The art of quilting goes back generations; a skill passed from mother to daughter and family to family. A quilt can instantly evoke a wonderful memory or a long-gone loved one; the threads of a quilt can be the threads that bind one time in history to another. Those who quilt do so with an unrivaled passion – and the expert handling of quilting tools to accomplish their task.
The modern quilt maker has the choice of doing so by hand or using any one of the contemporary machines that have given quilt making an easier, more convenient alternative. There is no right answer when it comes to machine versus hand; whichever method is more comfortable for the quilter becomes part of their quilting tools of choice.
Quilting tools are largely dependent on the quilt maker’s personal style. For those who prefer the traditional hand sewing like the quilts of yesteryear, then there a few quilting tools that are par for the course, such as a ruler, sewing scissors, quilting pins, measuring tape, quilting thread in the colors that match or complement your fabric, needles, and for the safety conscious among us – a thimble.
Ultimately, the most important of the quilting tools is the fabric that the quilt maker chooses. The style, color, and texture of the fabric will determine the look and feel of the final product; while traditional quilt makers would choose their fabric based on the scraps they had available to them, today’s quilters choose fabric largely based on the use of the quilt. Soft pastels are often used for baby quilts, bolder colors are often used to complement a room where the quilt will be hung, or different blocks of fabric are used to commemorate special events. The choices are virtually endless when it comes to choosing fabric.
Modern quilt makers find the use of a pattern or template to be an essential part of their quilting tools. Such items help guide novice quilters and provide a bevy of new ideas for experienced quilt makers.
Quilting tools are varied, and ultimately, are very personal to the quilt enthusiast’s tastes and style of working. But, the end result is all the same – a beautiful quilt to be enjoyed for generations to come.