Quilting Lessons for the Beginner: Assume Nothing!

Recently, a young colleague who is an expert in other crafts but had never quilted expressed an interest in learning how to quilt.

beginners quilting tools
Basic quilting tools for beginning quilting lessons.

We–her quilting coworkers– suggested a beginner’s quilting project that included fabric and a home décor pattern. Then, with good wishes, we sent her off to sew.

It never occurred to us that she had never touched a sewing machine before.

A few weeks later, this brave soul confessed that she had fumbled her way through learning about bobbins, needles, and other basic quilting knowledge we experienced quilters take for granted. We apologized and also praised her for persevering enough to piece most of the top.

When she expressed concern about some mismatched points, we encouraged her to keep going. “It’s better to finish something imperfectly than to let it sit in a corner, unfinished, mocking you,” offered another colleague, speaking from experience.

I’m happy to report this budding quilter did stick it out, finished the top, and is now on to the quilting phase. We’ve given her quilting tips and are cheering her on to the finish line, but I can’t help thinking she might have enjoyed the process more if we hadn’t assumed she knew the very basics of sewing and quilting.

She, and other absolute beginners, would benefit from a course like Getting Started: Quilting Basics for Beginning Quilters . This course of quilting lessons, presented through Craft Online University, teaches everything you need to know to get started, including the essential tools (rotary cutter, rulers, etc.), bias vs. straight-of-grain, sewing an accurate seam, fundamental patchwork piecing techniques, how to quilt a quilt, and so on.

Quilter, author, and bundle-of-energy Mary Fons teaches the course. You can ask her questions and discuss your classwork with classmates, too.

If you’re a beginner who want to learn how to quilt, or even an experienced quilter who’d like a refresher course on the fundamentals, sign up for Getting Started: Quilting Basics for Beginning Quilters now.

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