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Beautiful Fabrics & Kits

The Quilters Closet Patchwork Fabrics Online

Frequently Asked Questions

Our boutique shop is now open on Tuesday, Thursday & Saturday from 10am to 1pm. We will also be open on the 4th Sunday of the month from 10am to 1pm.  This will coincide with the Garfield Coffee and Cars morning, so come and make a day of it, visit our local boutique shops and indulge in our favourite  eateries for lunch, coffee or that well earned glass of wine, after a wonderful day shopping.

If you can't make these times, or need to shop after work hours, I am more than willing to accommodate when possible, so please call me on 0411 463 390, or use the online booking calendar.

Online shopping is also available and there is a click and collect option too, to save on postage costs.  We understand that shopping online can be hard, as you need to check the quality of the fabrics, and check the colour matches as well.  We will give our honest opinion if two or more chosen fabrics go well together, when asked.  We will not put a purchase ahead of customer trust, so please ask if you are not sure.  

Our shop is situated in the little village of Garfield, in the West Gippsland area of Victoria.  We are approximately 15 minutes further out from Pakenham, just off the Monash Freeway, 20 minutes from Warragul, 45 minutes from Dandenong, and approximately 75 minutes from Melbourne CBD.

When it comes to making a patchwork quilt, a variety of fabrics can be used to create an eye-catching and cohesive design. Cotton and cotton blends are popular choices due to their durability and versatility. However, fabrics like flannel, wool, and silk can add texture and depth to a quilt. Upholstery fabrics or denim can add unexpected contrast and interest. It’s important to consider the weight and stretch of each fabric, as well as their colour and pattern, to ensure they work well together. Ultimately, the best fabric choices will depend on the design and intended use of the quilt. All our fabrics at The Quilters Closet are quality 100% cotton, unless otherwise stated, so feel free to browse our selections here. 

Choosing the right thread for patchwork quilting is important for achieving a polished final result. Here are a few factors to consider when selecting thread:

1. Color: Choose a thread color that matches the color of your patchwork fabric or one that blends in well. This will help camouflage any stitching lines that may be visible.

2. Weight: Choose a thread weight that is appropriate for the thickness of your fabric. A lighter thread weight (50-60) can be used for thinner fabrics, while a heavier weight (30-40) or even thicker may be necessary for thicker, more heavyweight fabrics.

3. Material: Cotton thread is a popular choice for patchwork quilting because it is strong, easy to work with, and doesn't stretch. Polyester thread is also a good option because it is strong and durable, and it won't shrink in the wash, however, polyester thread can cause friction when sewing, and can break down the cotton fabric over time, so it is not recommended for a quilt that is going to be an heirloom.

4. Quality: Invest in good quality thread to avoid breakage or skipped stitches. A high-quality thread will also create a smoother and stronger seam.

By considering these factors, you can choose the right thread for your patchwork quilting project, ensuring a beautiful finished quilt.

Quilt batting is the layer of insulation between the top and bottom layers of fabric in a quilt. There are several different types of batting available, and each has its own unique properties that affect the look and feel of the finished quilt. Here are some of the most common types of batting:

1. Cotton: Cotton batting is soft, lightweight, and easy to work with. It is a good choice for quilts that will be used and washed frequently. Be aware that ‘seeded’ cotton batting can cause issues for longarm quilters, which is why some refuse to work with it.

2. Polyester: Polyester batting is lightweight and has a nice loft, making it a good choice for quilts that require a lot of loft or extra warmth.  It is not recommended for baby quilts or children, as it’s not breathable like natural fibres.

3. Wool: Wool batting is naturally warm and breathable, making it a good choice for quilts that will be used in colder climates.

4. Bamboo: Bamboo batting is similar to cotton batting in terms of softness and weight, but it has a nice drape and is great for show quilts or wall hangings. It is also recommended for cot quilts.

When choosing batting for your quilt, consider the expected use of the quilt and the desired look and feel of the finished product. Cotton batting is a good all-purpose choice, but if you are making a specialty quilt, such as a wall hanging or baby quilt, you might consider a different type of batting. It is also important to consider the desired loft and the ease of handling as some types might be harder to work with than others.

Cutting fabric with scissors and cutting fabric with a rotary cutter each have their advantages and disadvantages.

Scissors are a classic cutting tool and a basic tool for any sewing enthusiast. They're easy to use, require little setup, and can be used to cut a wide range of fabrics. Scissors are great for cutting small shapes and curves with precision. They also do not require you to dress up for the job, besides a default comfortable outfit. You can browse our range of scissors and rotary cutters here. 

On the other hand, rotary cutters are a modern tool that has revolutionized the cutting of fabrics. They consist of a circular blade that rotates as you push it over the fabric, allowing you to cut through multiple layers of fabric with smooth edges. This saves time and energy, especially when you need to cut many straight lines, as in patchwork quilting, where accuracy is critical. Rotary cutters can also accommodate larger pieces of fabric and save you time in the cutting process.

However, rotary cutters require more setup, as you will need a cutting mat on which to use them, and often a ruler to guide the cut. They also require more skill to use, as the blade is exceptionally sharp, so the users must take care not to cut themselves or others accidentally.

In conclusion, both scissors and rotary cutters can be useful cutting tools depending on your project's requirements. Scissors are great for precise cutting, while rotary cutters are great for speed and accuracy.

The amount of fabric you will need for a patchwork quilt depends on the size of the finished quilt, the size of the patchwork squares or shapes, and the desired pattern. Here is a general guideline for estimating the amount of fabric required for patchwork quilts:

1. Determine the desired finished size of your quilt in inches.
2. Decide on the size of your patchwork blocks or shapes. Usually, precut fabrics are available in sizes of 5x5 inches, 10x10 inches, etc.
3. Calculate how many blocks or shapes you need to make to cover the finished area of the quilt. For example, if you want to make a 60-inch square patchwork quilt and are using 6x6-inch blocks, you would need 100 blocks in total (10 blocks per row x 10 rows).
4. Calculate the amount of fabric you need for each block or shape. You need to add an extra 1/4 inch at least to each side of the block to allow for the seam allowance.
5. Multiply the amount of fabric needed for each block by the total number of blocks required to cover the quilt's area.
6. Add extra fabric for the quilt's back, binding, and any borders you may add.

It's always a good idea to buy a bit more fabric than you think you'll need, to allow for some contingency fabric loss during cutting, possible distortions, or mistakes.

When it comes to patchwork quilting, a good sewing machine can make all the difference in terms of precision, speed, and efficiency. Here are some features to consider when choosing a sewing machine for patchwork quilting:

1. Throat space: Look for a sewing machine with a large throat space that can accommodate the bulk of your quilt project, it will allow for you to work with large quilts.

2. Feed dogs: A sewing machine with a free-motion quilting option will allow you to move the fabric in any direction under the needle, improving control, and quality of stitching.

3. Stitch length regulation: Precision is key in creating a stunning patchwork quilt. A machine with adjustable stitch length or a dedicated "piecing mode" will help with precise seam allowances.

4. Needle positioning: A machine with an adjustable needle position will allow you to move your needle to achieve accurate seams or quilt around shapes.

5. Walking foot: A walking foot feeds the fabric uniformly from both the top and bottom, which can prevent shifting and puckering of fabric layers.

6. Speed control: A machine with adjustable speed control allows for better control of stitch speed especially when dealing with complex stitching techniques.

Ultimately, choosing the best sewing machine for patchwork quilting will depend on your budget, skill level, and personal preferences. It is important to test the machine or read reviews from other quilters to see if it will accommodate your needs as a patchwork quilter.

Matching seams and points in patchwork quilting is key to achieving a crisp and professional look. Here are some tips for matching seams and points:

1. Cut accurately: Cut your patches accurately using a rotary cutter, ruler, and cutting mat to minimize discrepancies from the start.

2. Use pins: Pin the patches' corners together before sewing to keep the pieces from shifting during stitching. This helps keep points of the same patch meeting up accurately.

3. Check often: Before stitching the patches together, align the seams by bringing together the corresponding sides, putting the pins perpendicular to the seam to hold them together. Check the seams' alignment to make sure they match up perfectly.

4. Sew slowly: Sewing at a slow and steady pace when working on seams is key to ensuring your work meets your desired consistency. It is imperative that you maintain the correct seam allowance, as small variations can make a vast difference across an entire quilt, throwing out other seams on the way.

5. Press seams open: Pressing your seams open one at a time and then together with a hot steam iron helps ensure accurate joining of different patches.

6. Adjust seams if needed: If seams did not match up correctly, reverse-stitch the seam and repeat the process until they meet up accurately.

By cutting accurately, maintaining the correct seam allowance, using pins, checking alignments, being mindful of speed, pressing seams correctly, and adjusting the seams as needed will significantly help match up patches perfectly when making a patchwork quilt. It saves time and produces higher quality results.

Choosing the right quilt pattern for your skill level is essential to having a positive quilting experience. Here are some tips for selecting the right pattern based on your skill level:

1. Beginner: Look for patterns with simple designs, such as basic patchwork or straight-line quilting. Such patterns usually have clear and concise instructions with a minimum number of pieces to join together.

2. Intermediate: Intermediate quilting patterns involve some advanced techniques like curved piecing, applique, or more advanced piecing in geometric shapes. Look for patterns that require more pieces and include instructions for more detailed techniques.

3. Advanced: Advanced quilt patterns include more intricate designs or techniques, including color coordination, complex block assembly, and challenging piecing techniques. These patterns usually require more attention to detail and advanced knowledge of quilting.

4. Check reviews: Before selecting a pattern, check customer reviews or blogs to see if other quilters with the same skill level recommended the pattern. This can give you an idea of how difficult a pattern may be for your current skill level.

5. Testing: Try small testers before committing to a large project. This will help you gauge if you have the necessary skills to tackle a larger project before investing significant time and resources.

It is important to choose a pattern that challenges you, as this is how you will improve your skills. But simultaneously, it is essential to pick a pattern that is not too difficult, which can lead to discouragement. By checking the pattern's skill level, reviews, and attempting testers, it assures a comfortable challenge and a positive quilting experience.

A good starter project for your first quilt is a small, simple project that allows you to practice basic quilting skills. Here are some beginner-friendly project ideas:

1. A patchwork pillow: A patchwork pillow is an easy and satisfying project that can help you practice sewing straight lines and basic piecing techniques. You can choose a simple pattern or create your own design.

2. Quilted coasters: Quilted coasters make a perfect starter project. They are small, quick, and allow you to practice quilting and binding techniques in a small piece.

3. Table runner: A table runner is another fun and straightforward project ideal for a beginner. A simple design can make a huge impact, and you will learn how to handle larger fabrics, sew precise seams and bind a finished project.

4. Baby quilt: A small baby quilt would be a great choice for a first-time quilter. Sizes range from 30" x 30" upwards, and you can use simple shapes to make the project achievable. This project will help master patchwork ability while practicing quilting and finishing techniques.

When picking your first quilting project, aim for something that will teach you the essential skills needed to create a full-size quilt while being less complex. The goal is to have fun learning while gaining confidence in the process.

Keeping your quilt from bunching up or shifting during the quilting process is key to producing a beautiful and polished finished product. Here are some tips to prevent these issues:

1. Baste your layers: This means temporarily attaching the backing, batting, and top layers together using pins, fusible batting or basting spray that keeps the layers in place. It helps avoid the layers from slipping while quilting.  Try using 505 Basting Spray or Matilda’s Own Curved Safety Pins.

2. Start quilting from the centre: Start quilting at the centre of the quilt, and work your way outwards. This ensures the layers stay in place while quilting and prevents wrinkles or bunching.

3. Use the correct needle and thread: When hand quilting, a quilting needle is longer and sharper than a regular needle, which helps to penetrate through all the layers of the quilt fabric.  during machine quilting better. Choose threads that have high tensile strength to minimize breakage.

4. Consider using a walking foot: A walking foot holds all the layers together as you sew, preventing bunching or stretching of the layers. It helps to keep all three layers of the quilt together by feeding the quilt through without any layers slipping.

5. Take breaks: Pausing quilting in the middle of the project can prevent the quilted fabric from bunching up. This is helpful during the machine quilting process when handling larger projects.

By following these tips, it will ensure your quilt stays flat, smooth, and evenly quilted. Quilting requires patience and persistence, and by acquiring the necessary skills, you can create a finished product that you're satisfied with.

Keeping your quilt from bunching up or shifting during the quilting process is key to producing a beautiful and polished finished patchwork quilt. Here are some tips to prevent these issues:

1. Baste your layers: This means temporarily attaching the backing, batting, and top layers together using pins, fusible batting or basting spray that keeps the layers in place. It helps avoid the layers from slipping while quilting.  Try using 505 Basting Spray or Matilda’s Own Curved Safety Pins.

2. Start quilting from the centre: Start quilting at the centre of the quilt, and work your way outwards. This ensures the layers stay in place while quilting and prevents wrinkles or bunching.

3. Use the correct needle and thread: When hand quilting, a quilting needle is longer and sharper than a regular needle, which helps to penetrate through all the layers of the quilt fabric.  With machine quilting Choose threads that have high tensile strength to minimize breakage.

4. Consider using a walking foot: A walking foot holds all the layers together as you sew, preventing bunching or stretching of the layers. It helps to keep all three layers of the quilt together by feeding the quilt through without any layers slipping.

5. Take breaks: Pausing quilting in the middle of the project can prevent the quilted fabric from bunching up. This is helpful during the machine quilting process when handling larger projects.

By following these tips, it will ensure your quilt stays flat, smooth, and evenly quilted. Quilting requires patience and persistence, and by acquiring the necessary skills, you can create a finished product that you're satisfied with.

We are always here to help you.

If there are a few patchwork fabrics you like, but are not sure if they will work together, please let us know which fabrics you are considering, and I will send you a photo of them together, and will also give my opinion for you to make your own decision.

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