Long Arm Quilting · Quilt · quilthaventhreads · quilting

The Quilt Top is Finished, Now What?

So the quilt top is done, now what?  I have my bag of tricks, multiple designs, some I have learned  by some great quilt instructors, other designs I have created by doodling.   I have picked up some quilting designs looking at architecture, tiles or antique plates or trays.  I’ve seen new designs in someone else’s quilt at a show or in a magazine, the inspiration is endless.  Still, when I finish a quilt top, I struggle to picture how to fill each space.

Sometimes I will draw the design on a sheet of glass which I place over the design.  I use erasable markers and draw what I think will work.  Once I slipped off the glass and got the marker on the fabric!  Fortunately, I was able to replace that fabric square as it had not yet been quilted.  I now put tape on the edges of the glass so the markers have a clear stopping point.  I have read some people use seal and press and draw their designs in the same way.   IMG_5781


I have tried to draw the blocks on graph paper which I photo copy, and draw the designs on the photo copies.  It’s time consuming and I don’t have the entire quilt only a block.  I have also tried drawing in various computer programs, but haven’t found one that works for me.  Recently, I refined this method thanks to a tip from Master Quilter Sharon Schamber.  She said to take a photo of your quilt and put in “Paint” which is a free program on your computer.  Then copy the photo using a low resolution in black and white.  Next, make multiple copies.  You can draw until you decide what works for you.  That is all I need for the way I quilt.  I usually use my blocks as guides or draw lines.  I don’t draw out each feather or whatever the actual design is.IMG_5779 (1)

What method do you use to decide your designs?


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