The Ultimate Beginner Quilt - Quilting on Your Home Sewing Machine - The Jolly Jabber Quilting Blog

The Ultimate Beginner Quilt – Quilting on Your Home Sewing Machine

In today’s tutorial, we welcome Gina Tell back to the Fat Quarter Shop to show you the basics of quilting on your home machine. One of the last and most important steps in making a quilt is the quilting. Quilting holds the quilt top, batting and backing together firmly and locks down seams. The stitched patterns added during this step will complement your piecing and elevate the overall design of your quilt.

Once your quilt is basted, it’s ready for quilting on your home sewing machine! In the following tutorials, Gina Tell of Thread Graffiti will demonstrate two techniques: straight line quilting and free-motion quilting. If you prefer not to do this yourself, read on to learn about using a longarm quilter instead.

Check out the tutorials below to get started with quilting!

Straight Line Quilting

If reading this in email, click this link to watch the video.

Free Motion Quilting

If reading this in email, click this link to watch the video.

Home Quilting vs Longarm Quilting

You can quilt your quilt by hand, but many quilters nowadays prefer to do it by machine. There are some reasons why you might want to quilt on your home sewing machine. It’s yet another part of the creative process of making a quilt and will give you a piece that is 100% made by you. It only requires an investment of time and the addition of a few basic tools and notions. One thing to note is that it takes a lot of time and space.

An alternative to quilting at home is sending your piece to a longarmer. A longarm quilter is a person who runs a longarm sewing machine. This large machine is made of two parts: a frame that can hold the entire width of a quilt and a sewing machine head that can move freely over the surface of the quilt. In effect, it gives the longarmer the ability to easily stitch over the surface of an entire quilt, row by row. You might check with your local quilt guild or quilt shop for some recommendations. You can find a longarmer near you or online who can take on this part of the process.

If you want to learn more, many quilt shops offer classes and rental time for longarm quilting machines. If you wish to try longarm quilting for yourself, this is an art you can continue to learn after you have the quilting basics down.

Longarm machine loaded with a Charm Pack Tree Skirt. Photo courtesy of Gina Tell.

We have some awesome quilty friends quilting with us!
Check out their blogs and follow them on social media for inspiration and tips.

Pat SloanMister DomesticBrittany Clark
Gina of Thread GraffitiTracie of Riceford StreamsThe Real Housewives of Cross Stitch
Priscilla & Chelsea
Karin of Blue Pip DesignsLinden of vinelinesRebecca of OneWeeBird
Ange of A Little Patchwork




Keep up with The Ultimate Beginner Quilt Sew Along!

Be sure to share your progress on The Ultimate Beginner Quilt with us on Facebook, and Instagram with #ultimatebeginnerquilt and #myfirstquilt. If you have any questions, leave a comment on our blog or video and we’ll help you out!

Subscribe to our Beginner Quilt Newsletter for occasional updates and special offers created for the beginner quilter, and subscribe to our YouTube channel so you don’t miss a video.

The Ultimate Beginner Quilt is a free quilt pattern series with video tutorials designed just for beginners. Even if you have zero sewing experience, this is the free quilt class for you! If you’re joining us for the first time, jump back to the beginning of the series to see what it’s all about.



Stay tuned for next week’s blog and video! On Thursday, October 24 for our final video on adding binding to your quilt. 

Happy Quilting!

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  1. I am trying to download the Thread Tension Guide and Straight Line and Free Motion Quilting Patterns but the link seems to be down. Is there another way I can download the documents?

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