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What is Lap Quilting?

By Sarah Sullins
Updated: Jan 21, 2024

Lap quilting is the process of making a quilt by sewing the individual blocks first, then assembling the pre-finished sections together to make the full quilt. These smaller sections can be held with a hoop or lap quilting frame, or simply held loosely by hand. The process of creating a lap quilt can be simple or hard, depending on the pattern used. There are a few different fabrics that may be used and a variety quilt stuffing, all of which are usually available to purchase at fabric and craft stores or on the Internet.

A lap quilting frame is usually a small, curved, rectangular frame that fits in a person's lap while she is quilting. It holds the front and back of the quilt tightly while the person stitches the pieces of quilt together. A hoop is held in the hands and is available in many different sizes. Lap quilting frames usually cost more than hoops do, but the frame allows the quilter to have both hands free for quilting.

There are many considerations a person should think about before beginning a lap quilting project. Organization is important, because each piece must be broken down and sewn individually. The quilter must determine whether she will be sewing the pieces of the quilt by hand or with a sewing machine. She must also decide what kind of stuffing or batting to use in the quilt. The type of fabric used to make the quilt must also be determined.

The fabric used on a quilt will vary, depending on the person's preferences. Wash and wear fabric is typically used by many quilters because it does not require any ironing. Other fabrics like cotton can be used, but it must be ironed after it has been put through the washer and dryer.

Quilt batting is important because it is what will make the quilt soft and affect the thickness. There are various types, such as cotton, wool, alpaca, bamboo, and silk. Each type of stuffing is different in the way it breathes, can be washed, and how warm it is. Extra batting can be used in lap quilting if a more comfortable quilt is needed.

Learning all that is necessary to begin lap quilting can be difficult. Many towns and cities offer quilting classes that may prove to be helpful to a beginner. Some may be offered by local churches, while others might be provided by a local senior center or college.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
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