TO CLIP THOSE LOOSE THREADS OR NOT?

Not to dishonor Shakespeare’s “to be or not to be”, but as quilters our question is more likely to be “to clip those loose threads or not?” We all know they can make a mess if just allowed to hang on the back of the quilt top.

This is my take on loose threads, and you don’t have to agree, but I am rarely bothered enough by those threads to take time to clip them off.

You either gasp in horror at this point or break out laughing.

TO CLIP THOSE LOOSE THREADS OR NOT?

I am aware they can make a huge mess, and if I am not careful as I sew, a good portion of them end up in the seam and show up on the front of the quilt.  Sheesh….now they really do need clipped, right?

FirsT:

I rarely use white or any other light color for a quilt background – because I know this about myself. The first quilt I ever made with a white background I learned the hard way about not clipping those threads because I had it completely basted and in the frame for hand quilting and gasp…. I could see the darker threads.  Many hours later, I had un-basted the quilt sandwich and clipped all those threads.  Then to put it all back together……Ugh….

Second:

If it is a scrap quilt, I use that as a chance to use up all those colored, partial spools and bobbins of leftover thread that probably don’t match much of the fabric in the current quilt top. See another post: https://indianaquilter40.com/thread-fabric-should-they-match/

By now you are either so horrified you stop reading, or you are rolling on the floor laughing because you do the same thing.

Bonnie Hunter quote: Decide for yourself what matters to you and what doesn't.
Source: Quiltville

Third:

I decided long ago that I was more concerned about accurate cutting and piecing than about always matching the thread to the fabric, or clipping all those nasty loose hanging threads that appear on the back of my quilt top.

I am careful to take the time to pull them back out of the way when sewing the seams and since I usually use darker background fabrics it is rarely noticed if I choose to ignore the clipping step.

Quilters, whether you are a beginner or very advanced in your quilt making exactly what part of the quilting process is priority is up to you.  No one is going to die if we do a shortcut on our quilts.  Yes, they should be well made, but some things are not worth the time.

I refuse to stress about loose hanging threads on the back of a top that once it is quilted will never show up anyway.  So now you know my awful secret…

Summary:

To clip those loose threads or not? I encourage you to make your quilts, your sewing process, and your priorities while quilting your very own. Only you can decide what causes you stress while sewing or quilting, and if ignoring some small irritant is right for you.

Photo of cupboard full of quilts with the words - live. laugh. love...quilt!
Source: Quiltville

Have a wonderful day of quilting.

Another thought about clipping threads:

https://forum.missouriquiltco.com/forum/we-don-t-know-much-but-we-know-quilters/quilting-questions/57736-clipping-threads-on-back-of-a-quilt-top

PLEASE NOTE: 
ALL PHOTOS AND WRITTEN CONTENT ARE MY OWN UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED.

REMEMBERING BEATRIX POTTER QUILT

As a child I was fascinated by the beautiful illustrations and animal stories of Beatrix Potter. When I found this cute border fabric of her storybook characters, it just had to come home with me. This colorful fabric is in my stash whenever I needed it for a project. It would make a cute and cuddly baby quilt. When a family friend’s daughter was pregnant, I made this “Remembering Beatrix Potter Quilt” for the expected baby.

REMEMBERING BEATRIX POTTER QUILT

This was a fun quilt to make with the Beatrix Potter border print and strips of coordinating fabrics that I pulled from my stash to make a 45″ x 50″ quilt in 2009.

My notes don’t say what size the strips were, but I can say that I just played with various size strips of scrap fabric until I figured out the right size of borders and strips.  All machine pieced.

Batting was polyester, and the back was a plain pink cotton.

Machine quilting is an all over loop pattern done by RLM.

Using strips to piece a quilt top is easy and makes for a great looking quilt. The strips can be cut to the width and length you need for a project. I love being able to adjust a quilt design for my own personal needs without redrawing patterns or doing very much math.

More ideas for fabric strips

https://indianaquilter40.com/wedding-quilt-simple-personal/

https://indianaquilter40.com/prayerful-leader-a-george-washington-quilt/

PLEASE NOTE: 
ALL PHOTOS AND WRITTEN CONTENT ARE MY OWN UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED.

BOOKS ABOUT AMISH QUILTS (or a world of stunning colors)

Book titled "Quilts Among the Plain People"

I pick up good quality Books About Amish Quilts (or a world of stunning beauty) when I have the chance. Here are some from my personal collection.

BOOKS ABOUT AMISH QUILTS (or a world of stunning colors)

Even if there are no patterns – there are wonderful photos and ideas for the next quilt.

Book titled "Amish Wall Quilts"

I love the contrast of colors on traditional Amish quilts – especially those from Lancaster County, PA.

Book titled "Amish Quilting Patterns"

The immense amount of hand quilting that goes into them is simply amazing. I think these quilts were the start of my inspiration for doing, and loving the look and feel of hand quilting.

Book titled "Amish Patchwork - Full Size Patterns for 46 Authentic Designs"

In my head I start thinking about what fabrics in my own stash. Would any lend themselves to making a quilt in the bright and bold patterns of the Amish community?

BOOKS ABOUT AMISH QUILTS (or a world of stunning colors)

When I can get to Amish communities, I go to local stores. The quilts are always inspiring.

Book titled "The World of Amish Quilts"

The Amish store two hours south of me has wonderful fabrics, both solid and prints. The prices are good and the selection is wonderful.

Book Titled "Amish Crib Quilts from the Midwest"

If you get a chance to see Amish quilts (especially antique ones) and/or visit an Amish dry goods shop do so. Slow down and relax. Enjoy the chance to do something different and see another kind of quilt.

If you are interested in Amish quilts please take time to find and look at any of the BOOKS ABOUT AMISH QUILTS (or a world of stunning colors) listed here.

https://indianaquilter40.com/amish-4-patch-doll-quilt/

https://indianaquilter40.blogspot.com/2011/12/amish-center-diamond.html

PLEASE NOTE: 
ALL PHOTOS AND WRITTEN CONTENT ARE MY OWN UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED.

CHRISTMAS CARDINALS WALL HANGING

CHRISTMAS CARDINALS WALL HANGING

I found this “cheater” panel and the matching cardinal fabric at Paducah one year, and just had to make something for Christmas from it. This cute Christmas Cardinals wall hanging was just fun to make. It could have been much quicker if I had not gotten distracted with other quilting projects.

I started out with the center panel, added some leftover pieced squares, then a border in red. The outside border is the coordinating cardinal fabric. The machine quilting is a small stipple design by RLM. I completed it with dark green binding, and a tag on the back.

Finished size is 35″ x 35″.

Backing for Christmas Cardinals.
Backing fabric

Fabric panels are also called “cheater fabric”. My thought on quilting is that is should be fun and that whatever technique I (or you) choose to do is fine.

Here are some other “cheater fabric” quilts:

https://indianaquilter40.blogspot.com/2019/06/ships-another-panel-quilt.html

https://indianaquilter40.blogspot.com/2019/06/heart-of-america-panel-quilt.html

https://indianaquilter40.com/nautical-scene-wall-hanging-fabric-panel-quilt/

I don’t waste time on the “quilt police” that occasionally show up in my life – you know the ones – “I only do hand quilting” or “I would never use that fabric in that pattern” or “I hand piece all my quilts” or “I only do traditional patterns” or “I use cotton batting” or………. Folks like that will not change their minds if I (or you) try to explain why doing a particular thing in quilting is just fine, so do not stress yourself.  The process of quilting should be fun, satisfying, and enrich your soul.

Using fabric panels

The only real rule in quilting is to do good workmanship.  Everything else is personal – the pattern, the fabrics, the quilting design, hand or machine quilted (or tied), and hand vs. machine piecing. Do the techniques you enjoy.

Feel free to mix techniques in your quilts. Quilting and quilts should bring you joy. Your quilts can be as individual as you are. Enjoy the process.

I use a mix.  While I love the traditional look of quilts, I personally don’t want a home full of traditional looking quilts.  I like to use the colors and designs of fabric that catch my eyes.

Clip art - Make Today Amazing

PLEASE NOTE:  ALL PHOTOS AND WRITTEN CONTENT ARE MY OWN UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED.

SCRAP RECTANGLE PARTY QUILT

SCRAP RECTANGLE PARTY QUILT

Scraps, scraps and more scraps. Do your scraps seem to multiply without much help from you? Maybe while you are sleeping? It sure seems that way in my sewing area. Welcome to the super simple Scrap Rectangle Party Quilt !!

Here’s the inspiration from Pintrest for my own quilt: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/782570872732967356/

Inspiration from Pintrest for Scrap Rectangle Party quilt
Inspiration for my quilt – from Pintrest

I liked the look of the gray on the inspiration quilt as the alternate blocks between the scraps. My stash had several yards of a gray with white polka dots so that became the alternate blocks and the stable color all through the quilt.

The rectangles:

I decided to work with a larger size rectangle. After cutting and experimenting with several various sizes of rectangles, I decided on 4″ wide by 7″ long. It was an easy to piece top that was also quick.

Container of rectangles for this quilt.

The scraps were pulled out of the scrap bins and cut to size. I did not use anything that blended in with the gray, but otherwise, the scraps were fair game.

I sewed the blocks together long wise into pairs, those pairs into groups of 4 rectangles , and those into 8. Using 24 blocks across made for easy math with 3 sections of 8 rectangles each.

Another view of the Scrap Rectangle Party quilt.

The rows were 24 blocks across with a total of 16 rows. Now to frame it with some sort of border.

Borders:

My daughter came over and between us we came up with the narrow black border (cut 2″ wide). We found the tough part was the outside border, nothing seemed to really work – more gray made the quilt too dark. There was not enough of any florals that looked right. I didn’t have enough of the solid purple that looked really neat.

Am I the only one frustrated with finding the perfect border fabric for scrap quilts? Somehow I doubt it. Anyway, daughter and I continued to dig through the stash and came up with a fun novelty fabric that was perfect. Cut a 4″ border from it for the outside border.

Border fabric for this quilt.

This really was a quick quilt to make. I started ironing and cutting on July 4 and put the final stitch in the top on Aug. 3.

Remember that you can adjust the size of the rectangles bigger or smaller depending on your own fabrics and desire. This quilt will be easy to piece no matter the size of the rectangles or completed size you want. Depending on the fabric choices, it could look totally primitive to very modern.

I am actually going to try another one of these in a planned color scheme.

Finished top size is 92″ x 110″.

Border area of this quilt.

Have a fun time making your own Scrap Rectangle Party quilt. Please send me photos – I love to see what other quilters do with ideas from this blog.

SCRAP RECTANGLE PARTY QUILT

More scrap quilt ideas:

https://indianaquilter40.com/lemon-drops-and-blueberries-quilt/

https://indianaquilter40.com/the-great-migration-quilt/

Have a wonderful day, and happy stitching.

Girl with sewing machine and quilt top.
Source: Google clip art

PLEASE NOTE:  ALL PHOTOS AND WRITTEN CONTENT ARE MY OWN UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED.