Here is some information on what I find works for me when I make a quilt. The first five blocks in this series are good patterns for beginners. You can make a nice wall hanging with them.
Since we are only doing one block for each pattern I found it works fine to cut out the paper templates and draw around them. If you will be using them for several blocks making cardboard or plastic templates would be better. This is also the case when a block requires several copies of the same shape.
You can make your templates by using the template plastic sold in stores or you can do it the old fashioned way by drawing the shapes on cereal box cardboard or sandpaper.
Quilters usually press seams all to one side rather than spreading them apart as is done when making clothing. When possible I press toward the darker fabric.
I also press so that when two seams are sewn together the seam is pressed one way on one side and the other way on the opposite side. It's very hard to get the seams to go together right if both pairs of seams are stacked on each other.
When seams intersect there are various ways to get them to match. One is by careful pinning. Another I use especially in difficult spots is to machine baste the spots where the seams meet. Other times if the seam match easily I simply put the seams so that the two pressed sets are right against each other and sew.
Don't trim the finished block edges until you have made all the blocks. In making a sampler quilt like this all blocks don't come out exactly the same size. Measure them then trim at the medium size. When possible trim at exactly ¼ inch where triangles go to the edge.
© 2007 Judy Anne Breneman (For your personal use only. Please write to me for permission before you copy this for others.)
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General Quilting Instructions For the Beginner
A good introduction to quilt making methods with great information on using templates.
Cranston Village: Quilting 101: Getting Started
Here you will find a series of articles on how to make a quilt from purchasing fabric to binding the quilt.
Terms Used in Quilting
A good introduction to common terms used in quilting.
Quilting Books: Quilt Patterns and History: Quilting for Beginners
Judy Anne's List of Books for Beginning Quilters.