What is quilting? First of all it is a great hobby that lets you create both beautiful and useful things. Quilting is an artistic sewing of fabric material. Sewing the pieces of fabric together (patchwork technique) creates amazing patterns, ornaments and even pictures. These wonderful items are called quilts. Every master combines materials and sewing techniques to create their own masterpiece.
The term quilting combines such types of needlework as patchwork, appliqué, embroidery, and surely sewing. Creating quilts is a very effortful process. Like a pie, a quilt consists of three layers. The first decorative layer is a face of the work. It is made of one-color fabric by patchwork method or applying any other style of needlework. The second layer is filler, which makes the item thick. The third layer is a purl layer. The combining of pieces of fabric is a entertaining process. What can be made with quilting? Quilts in interior: blankets, coverlets, pillows, curtains, carpets, upholster for furniture, pictures, panels etc. Cloth quilts look really gorgeous. Everything depends on you fantasy and complicacy of the item. Samples of ideas and the process of their creating can be found in the quilting ideas section.
History of quilting
Now we will talk about the history of quilting. People used quilting long before Christ. Cloth quilts decorating the statue of Pharaoh were found in Egypt. The popularity of quilted cloth increased in Middle Ages. Quilting was brought to Europe by crusaders from Middle East. Knight used cloth quilts to protect their bodies from injuries. The oldest blanket made using quilting technique that is still remained, is referred to the 14th century. Settlers from England have brought quilting to the USA. A significant fame on the American continent has come to quilting in the middle of the 19th century. It is still popular in our days. Many people all over the world are using this beautiful and handy needlework.
Styles of quilts made
There are three main styles of quilts made. The first is a hand style. It is performed by hands. The second method is machine. And the third is a combination of both styles. The second and the third styles are obviously faster, but a lot of needle masters prefer to use the first one.
Hand quilting demands accuracy and care. It is a very effortful process. A needle with a round tip and narrow eye is used for work. Such needle doesn’t leave any tracks on fabric. The stitch that is often used is called “needle forward”. However more complicated embroidering stitches can be used. It totally depends on a style of composition.
If sewing and quilting are performed by home sewing machine, it is a machine quilting. The needle master should have certain skills of using home sewing machine to make quilts in this style. Different sewing techniques are used. They are selected according to the idea of the item itself. This style demands accuracy and care as well, but in comparison with previous method, it is significantly faster. Machine quilting is better to use either for making large items or for less complicated patterns and big details.
Combining style is the universal style. The work is performed both by hands and using home sewing machine. This style of quilting can be applied to the items of any complicacy.
What tools will you need? You would need paper to make a draft, pencil or pen. The most important thing you will need is the idea of your future quilts.
You will also have to get quilting ruler. It is meant to mark the fabric accurately.
The next things advisable to have are a special knife and recoverable carpet for cutting out the fabric. But if you don’t have those, tailor’s scissors will be enough.
For transferring a contour of image to the fabric the following tools can be used. Flushable markers that are dark and lightly colored can be used. They are easy to be removed by moist fabric or cold water. There are also disappearing markers. They disappear from fabric in 48 or 72 hours. A pencil with brush tip can be used too. The contour is simply erased by the brush. A device for transferring the pattern through tracing paper to fabric called copier.
You need to have set of quilting needles for sewing. The sizes of needles are from number 4 to number 12. Note that number 12 is the smallest size and number 4 is accordingly the biggest. Needles of middle size like number 9 are used most frequently.
A quilting machine looks similarly to a home sewing machine. However it has additional options: the foot can be lifted higher because the fabric to work with is multilayer. Also there are additional decorative stitches. But the main difference is that this machine will last longer. If you use a home sewing machine, you need special sewing foot for quilting.
There are also auxiliary tools you might need, such as pins, ripper, quilting thimble with convenient hollow for needle, and sticky tape for quilting to keep the lines straight.
Fabric for quilting
You may use different types of fabric for making the first decorative layer. The choice of fabric depends on design of the quilt. Thick types of fabric can be used for creating interior items. The fabric that is thinner and more pleasant to wear will be suitable for making clothes. To make the second layer you can use whether piece or roll filler. The filler can be made of natural materials like cotton, wool or syntheticlike polyester, polyamide etc. You can also find glue based filler which makes the sticking of layers more convenient.
The purl layer is made of fabric, mainly cotton. Wide fabric is used to hide stitches on the purl layer.
Cotton threads are used for sewing the items together. There are plenty of things which can be used for decorating like attractive threads, lace, beads etc.