For my quilting students and friends:
Practice for quilting is so important to obtain a level of fun and satisfaction, so I decided there is a need on my Blog for a page to place some downloads and links for my students and others who may be interested.
My Practice Piece Marking Guides
These little practice quiltlets make wonderful presents for your pets, but be sure to serge or bind the edge before letting them have it so they won’t try to eat the batting. If you don’t have pets, some veterinarians like having them.
For use with 21″ x 21″ or 27″ x 21″ practice sandwiches: suggest you make two at once. Cut folded 42″ solid fabric 21 inches long, making sure the edges are even. Cut the folded piece in half at the fold. Do the same for 42″ wide backing fabric. I normally use bleached muslin, but you can use anything in your stash, which is a good way to use up those pieces you wonder why you ever bought or have leftover and don’t think you will use. Cut two pieces of batting 21 x 21 inches or 27 x 21 inches. Using the marking guides and a light box or if your fabric is light enough just place behind the fabric. Use a regular school ruler, mark using your favorite marking tool. I often use either a chalk pencil or a Crayola children’s washable marker with fine points. Sandwich each square using a light coating of temporary spray adhesive only on the batting. Pin the corners with safety pins.
Now you have two practice pieces marked for play…using any quilting method (Feed dogs up, free motion with feed dogs down, and free motion with quilting rulers and a quilting foot).
Celtic Border This design, which we did not discuss in class, would make a good table runner or border for a Celtic quilt. I used Lisa Calle rulers to create this design for my quilt Pendragon. You may be able to use your Bernina ruler set circles if you have those. I found it excellent practice for ruler work. It prints into three pages for taping together and tracing.
Meanwhile, here’s a guidesheet for free motion quilting for a 20 x 20 inch quilt sandwich. Right click and copy this and paste on a page of your own in Word or a digital design software to print. It’s just a guidesheet to use with 1 inch square grid
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Links of Interest
For ruler work with Bernina rulers:
- Ruler work using Bernina rulers
- Bernina video using circles
- Bernina video for domestic ruler work
- Bernina video for 72 foot for domestic ruler work
My favorite rulers beyond Bernina
I really love Lisa Calle’s rulers for sit down ruler work. They are sized just right, marked well, and simply provide some wonderful additions to my ruler collection. She also has videos using some of them. Over the past several years I have collected many of her rulers.
I have others I like too.
There are many videos out there to help you with your quilting. Indeed, I am making some of my own and will add the links here when I get them done.
My recommended online classes to help you further:
Other Links of Interest
Gina Perkes Master rulerwork class on the quilt show. I recommend watching some of these even if you don’t buy her rulers. She has excellent discusions about how to handle rulers that apply to all ruler work. I have the set for this class though and they are terrific. I bought mine one at a time.
Making baby and child quilts to learn and practice is a great idea. If they come out more or less ok (not necessarily perfect, but looking kind of nice) and you don’t have anything to do with them, please give them to an organization that uses these. One of my dear friends Annabelle is very involved with Project Linus, which is a great place to drop off your completed quilts. If you are in northern Virginia, she is the coordinator for the Fairfax chapter.
Items recommended in classes at G Street Fabrics
- Tight Grips for quilting rulers
- Take Aim Stencils for marking grids
- Iron off Pounce Marker with refill for use with stencils
- Drawing Wheels for use with quilting rulers to draw designs
- Golden Threads Paper for both tracing and stitching through from the top
- Removable adhesive dots for use with Golden Threads Paper when quilting
- Painter’s Tape
- Freezer Paper for multiple tasks in the studio
- If the thread you want is not available at the shop – Superior Threads and Aurifil Wool Threads
- Bernina feet for quilting (note the echo foot on this page we talked about) to buy at the shop
- Where to order battings if not available at the shop (remember 80/20 or 70/30 for most uses, Hobbs Thermore for clothing, Wool used with additional layer or Polydown for loft and trapunto).