Quilting From the Outside In

unmarked topNormally after you baste a quilt and begin quilting, you start from the center and work your way out.  The theory behind that is that if there are going to be any ripples in the quilt top, you can then “work them out” towards the edges as you go.

With this “Center Diamond” quilt, I did just the opposite.  You see, this was a sample quilt for a beginning hand quilting class that I taught last fall.  I threw something simple together for my students to practice on using an old-fashioned four-board quilting frame.  On the right is the quilt top after it was sewn. 

Below is the quilt on the frame with a few of the students working on it.


I decided to finish the quilt up on my own, and because it had quilting around part of the outside border, I opted to just start on the outside and work my way in.

As long as a quilt will lay perfectly flat and is pinned or basted well, it really doesn’t matter where you begin. 

All of the borders are now finished, and I am now ready to start quilting on the center section, which is lime green (not the yellow that it looks here).

Here is my professional quilt holder showing you the quilt with everything quilted except the green center.

fleurdeCaron Amish-style

Quilting is done with black thread.  I think I will put a dark grey binding on this. 

What do you think?

3 thoughts on “Quilting From the Outside In

  1. I am quilting a queen size untraditionally too… not starting at the borders but doing all the sashings first to stabilize the intricate quilting I plan for the blocks… like you I BASTED WELL! And I am having no shifting so far! Loving this project… and loving yours! Can't wait to see you post your finish! The quilting you AND your students have done is amazing! Kathi


  2. I think it is GORGEOUS! A dark gray binding would be perfect! I like a binding that pops, and I think a dark gray binding would do that perfectly. I admit that I'm not brave enough to work from the outside in, even though I'm exceedingly liberal with the extra batting and backing. 😉


  3. I think as long as the quilt is basted and in a frame, it doesn't matter where you begin. When I quilt wit a hoop in my lap. I still begin in the center. For the Gala quilt with many people working on it and no frame. we use 3M thinsulate batting and baste every three to four inches. That batting has a tacky feel and does not slip even without a hoop. I, too, vote for the gray binding.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s