Thursday, October 27, 2011

You CAN! - Acceptability in the Quilting/Blogging World

Over the last few months, I've been getting emails and comments from people who are just getting into quilting and/or blogging, who want to know whether something is acceptable.

(this post will be interspersed with fall pictures from my campus to ease your eyes from the text :) And because I love fall. Reason enough, right?)

As someone who is also still fairly new to all this (1 1/2 years of sewing, 1 year of quilt blogging), and as someone who is completely self-taught, I just want to set the record straight.

Don't feel like the quilt police are on your tail. There is no "right" way to do something - which is one of the reasons I feel so comfortable with the modern quilting trend. There ARE no rules. This goes for people who want to make traditional quilts as well, though - do what YOU want to do. Don't let anyone make you think that your creativity should be compromised for something "right." Take risks. Enjoy your craft!

-----I want to start a list here - a positive atmosphere for people to share encouragement and crafty ideas - different ways of doing things.-----

The first thing I encourage quilters new and old to try is cutting your backing 3 inches bigger (just in case you are off by a little) and fold it over to make the binding. You don't HAVE to make a separate binding! It saves you loads of time, and then you just machine sew the binding to the top of the quilt. If you'd like to see a quilt I made with this technique, see this post. The finish doesn't look any different!

The second thing is that it is okay to buy fabric and supplies from places like Walmart, Hobby Lobby, etc. I have, especially because I'm on a budget. Depending on the fabric, it might not be the best quality, so for things like solids I would go for good quality Kona or Bella if you can afford it. However, you don't need to have the latest fabric line to be accepted. :)

Finally, with blogging - you don't need to have thousands of followers to be a good blogger. You also don't have to have sponsors. You don't have to do product reviews (I just tried this for the first time to see what it was like). You don't have to do giveaways. Blog for you and enjoy every second. For the people who do have lots of followers and/or sponsors, rock on. I enjoy reading your blogs, too. :)

I haven't been asked about this last one but it's something I just wanted to say.

Anyone else have suggestions? Again, please keep this a positive atmosphere and please share this on your blog or with other quilters if you can. I would love to get your feedback. Thanks in advance!

If it helps, start by saying, "You can...."

And thanks for being a great online community.


  1. Jess I have been using the extra backing fabric for binding for years. When I started sewing charity quilts, I found it was easier and much quicker to machine quilt the binding down. It's a great way to bind your quilts.

  2. You can sure take beautiful photos! LOL

    I agree with everything you said. DD and I attended the inaugural meeting of the Sydney chapter of the Modern Quilt Guild last weekend. In trying to define modern quilts, we realised that it's more an attitude than a style! One doesn't even have to use white to be modern!! ;-)

    Thanks for a great, interesting, thought-provoking post.

  3. I have a suggestion-------- to keep bringing on the autumn pics:P

    Really great advice Jess:)

  4. I started quilting in the 1970s when there were no instructions. I figured out to fold the back over as the binding and just kept doing it. I've never actually put on a 'traditional' binding. The police sniff and hold their noses like they're smelling something bad every once in a while, but not so much any more. I'm so glad we're coming past all that. Viva la QuiltingTheWayWeWant!!

  5. Awesome post! I've been playing at quilting for almost 20 years and I NEVER join swaps because early on it was made clear to me if I didn't use 'quilt shop fabric' NOT to join. Thank you for letting everyone who reads your blog that you DON'T HAVE TO HAVE the latest of everything on the market. :) And the other tips are great too. :D

  6. There's no supposed to :)

  7. Hi Jess, Great Blog, Love knowing the younger generation is Quilting. I was taught yrs ago, reason for separate binding- is the quilts edges usually have more wear & tear over time. If it's separate, it can be replaced much easier than trying to fix the folded over back. Having said that - I've only done that once, the rest of my quilts have folded over backs, they all look great & have held up really well. I make Quilts for Family & Friends out of Love -not for the Quilt Police. Quilting is supposed to be Fun(there are no rules), so keep enjoying yourself. Susan

  8. Very nice post. It is nice to have someone blogging that is just winging it on her own like me. I am not a big designer. I am just a stay at home mom that needed something to do so her I am. I am doing what I love and enjoying every minute of it. So are you!! Thank you!


Let's start a conversation! I love comments and I'd be happy to reply to all who have an email address accessible. Thanks for commenting!


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