Basic Quilting

With basic quilting you will realize there are many ways to arrange your fabric squares, rectangle, strips, or even curves to make a pleasing block.

The right placement of the many sizes and shapes once sewed together will help you achieve your desired results.

Quilters everywhere want to know more about basic quilting and how to place the squares to achieve the most pleasing way to arrange the blocks.  

As you look at quilts when going to shows or simply looking in quilting books or magazines, pay close attention to the many innovative ways that other quilters have chosen to arrange their blocks together.

Basic Quilting with Strips

The log cabin block is often written about in books. This is a clue that the versatility is a favorite for many quilters.

Strips can be used to frame other blocks by adding sashing between each block.

No matter if your strips are 'wonky' the block still seems to be recognizable by most quilters.

This wonky log cabin quilt has irregular flying geese also called half square triangles. There is also a bit of appliqué work involved and curves to deal with.

The most important thing is that a reasonable amount of basic quilting bloopers can become near impossible to see.

Log Cabin blocks look spectacular in fabrics of most any color or style.

 Traditionally, the center square is often red or yellow to symbolize the hearth in your log cabin, but you may choose to use any color.

Fabrics should graduate in color from light to dark, dark to light or randomly.

Neutral thread colors such as taupe or gray are good choices for stitching blocks using fabrics with a variety of colors.

Using a very accurate quarter inch seam is essential, but don’t worry we show you how to do this on our Free quilt pattern LCQ log cabin quilt.

Basic Quilting with Squares and Borders

We are familiar with the dark dull colors set against the dark solid backgrounds of many Amish quilts. 

Well we also know that any Amish quilt is simply basic quilting and piecing and is an ideal way to learn to quilt.

The old fashion quilting frame much like your grandmother and maybe mother used has been the hub of social activity for women for several centuries.

With basic quilting there is only one way and one thing to remember…move the needle up through the layers of fabric and batting only to return the needle down and back up again. Repeat this with several thousand stitches before the quilt has been quilted.

Flawless hand quilting is not to be diminished as very few have mastered this art. Any authentic Amish hand quilted quilt is worth hundreds of dollars and maybe reaching the thousand mark.

Our Free quilt pattern AQP – Amish quilt pattern will show you how to quilt whether working in a frame, in a hoop, or in your lap.

Our world has become very complex with computers and other gadgets used for quilting.

There are so many fancy hand tools used for cutting and measuring that sometimes it feels like we are going round and round just to decide which tool is the best.

Basic Quilting using the Tumbling Block Pattern

A relatively wide diamond template with 60-degree and 120-degree angles is used for making a tumbling block quilt.

This is a trio of diamonds in light, medium, and dark tones to form each hexagonal shape. 

Consistent use of a dark diamond as the darkest third of the hexagon is important. Careful attention is given as to the placement of each diamond so that they are always oriented in the same direction.

You will want our Free quilt pattern TBQ tumbling block quilt designed in the software called EQ7 to make this quilt. At first glance it seems very complicated but it is relatively simple quilting.

The tumbling block tutorial is well worth your time to read and do a sample wall hanging just to familiarize your self with the directions. 

Master the matching and stitching of points and angles. Tumbling blocks is most successfully pieced by hand. 

Pin and stitch along seam lines, from point to point without entering into the seam allowances.

It also helps if the hexagonal blocks are pieced in the same sequence to ensure that light, medium, and dark facets will fall on the same side of each block.

Basic Quilting Using a Nine Patch Quilt

A basic quilting technique to use for simple designs of squares, rectangles, or diamonds is a contemporary technique that relies on rotary cutting and machine piecing.

Once the 42 inch strips (width of most fabrics) are cut straight it is then possible to join the strips back together alternating up to four colors to form nine patches for your Free quilt pattern NPQ nine patch quilt. 

Strips sewn and cut on a 45-degree diagonal will result in sets of diamonds that can be used for blocks like the Lone Star.

Half square triangles can be made from strips cut on the bias.

Printed fabric strips can also be sewn to extend yardage when you didn't quite buy enough fabric to do the job. When this happens you try to match the coding in the selvage so that the seam is barely noticeable. 


Basic Quilting Using The Ohio Star Pattern

This basic quilting pattern is really quick and easy to make. Alternate squares are quilted and the others are pieced blocks using half square triangles. 

The Free quilt pattern S2S - stairway to stars has a quilting motif template for the internal blocks and another template for the borders.

This star block is often called the Ohio Star but it is very versatile. A whole lot of constellation of other star patterns derive their beginning from this star.  

Diamonds or triangles and squares are the building blocks for making a star block. Start with an easier star to gain your confidence and then tackle the Lone Star quilt. This pattern shows you how to stitch the tumbling blocks too.

Basic Quilting With A t-shirt Quilt

As we all know t-shirt material stretches from side to side except for those of us who are well padded…then they always shrink.

The tricot fusible stretches from top to bottom so the two make a good match. 

T shirts stretch left to right and stabilizer goes up and down thus making the two null and void.

The hardest part in making a t-shirt quilt is deciding which logo will blend in or offset all the other blocks.

Generally if one invests in t-shirts they generally have a lot of the same subject matter.

In our example Scooby is an avid sport and plays baseball and basketball. So he has quite a few of the sameness.

But that is OK. One plays for quite a few teams from biddy to senior.  If you have several small designs you can appliqué these on blocks that have a little room to fill.

 Be creative. It is sort of like cut and paste. Cut small designs from several shirts and appliqué them to the part of the shirts that do not have a logo.

You will just throw the backs of the leftover shirts away after you have cut all the blocks you need unless, of course,  you are a pack rat.

After all how did you accumulate enough t-shirts to make a quilt!  Unleash your imagination! 


  • Christmas Tree Quilt
  • Flower Garden Quilt
  • Ladybug Quilt Pattern
  • Return to Keepsake Quilting



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