, we need our threads. It can be synthetic or cotton, whatever that is accessible to you. Underneath everything. I have my cutting mat. This is just to protect the surface that I'm cutting on. You might have noticed that I have the little white squares under one of my rulers. These are just basic first aid fabric. It's fabric with adhesive on one side. This provides a bit of friction so that my ruler doesn't slip easily. Of course, we have our fabrics and our sewing machine right here. You can't really see the sewing machine in this section, but I'm pretty sure you will see plenty of it later on. Next, we're going to move on to cutting our fabrics. 4. Cutting Fabrics: In this lesson, we're going to cut our fabric together. I think it might not be a bad idea to watch the lesson from the beginning to the end before you cut, especially if this is your first time. It will just help you to mentally prepare what to expect. This is a quarter of a yard. The shorter side measures about nine inches wide. It extends through the entire fabric, which has about 42 inches. This particular fabric has prints on it, which means that it has a pretty sight and also a backside. If you are using a solid color fabric, both sides look the same. Before we start cutting, you want to make sure there's no hard deep creases in. If it's necessary, it might be a good idea to use your dry iron to press it down on the creases. My fabric seems to be fine, so I'm content with just stroking with my hand. Once it's flat, I'm going to fold it again and then cut through the four layers. If all possible, give your rotary cutter of fresh blade. It may not be a big deal administratively, but he makes such a difference when you cut through fabric with a fresh blade. It feels like butter and plus it's safer when the weight is sharp because you don't have to use a lot of effort and it just does what it's supposed to do. When you buy fabrics from the store or online it usually comes with salvage, like this little edge over here. It gives you the information about the designer, about the fabric manufacturer, the colors, and the collection name. I have folded my fabric twice over here. It is very important that the two folds are parallel to each other. Feel free to use the quilting ruler to make sure that the two-fold lines are parallel to each other. All right, with that being taken care of, let's start cutting. Our job right now is to find one horizontal line from the ruler and align that line to the fold line at the bottom. It does help if you have another set of ruler. So what I'm going to do here is to put my two rulers back to back and use the ruler on the left as a guide to make sure the bottom of my fabric fold line is perpendicular to the cut line I'm about to make. Once things are lined up, you can get started. I am right-handed, so I am going to use my left hand to hold the rulers in place and then make a cut line on the right. It is super helpful if you're blade is very sharp. In this way, you don't have to exert yourself to cut through the layers of fabrics. Right now I'm cutting through four layers, but I usually cut through six or even eight layers at a time. Our little block doesn't have a lot of cuts, but when you follow a more complicated pattern, it is really helpful if you can batch cut a lot of layers at a time. I also like to have a tiny jar within reach to basically hold all my scrap fabrics over time when you cut through different colors of fabrics, this little jar can be really pretty. I also like to save a slightly larger scrap fabric, which is bigger than my thumb to avoid nesting and bunching. I will show you all the details when we get to the sewing machine. So now we have a clean edge on the right. I'm going to start making my cuts because I am right-handed, so I am going to rotate my fabric 180 degree. I do want to be careful when I do that so the layers of fabric doesn't shift. After we made the rotation, that clean edge would be on the left. So I'm going to carefully align my ruler to the left edge. My ruler happens to be three inches wide, which makes it super convenient. If your ruler is larger, you want to make sure you count three inches from the right to the left to make your cut. Again, you want to cut away from your body. If this is your first ever quilting experience, you may have to remind yourself every time you cut, but once a good habit is formed you don't even think about it again. Now we have a three-inch strip. What I'm going to do next is to cut off the salvage. Find the two ends of the fabric and align the two layers well, and then align the bottom of the fabric with one horizontal line from your ruler and then just make the cut. So this is how we cut our fabric. We're going to repeat this process to cut all the pieces that we need. If you need all the measurements, feel free to refer to the PDF from the class resource area, and I will also keep it on screen for you to refer. The process is essentially the same. Just remember if your fabric has a lot of wrinkles and creases, feel free to give it a quick press to make sure it's relatively flat. By the way, all the pieces have the same width, which is three inches. For color A, we need three pieces, which is these guys, and for color B, we only need two pieces. The rest is for color C. I'm going to play some music for a quick minute with all the measurements on the screen so that you can gather all your materials and start cutting. 5. Block Construction Walk Through: [MUSIC] Now with all the pieces ready to be assembled, let's talk about colors one more time before we head to the sewing machine. We will start with the color A, which is the little square, and then grow an L around it where the color B. Then go back to color A for a bigger L. Then last but not least, we will add a frame with the color C. That's what we're going to do next. 6. Common Issues and Fixes: [MUSIC] In this lesson, we're going to talk about some common issues and their fixes. On the table, we have three samples. The one on the left is what a healthy seam line should look like. This stitch length is pretty even and there's not a whole lot of creases created by the stitches. The tiny waves can be ironed down pretty easily. The second sample has a lot of ruffles created by the stitches, this is because the thread tension is set too high. You can see the ruffles on both the front side as well as the backside. To fix that, you might want to take a look at your sewing machine manual and to dial down the tension. You may need to experiment different numbers in order to see what works best for you. As you might have guessed it, the next example shows you what that looks like when the tension is too low. You may look okay on the front side, but the stitches appear to be a bit wobbly. As you flip it over, you will see this super long thread that has been very loosely held by threads from the other side. If we compare this one with the healthy one, which is the one on the left, the healthy one looks like it has dashed lines. There are tiny gaps in between each stitch. That is because the thread from the other side is pulling the front side down, and you should look the same when you flip it over. When the tension is too low, you can see the thread is not being pulled down and this is from the backside. [NOISE] There is another scenario that I come across quite often. It is called nesting or bunching. It usually looks great from the front but when you turn it over, you can see this thread mass like bird nest on the back. Fortunately, there is a very easy fix, so what I will do is to grab some of my scrap fabric, usually the salvage, I'll have my sewing machine sew over this piece of fabric first and then use this as a handle to pull my threads away from my actual fabric. So it has less chance of creating a nest on my actual quilt top. These are the common issues that I face when I quilt, I thought it would be helpful to talk about it beforehand so that you have extra peace of mind when you head to the sewing machine. 7. Sewing Method One (Cut And Go): In this section of the class, we're going to put all the pieces together with our sewing machine. But before we even turn on our sewing machine, let's talk about seam allowance. Seam allowance is the distance between the sewing line and the edge of the fabric. It's common to use a quarter-inch as seam allowance for quilting. I'm going to show you what I mean by using this quilt block that I have tested. As you can see, we have a white sewing line and the distance between the line and the edge of the fabric, it's about a quarter-inch. Go ahead and grab a scrap piece of fabric to play on your machine to make sure the seam allowance is a quarter-inch. If you have been sewing for a while, you may have heard some people say scant quarter-inch, it basically takes the thickness of the fabric into consideration and make the seam allowance slightly thinner so that when you fold over your fabric, you don't lose the length of your block. But as far as our class is concerned, we're going to use just a straight, a quarter-inch. I'm going to use a warmer palette for our demonstration because it contrasted the colors around it better. Both of our prints have the print side, which means that there is a right side and a wrong side. We want to fold the pretty side, the print side, facing each other. Then just sew a quarter-inch seam. This is pretty fairly straight. Just a line on our fabric. We're going to use a little scrap fabric to avoid nesting. I'm going to set up my needle first. Right now over here, I have a quarter-inch, which means that the distance between the needle on a plate is a quarter-inch. I'm going to put my little test fabric underneath and go over a few stitches. Then I'm going to raise my needle bar and the presser foot. What I want to do is to just pull my little fabric over. By doing that, I also have my threads, both of the threads pulled over. Then I want to align the right side of the fabric to the right side of the presser foot. This is pretty good. I have my stitch length as 1.8. It's on a tighter side, but that's how I like it. I'm going to start sewing this straight through. You should have a little square and a little tail. I'm just going to cut it off on the side of my machine. You can use this for the same purpose next time as well so I will leave it on my machine. Right now, I'm going to hand press it. What I'm going to do is to leave the darker side of the fabric and then just gently flip it over and then press down. I'm not trying to stretch my fabric. I'm just creating a crease. Like how you fold paper. Gently press it down. There are two ways to press our seams, some people like to open them. This one will actually give you a flatter seam. But I like to press to the darker side because this will make your quilt a bit stronger once it's done. It does have a little bit of [inaudible] You can tell. There is a bit of texture, but I think it's pretty charming. The next thing we want to do is to align this with this fabric. This is the color B. What we're going to do is like what we did before, flip it over to make sure the right side is facing each other. The right side are facing each other and we want to align the top. And then I have already pulled my little thing right here. I'm just going to stitch it over. Make sure the right edge of my fabric, align with the presser foot. I'm going to stitch through, cut my threads and then cut that little tail. This is what we got. I'm going to do the same thing. I'm going to flip it over and then just gently, gently press it. Sometimes people like to set the seam, which just mean that you can have your hot iron, just press your seam down to set the seam in place. But our block is small enough, so I like to do it at the very end. This is our growing block. We have color A, color B. Now we're going to go back to color A, find the shorter one, and then attach to the left side. Just flip it over. I can already feel that it flipped over as the seam travels. I'm going to adjust it to make sure it stays the same. And then have the darker side up facing up. Then gently, gently flip it over and press it down just using our fingers. You can use an iron if you want. But I think this block is simple enough that we can do it at the very end. Let's go to this bottom portion of the L. This is the last piece of our fabric A. Same alignment. This time I'm going to sew it with the seam facing up so I can keep an eye on the direction. You're free to adjust it and stop the needle at any point. It's not uncommon to see your precisely cut strips peek over like this. This is because fabrics has their own thickness. When we fold the seams over it loses a small portion of its length. Some people use a scant quarter inch, which means that the seam allowance itself is slightly smaller than a quarter-inch, but when you fold it over, you precisely lose a quarter-inch, which basically means that your seam allowance is maybe two threads smaller. But as far as our class is concerned, we're going to stick to a quarter-inch seam. We're going to cut this. We're just going to cut it off and put it in our little jar and then keep on going. Next step, we're going to attach the sides. This is going to be the 10.5-inch strips. We should have two of them and we're going to attach them to either side. The process is completely the same. Just make sure your seam allowance is consistent throughout. If you feel the block is too big to handle, feel free to use a clip or a pin to hold the fabrics together. One or two should be sufficient for our project. Then add another clip here just to hold it in place and then do my little. Raise your needle bar and press your foot, pull it to the back, and then feed my block. When things are just misaligned and you can just tip over your fabric a little bit with your fingernails and [inaudible] scooch over. Take your fabric to scooch it over. Similarly to the previous block, I will flip my seam to the less bulky side. Just push it a little bit, and then just press it down. Now here is the upright version and we're going to attach to the right side. This should be the same process. Sometimes I like to use the presser foot as a pin. When I lower the presser foot, it will hold both layers of fabrics together. Then I will work on the alignment for the rest of this section with pens and clips. It's almost like having another hand helping me to hold it. Let's take a look. On this one, we can flip it over, press our little seam. This one needs a little squaring as well. When I was cutting my fabric, I saw that I actually left a bit of salvage over here, but I know for a strip like this, I will probably end up scoring it off anyways. I just loved it that way. Now that is square and similarly, we're going to take care of peeking fabric on the other side. Now we have just one last bit to attach. We're going to do the usual, to attach to the bottom, start from your top. I want to do it on both side and you can start doing your binder clip and then scooch over. Make sure things are not buckled. Let's get started. One last bit. Once both sides are aligned, we can bring our last section of the block to the sewing machine. This one is going to go pass two seams so slow down when you are closer. There is something so therapeutic about the sound of a sewing machine. It's a tangible sound of a creative act. So musical and very relaxing at the same time. That is our little block. Next up, we're going to bring it to the ironing table and make it flat. 8. Sewing Method Two (Cut As You Sew): [MUSIC] In this lesson, we're going to talk about an alternative approach to building your blocks. Over here, we have a beginning of a new quilt block. I have a three inches by three inches, two blocks sewn together and underneath instead of having a precisely cut rectangle, I have a long strip. This is still three inches tall or three inches wide, but this tail drags on. What I'm going to do next is to cut this strip and to make sure my new cut line align with the edge of the fabric over here. So this method is basically cut as you sew. I really like it because you don't have to do all the cutting upfront. You can just visually see where the fabric needs to be cut and sew as you go. The only downside about this method is that you have to switch between sewing machine and cutting-table constantly. But honestly, I don't really mind. To use this method, if your strips run short, you can just sew a quarter-inch seam over here and then press it. So that's what I'm going to do for the rest of the blocks. [MUSIC] 9. Pressing with An Iron: In this lesson, we're going to talk about how to press your quilt top to make it flat. I'm using a mat on my regular table, but you are welcome to use whatever surface that can take heat. You want to set your temperature to the appropriate range for your material. My fabrics are made of cotton, so I have already preheated my iron to the cotton level. Pressing a quilt is different than ironing a shirt because when we press a quilt, we don't want to have the iron move around on top of the quilt. We want to press it down straight because when we move our iron on top of a quilt, it will stretch the fabric, and we want to keep it as rectangle or square as possible. The motion is straightforward. Lift your wrist and put it down. The goal of pressing is to make sure our seams are as flat as possible. Apply a bit of pressure on one seam for a few seconds before we move on to the next one. Also, you may want to turn off the steam option from your iron so that it doesn't warp your fabric. That's pretty much it for pressing. Now we have a finished block. In the next lesson, we're going to talk about what's next. 10. Next Steps: The project for [MUSIC] this class is to make one block. If you have already done that, congratulations. This is a really big deal. I am super proud of you. From here, if you're going for practical, you can use the same sewing method to make a pillowcase, or if you're going for conceptual, you can buy a large frame that is big enough for your block and frame it on your wall as a piece of art. Or you can even use washi tape to tape it to the wall. For those of you who are curious about next steps, if you were to take your block and turn it into a baby quilt, I'm going to speak through some of the steps on a very high level in this lesson. Each step I'm going to mention in this lesson may take hours for a first timer. In our resources area, you can download a PDF guide that will give you some of the basic instructions. If you are going to make a baby quilt, you will need three kinds of fabrics and one yard for each. In addition, you will need some fabrics for binding, which I will leave all the specific measurements in our PDF guide. For the fabrics for our blocks, you will need to cut all the fabrics into three inches strips. For the binding fabric, you cut it into 2.5 inch strips. We're going to use the second method which is cut as you sew to finish our baby quilt. If you look at the instruction, we will need 12 blocks, six of them are will have darker frame, and six of them will have lighter frame. I really recommend you to take advantage of the coloring sheet so that you can use the actual colors of fabrics that you have chosen, which will make your quilt assembly a lot easier. You can just go ahead and make six of darker frames and six of lighter frames. Once you have 12 blocks, you can really play with the composition. I really encourage you to play with the composition so the result looks more fun. Then once you are done with the result, you can go ahead and put all the blocks together using the same piecing method that we have covered. Because our class focuses on making one block, I will not spend a whole lot of time or walking you through every single details of making an entire quilt, but I will give you a bird's-eye view of what are the next steps, what to expect. Once the quilt top is made, which is all the 12 blocks being sewn together, that is called a quilt top, you will need to make a quilt sandwich, which is three layers of things. The top layer is your quilt top, and the second layer is called batting. I almost always use cotton, and the third layer is called backing. It's usually just one single pattern of fabrics. Depending on the size of your quilt, you might need to put two pieces of fabric together of the same pattern. The batting and the backing fabrics are usually larger than the quilt top. Maybe leave four inches margin on all four sides. Sometimes things shift when you are stitching through multiple layers so you will not run out of the backing or the batting. Once you have the three layers on top of each other, just use your hands to make things flat to make sure you don't have deep creases. Now the next step, it's called basting. There are different methods of basting. Some people use spray, some people use large stitches. I like to use pens for my basting, and they're generally about 4-5 inches apart from each other. The purpose of basting is to prevent your quilt sandwich from shifting as you stitch through three layers. Once you're done with basting, the next step is called quilting. It is actually stitching through three layers. Depending on the batting that you purchased, it will ask you the maximum length between each quilting line. Usually it's 4-8 inches apart, do not go larger than that. I like to have my quilt lines really close to each other so that the quilt will not go undone after many washes. Once the quilting is done, you can use the same cutting method to square off your quilt. This basically means that you cut your quilt into a rectangle so that you can start binding. The very last step is to attach the binding to your quilt's rectangle. Like I said earlier, this is a very high level overview. Speaking from my own experience, I'm not a very patient person, but I really enjoy making quilts. It will be the time well-spent. 11. Final Thoughts and An Encouragement: If you have never made a quilt before, this process can seem really intimidating. I want to encourage you to just go ahead and take your first step, and then the next step. Think about one small step at a time. Don't think about a giant quilt of king size. It is pretty overwhelming to think big. This is a time between you and your sewing machine. This is time to watch your favorite show or listen to your favorite podcast, and just let your mind relax. My kids have never complained that the stitch length is not perfect on their quilts, or their quilts are buckled, or the stitches aren't straight. They have never complained about that. If you were to come to my house today and look super close to my quilts, you will discover tons of so-called mistakes. At times when you make quilts, it may feel frustrating to not have things look the way you want them to. But really at the end of the day, it is the memories that you made with the quilts that matters. Don't let the voice of perfectionism stop you from making your first quilts. In the next few minutes, I will share with you a short interview that I had with the mysterious six-year-old. I hope you find some humor and encouragement there. What are quilts? They are things like blankets. What do you like about them? They are pretty. What's your favorite quilt? My quilt. Can you describe to people who can't see what your quilt looks like? It's pink and white, and it has green and it has some other colors. It's made of fabric. Does it bother you that the stitch length is not consistent on your quilt? No. Does it bother you that some stitches are not straight? No. What do you like about quilts? They keep you warm, but if you're not wearing your short sleeve, it is a tiny bit cold. If you were to make a quilt of your own, what does it look like? Can you tell us? Pink. One last question. What do you want to say for people who are scared of quilting? To try it, before you say you can't do it.