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Shepherds Hill Homestead » Heritage Skills, Homemaking, Plain Lifestyle, Quilting, Sewing » Make A Quilt

Make A Quilt


Log Cabin Wall Hanging Quilt
Basics of Quilting
One of my FAVORITE ways to spend an afternoon is to quilt! It is such a soothing, satisfying work.  Quilting has been around for centuries and was born from practical need. Truly making a quilting is just constructing a fabric sandwich.  You need a top (this is the part that is usually pieced in pretty designs), a middle of batting, and a bottom (a solid piece of fabric).  Once you have the three pieces in place and on a frame to hold them together, then you actually quilt.
To quilt you sew through all three pieces in small, even stitches.  You can make designs or follow the pattern on the top or simply go in straight lines until the entire quilt is finished.  Lastly, you sew the edges together either by rolling to hem or using a binding.



Tools and Materials



Fabric for Quilt Top – Making a Pieced/Patterned Quilt Top will require multiple fabrics in different patterns and colors.  You can also make a top from a single piece of fabric and this will really showcase your quilting pattern.


 Fabric for Backing – You can purchase a flat sheet of the bed size you want.


 Batting – Purchase the batting size that you need: Twin, Full, Queen, King


    Loft means the thickness.  Cotton/Polyester blend or Wool/Polyester blend is the best choice.
    80 % cotton or wool and 20% polyester


 Quilting Needles


Quilting Thread


Quilting Thimble


Quilting Frame – Can be as complicated as a multi-size frame on a stand or a simple hoop frame that is hand held








The above quilt is one Dessa from Tennessee made – see comments below.



Written by

"It is of the LORD's mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness. The LORD is my portion, saith my soul; therefore will I hope in him." Lamentations 3:22-24

Filed under: Heritage Skills, Homemaking, Plain Lifestyle, Quilting, Sewing

30 Responses to "Make A Quilt"

  1. Dessa says:

    I am doing my first hand sewn quilt for my daughter for a wedding present. Im excited to see how this turns out as there are not any quilters in my town and not even a quilt shop. So I guess you could say I will be a self taught quilter with many mistakes ahead of me.

    1. Angelia Angie says:

      Dessa – holler if you get stuck. I took a short class about 30 years ago and the rest I have had to learn in doing. God has always been faithful to send me a book or teacher when I couldn’t figure out the next step. It is a blessing to know you are jumping in!!

  2. Dessa says:

    I am having trouble finding a quilt frame. I have seen the ones that are made out of PVC pipes but I’m not sure how steady they would be. I have been looking for a wooden and the older the better but since I don’t live in an area where there are many, if any, quilters this is becoming my mission to find. We have many Amish families about 20 miles but we have not made friends with any of them yet but as we continue to visit their places maybe we can make some friends and I can find a quilter up there. I have read about how they quilt and that is how I’m learning hand quilting. To me it just seems easier and less material is wasted.

    1. Angelia Angelia says:

      Dessa, I have three different types of quilting frames – the pvc, a Grace frame (by Grace company) and a large wooden frame
      which is attached to the ceiling and lowered down for use. You can also use a round hoop frame and just quilt in sections.
      Some folks do one block at a time and use a large embroidery hoop. There are lots of options.

  3. Dessa says:

    Do you like the Grace frame? I have seen many of them on craigslist but I don’t know anyone that has one. I have plenty of embroidery hoops as I love to that also but I didn’t know how well that would be with a large quilt. I am making a lap quilt for my daughter that will be 60×60. She will be getting married in two years so I have plenty of time to do a full or queen size quilt for the wedding present.

    1. Angelia Angelia says:

      I do like it Dessa – it folds flat and is very easy to move the quilt on. I highly recommend it!

  4. Dessa says:

    Does the grace frame tilt?

    1. Angelia Angelia says:

      Yes, mine tilts in a couple of different ways.

  5. Dessa says:

    Cool. I will look for a Grace frame next time I go to the big city. Ha Ha. I do have a question about the backing of a quilt. How do you piece together the backing? I heard of some using sheets for a back but I have also heard that isn’t such a great idea. Do I just piece the fabric together as I would the top of the quilt?

    1. Angelia Angelia says:

      Dessa – I have used sheets as backing for quilts before and they work fine. Just don’t get the cheapest ones – get quality. It needs to be the same weight fabric as the pieced top.
      You don’t piece the backing – it is just solid fabric. The quilting itself gives the pattern to the backing.

  6. Dessa says:

    The reason I asked about the backing is that there is fabric that is as big as a full or larger quilt size. How do I know fabric weight to match the top to a sheet backing? I told I’m really new at this so this may sound like a silly question. My mom sewed our clothes when we were growing up but never taught as how. She taught us embroidery, knitting or crochet.

    1. Angelia Angelia says:

      Dessa – if the fabric used for the piecing is all broadcloth/cotton then you can use a sheet because sheets are generally the same. If you are using heavier fabric for the piecing then the cotton will not hold it as well and will tend to pull under the weight of the top. You can buy fabric – 120″ – for the backing or buy narrower pieces and sew them together but then you would have a seam down the back of the quilt. That isn’t terrible but it is not quite as pretty as a solid piece. If you sew each block and then quilt each block you can then sew all the blocks together and there would be seams all in the back of the quilt but it would be part of the pattern and would be just fine.

  7. Dessa says:

    The lap quilt I getting ready to start the top will be 100% cotton fabric. What thread count for a sheet do you buy for your quilts? I was going to go to bed, bath and beyond to get a good quality flat sheet. And here I thought that fabric only came in 43″. Lol silly me.

    1. Angelia Angelia says:

      Not sure on that Dessa but I do know this. If you get a high thread count sheet it is going to be much tougher to quilt. I recommend just an average quality sheet if you are using broadcloth for the top. Just a Wal-Mart type brand would work great! Be sure to wash it first before sewing it as with all your fabrics.

  8. Dessa says:

    I have gotten my quilt top done today. wooo hooo for me but now I have a question about batting and basting. What would you recommend for a batting and can a bast a quilt without a frame? If so then how? What color thread should I quilt with? A color that matches the quilt colors or white or black? Oh yea I seen at Hancock Fabrics quilting needles that look like a fishing hook. Do you have a clue what they are used for?


    1. Angelia Angelia says:

      Dessa, Good for you!!! I use straight quilting needles called “betweens” and natural or white hand quilting thread. You could use a contrasting color but I think mine look better with the natural because I generally use muslin or white cotton for my blocks. You can use a large embroidery type hoop for holding the quilt in position and just do sections at a time in your actual quilting. I use Poly-Cotton Blend Batting – low loft for hand quilting and high loft for tie quilting. Wool and cotton are other options but a bit harder for hand quilting and don’t hold together as well if you are going to use the quilt on a bed. Never saw a curved quilting needle so I can’t help you there. Curved needles are usually for projects where you can’t really get a straight needle in and out easily. Hope that helps!

      1. Dessa says:

        Yes, this helps out a lot and I’m off to the store to get the things I need to finish this quilt. I will send you pictures when I get done with it.

        1. Angelia Angelia says:

          Can’t wait to see it, Dessa!

  9. Dessa says:

    Got a batting question. I got my batting (twin size since it was the only size that came close to the quilt size I’m doing). I got the low loft but since it came in a roll I want to know will the crease marks in the batting make a difference in the quilt? If so then how do I get them out?

    1. Angelia Angelia says:

      No, they won’t make any difference. As you tie or stitch the quilt that should take care of it.

  10. Dessa says:

    Help!!! I don’t know how to do a knot at the end of stitching. I’ve tried different ways from YouTube but I just can’t make them work. Starting knot is no problem but ending is a pain.

    1. Angelia Angelia says:

      Dessa – I pull the thread through one more time and then stitch over the last stitch a couple of times. Then I pull the thread through the middle and back out the same side as I went in – pull tight and snip it so the thread goes back into the layers instead of being outside. Hope that makes sense.

  11. Dessa says:

    oh my gosh yes, that helps a lot thanks.

  12. Dessa says:

    Need more advice. I’m doing an outline stitch for this quilt and I have been advised to just stitch some of the squares and not all of them. I worry about the batting shifting during use or washing if I don’t quilt every square. What do you think?


    1. Angelia Angelia says:

      Dessa, not to disagree with your source but I would personally do all the outlining if the pattern is fairly simple. If it is extremely intricate then you can determine how much is necessary to keep the design appearance. It has been my experience to not leave any space more than 4 inches without some stitching in it if you are going to use the quilt. If it is a wall-hanging then you have the freedom to leave space since there will not be so much movement and need to launder it.
      Hope that helps.

  13. Dessa says:

    I took your advice and it looks so much better with all the squares outlined. Husband says it looks wonderful for a first time quilter. I’m still working on getting my stiches more uniform.

  14. Dessa says:

    I finished my lap quilt. I would love to send you a picture of it but I can’t add pictures to this post.

    1. Angelia Angelia says:

      Oh I can’t wait to see it Dessa!! Send it to me on email and I will post it.

  15. Dessa says:

    Thank you so much for all the encouragement and advice. It really helped me complete this quilt.

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