Quilting and patchwork can take serious patience and a serious bit of equipment. It is often hard to know exactly what you need to get started. I was lost when I first started and my projects reflected that. Here is my quilting starter kit with everything you will need to get quilting.
I started quilting and patchwork as I wanted to create some of the beautiful designs I saw so often. I didn’t realise how much equipment I needed until I did more research. I found very little help and had to work it out on my own.
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Quilting Starter Kit
Self Healing Cutting Mat
I actually got my mat a couple of years ago to help me with sewing anyway and has been a blessing ever since. When you purchase a cutting mat you want to get one that is big enough to use but not too big it takes over your dining room.
Especially if you are like me, you don’t have a space that is your own for sewing. This was the first of the quilting necessities I got to get me started and it has been amazing ever since.
I use an A3 and an A2 cutting mat currently which are great as they are just the size that fits my desk area. If you have less space look at getting the A4, which is easy to store and carry around if you need it.
Rotary Cutter And Blades
A rotary cutter is a dream when you are trying to cut a straight line. The last thing you want to do is move your fabric and create a wonky line. No matter how many times you try, it just won’t be right.
Try to find a good quality rotary cutter that has a clasp or safety close on it. I have one which the handle works really well to help keep a good grip on the cutter. I also really like the safety feature on it to keep the blade tucked away while I am not using it.
You can also get spare blades to store ready for when the blade gets dull, there is nothing worse than cutting fabric with a dull blade. Don’t underestimate the power of the rotary cutter as any quilter will tell you that this is definitely essential quilting tools.
6.5 x 24 – Inch Quilting Ruler
This is the exact size I got last year and has been amazing. It is definitely worthwhile having a longer ruler so that you can cut long strips and work with a bigger area when it comes to cutting.
This works really well if you aren’t using a pre-cut fabric pack and are working from a metre of fabric. The ruler has all the measurements you will need so that you can cut straight and at the right size.
The quilting ruler is fantastic to use and easy to use. I use it for making bias tape as it gives me accurate measurements. The ruler definitely is one of my quilting necessities and is right at the top in my quilting starter kit.
Square Junior Acrylic Template
This is by the same company and is fantastic. It is called a square junior template as it is a really basic ruler to use. This is 6 1/2 inch by 6 1/2 which is a great size to use as a block, to do small tasks and fiddly sections.
This is helpful for people who are working on smaller areas, using the A4 cutting mat and cutting smaller squares. This is perfect for those who don’t want to use the larger ruler and have a smaller work space.
It is so much more worthwhile to get a good quality thread to quilt with, it will make the quilt last long and more stable while washing and been used.
You can find Gutermann, Mettler and Coats, these are the ones I have used the most while sewing. Use a medium-lightweight thread in a neutral colour as the neutral tones often blend easier into the fabrics.
No matter what the colours of the fabrics, neutral colours are the best to use. This is definitely one of the quilting necessities when creating a quilting starter kit.
Needles that are suitable for quilting are often found with a rounded point as they are designed specifically for machine quilting.
The most common size of quilting machine needle is the 90/14, the sturdy shaft is great for getting through the layers of wadding and fabric. It also has an eye big enough to handle most types of thread.
This is one of the greatest quilting necessities that can be an afterthought, so make sure you get your hands on some before jumping in. Make sure your quilting starter kit has plenty before you get started.
Always make sure your machine is in good working order before starting to quilt. You don’t need a special machine to quilt, not straight away anyway.
It is harder to do on a domestic sewing machine as there isn’t always space. If you are working on piecing the blocks together to start a good working machine is enough.
I won’t suggest a machine to buy as I have plenty of different machines that suit every person, budget and set of needs. If you are interested in getting a new machine or adding another we have you covered.
The walking foot helps feed the fabric through while working with the feed dogs below. This is really helpful as sometimes you feel like you may have to force the fabric along. This will help with that and create a more smooth run.
The walking foot will depend on the machine you are using. You can find the foot that will match your machine online or directly from the retailer itself.
Quarter Inch Foot
The quarter inch foot is pretty much what it says, this foot is designed to measure out 1/4 inch seam so that you don’t have to. You can keep sewing and only have to pay attention to that one edge.
This is another foot you can buy online or directly from the retailer if you feel more comfortable. The foot comes with a guide to help you stay at the right measurement for the seam.
Both of these are useful, I have a beautiful pair of small scissors and they are great. They don’t pinch my skin or feel too tight when using them.
these can be great for tidying up small loose threads and snipping something quickly. The smaller scissors are much easier to use especially on small and intricate areas.
Sewing clips are easy to use and have revolutionised quilting. These are great for holding binding in place and layers while sewing.
You can get a variety of brands and colours online and in sewing shops. I would say these are easier to use than pins and are quilting necessities.
A seam ripper is a great tool to have, don’t worry about making mistakes because everyone does. Even the best quilters in the world will use a seam ripper even if it is only from time to time.
You can get these anywhere and everywhere cheap, part of a kit, online, in Asda or Tesco. This are quilting necessities and sewing essential tools, this will come in handy for many more projects.
Iron And Ironing Board
Pretty sure this will be an item most people own, if you don’t, I recommend getting one. A key point to patchwork and quilting is pressing. You can use the iron you have or you can get a smaller handheld iron which can sit near you while you work.
Always press your seams after sewing to make sure that there is no bulk hiding at any point and it makes it easier to sew to the next piece. You can use a heat-protective mat for this to sit on or your ironing board.
If you have been sewing for any number of years or months you may already have a number of these tools in your sewing box. Many of the brands are similar and work well.
I started to swap out my tools as they broke or became dull and unusable. Sewing can be an expensive hobby but it doesn’t always have to cost a lot.
That is everything on my quilting starter kit, if you have any other quilting necessities you would like to share let me know in the comments below. I hope you have found this helpful and get quilting really soon!