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How To Choose A Quilting Design

When you decide to make a quilt, one of the main things to consider is the quilt design and fabric. Choose these two carefully for a beautiful quilt at the end of the quilting process.

Many times how quilters and their clients come up with quilting designs are based on individual needs. So, there’s no right or wrong design if this is the basis of your choice.

However, with hundreds of quilt designs to choose from, what determines how one chooses their quilt designs?

How Do You Choose A Quilt Design?

There are many ways that one can come up with a quilting design. Most times, it depends on the experience of the quilter, and other times, you are only limited by your imagination.

You can come up with custom quilting designs. Or, you can rely on your quilting tools, or your experience to choose quilting designs for your different projects.

Steps To Choose A Quilting Design

Method 1. Custom Quilting Design

Step 1. You have already finished making your quilt top and you have your batting and pieced backing ready. However, you don’t know what to do about the quilting design that you want to use.

You can set your quilt aside and wait for inspiration to come to you. A custom quilt design is one that you come up with on your own. However, inspiration will come to you actively rather than passively waiting.

Step 2. Have a good look at your quilt and decide where you think its focal point lies. What is unique about the quilt? Is it something that can be embellished with quilting or is it best left unquilted?

How best can I make it stand out? Ask yourself as many questions as you can and only in this way will a custom quilting design inspiration come to you.

Step 3. Once you have answered these questions and you have an idea of what you want to do, you need to put pen to paper before you forget. Take an image of your quilting fabric.

Have photos of the different areas of the quilt at hand. Also, make sure to focus deeply on the sections of the fabric that you want to add to your custom design. Print out the images of your quilt and place them on your working table.

Step 4. Transfer your inspiration onto the images of the quilt that you have with you. Sketch your quilt design ideas on the images to see if what you have in mind will translate to reality on the fabric.

It is better to make design mistakes on paper rather than on your quilt. You can always change them and come up with new designs.

Step 5. Now, you need to transfer the images on your sketches to your fabrics. You will need the right tools to make this happen.

In this stage, it will all depend on your quilting skill level. You may need to mark out several shapes depending on the custom quilt design that you came up with.

Do you have all the quilting tools that you need for your designs to get onto your quilt and come to life?

Step 6. When you have a custom design, you don’t have to stitch it all over the quilt fabric. You can choose to stitch it on the areas of the fabric that are less busy or accentuate the patterns that are already on the fabric.

This technique of quilting is known as section quilting and you can use it freely when you come up with your designs.

Method 2. Stippling

Step 1. Stippling is a popular quilting design that you can choose. It is also known as meandering as it is based on making lines that don’t cross each other on your quilt.

The first thing you need to know for this quilting design is the rule of stippling which states that the lines should never cross.

Step 2. Bring the quilt fabric that you want to design with the meandering design to your home sewing machine. You can also do this with a long-arm machine.

Stitch a curved line along one edge of your fabric. This curved line looks like an image of hills and valleys.

Step 3. To now make the meandering or stippling design, introduce bends into the stitching design.

In addition to just stitching up and down to form the hills and valleys, make your next stitch contour around the fabric. As you do this make sure that your lines don’t cross each other.

Making the stippling quilt design needs you to be flexible as you move your fabric around on your sewing machine with your arms.

Step 4. The easiest way to go about making the stippling design on your quilt is if you mark the shapes of the meandering lines on it. You can use water-soluble pens to make the marks.

Sew on the marks so that you have an accurate design on your quilt. Once you are through sewing you can wipe off the pen marks from your quilt fabric.

Even if the lines are meandering, you can use this technique to write a name or include unique shapes onto the quilt. Thus developing a unique quilting design for your quilt.

Step 5. You can also use this design if you have a multi-colored quilt fabric. To do this successfully, you would have to ignore all the lines, seams, and stitches on the quilting fabric.

This kind of design stitching on a quilt is known as all-over quilting. With this technique, you can stitch your stippling design on any kind of quilting fabric that you are working on.

Factors To Consider When Choosing A Quilting Design

The major factor to consider when it comes to choosing a quilting design is that you don’t have a wrong choice. You can decide to come up with your design or go with stippling as your quilt design.

Whichever design you choose is right. All you have to do is to transfer it onto the quilt that you are designing.

When you have to choose a design and leave your quilt for a while before you proceed, you may get confused about how to choose the design. This then leaves you with an unfinished quilt. Pick a design quickly and proceed.

Another factor that you need to consider is your skill level. Do you have the required skills and experience to deliver the kind of design that you choose to come up with? Only choose a design that you can complete with ease.

You also need to understand your quilt. How is the quilts’ fabric? Does it have lots of colors or lots of negative space? Consider how your quilt looks and feels as you come up with a quilting design to stitch on it.

Finally, consider the type of instrument that you will be using to make the designs on your quilt. Depending on your skill level, you can use your home sewing machine or a longarm machine to add your design to the quilt.

Each machine has its advantages. However, choose the one that you are most comfortable using.

Types Of Quilts

Even as you choose a quilting design for your quilts, you need to understand the types of quilts available to choose the right design. Pieced quilts are quilts made out of smaller blocks of fabric that are sewn together to make a large quilt.

Applique quilt is a quilt that can easily take up any of the quilting designs that you choose to quilt it with. It is made up of blocks of different shapes to make the quilt.

Paper pieced quilts are another type of quilts you can make. They are made by printing out designs on paper, then sewing the papers together on a block of fabric.


Hello, I am Jessica Flores, and you are welcome to my website. I am a professional fashion designer and a seamstress. I always carried a passion for craftwork. My love for craft grew along with time. I have spent years researching and practicing in this field to gather colossal experience.

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