100 Things Every Quilter Should Do

 100 Things Every Quilter Should Do

Recently I ran across an online list called “100 Books to Read Before You Die.” I didn’t wholly agree with the list (I mean—Bridget Jones’s Diary. Seriously?), but after a few clicks I discovered that there were also lists of places to travel, movies to see, candies to try and beers to drink. (Really? There are 100 kinds of beer? I have to get out more.)

beer 100 Things Every Quilter Should Do

But anyway, all these lists got me to thinking, and I decided to come up with my very own list.

100 Things Every Quilter
Should Do Before She Dies

MH900427329 100 Things Every Quilter Should Do

  1. Visit a quilt shop.
  2. Make a Nine Patch.
  3. Make a Log Cabin.
  4. Label a quilt.
  5. Figure yardage for a quilt.
  6. Learn about warp and weft.
  7. Use a rotary cutter.
  8. Use templates.
  9. Paper piece a quilt block.
  10. Hand applique a quilt block.
  11. Make a yo-yo.
  12. Embellish a quilt.
  13. Try free motion quilting.
  14. Stitch in the ditch.

    gqs5 100 Things Every Quilter Should Do

    You’re never too old to try something new!

  15. Try hand quilting.
  16. Bind a quilt.
  17. Miter the corners of quilt binding.
  18. Join the ends of quilt binding.
  19. Sew diagonal seams.
  20. Use a walking foot.
  21. Attend a guild meeting.
  22. Visit Houston for International Quilt Festival.
  23. Have a quilt appraised.
  24. Visit a quilt museum.
  25. Go on a quilt retreat.
  26. Try curved piecing.
  27. Miter the borders.
  28. Learn to do blanket stitch by hand.
  29. See a local quilt show.

    quilt show 2 100 Things Every Quilter Should Do

    Attend a local quilt show to learn and enjoy.

  30. Put your quilt in a local quilt show.
  31. Sell raffle tickets on a quilt.
  32. Take a road trip with quilt friends.
  33. Create a Pinterest board with quilts.
  34. Make a 3-D quilt block.
  35. Donate a quilt to a good cause.
  36. Make a sampler quilt.
  37. Make an art quilt.
  38. Try bobbin work.
  39. Learn to maintain your sewing machine.

    k4384193 100 Things Every Quilter Should Do

    Learn to maintain your sewing machine.

  40. Add rickrack to a quilt.
  41. Design a quilt. (Remember, you don’t necessarily have to make the quilt!)
  42. Change/tweak/alter a pattern to make it your own.
  43. Make a color wheel with fabric swatches.
  44. Chat about quilting with a stranger.
  45. Go on a blog tour.
  46. Give a quilt as a wedding/graduation/retirement gift.
  47. Visit Paducah during the AQS Show.
  48. Take a class with a nationally known teacher.
  49. Use some fabric you dislike.

    yoogly10 100 Things Every Quilter Should Do

    Anita Grossman Solomon didn’t care for this cat fabric celebrating the new Millenium.

  50. Participate in Show & Tell.
  51. Volunteer for a job in a quilt group.
  52. Use a color you detest.
  53. Make a quilt inspired by nature.
  54. Get up early to quilt or stay up late to quilt.
  55. Make a scrap quilt.
  56. Make a tote bag.
  57. Make a postcard quilt.
  58. Make a baby quilt and gift it to a newborn.
  59. Understand the basics of caring for quilts.
  60. Borrow a quilting book from the public library.
  61. Teach someone else to quilt.
  62. Creatively piece a backing for one of your quilts.

    pieced quilt back4 100 Things Every Quilter Should Do

    Julie Herman at Jaybird Quilts sometimes pieces her quilt backs.

  63. Apply a piped binding, or some variation of it.
  64. Post quilt pics to Facebook.
  65. Install quilty wallpaper on your computer.
  66. Put a quilty bumper sticker on your car.
  67. Cuss mildly when you realize you’ve been sewing air (because you ran out of bobbin thread)
  68. Read your sewing machine manual cover to cover.
  69. Learn to thread baste.
  70. Learn to pin baste.
  71. Use basting spray.
  72. Help a friend make a quilt.
  73. Make a quilt for a special child.
  74. Make a quilt for a spouse or partner.
  75. Make a quilt for a friend.
  76. Include your quilts in your will (i.e. who gets them).
  77. Determine your favorite thread for piecing.
  78. Understand the concept of value.
  79. Understand the mathematics of quilt blocks.
  80. Apply a bias binding.
  81. Take a guild speaker to dinner.
  82. Comment on a quilt-related blog post.

    comments 100 Things Every Quilter Should Do

    Leaving a comment on a blog post is easy and fun!

  83. Make a mystery quilt.
  84. Take part in a block exchange.
  85. Write how-to instructions for making a quilt block.
  86. Watch a quilting video.
  87. Know the difference between lengthwise and crosswise grain.
  88. Know the parts of a sewing machine needle and why they matter.
  89. Organize your stash.
  90. Know the names of hand sewing needles used for different tasks.
  91. Finish a UFO.
  92. Purchase fabric on impulse.
  93. Try sewing with precuts.
  94. Trade fabrics with quilt friends.
  95. Identify your ancestors who quilted.
  96. Visit a quilt shop while on vacation.

    Singer Treadle Machine 100 Things Every Quilter Should Do

    Treadling is enjoying a comeback.

  97. Sew on a treadle for old time’s sake.
  98. Subscribe to a quilting magazine.
  99. Become a regular reader of a quilting blog.
  100. Go on a Shop Hop.

These are just my ideas. Maybe yours are different. I’d love to hear what things you think should be added to the list, or left off. When you think about all the things you’ve already done, can you see how much quilting has enriched your life? Isn’t it wonderful?

Get a printer-friendly version of the list, with checkboxes, so you can get started, and please leave a comment with your own ideas for the list.

About Diane Harris

I'm Interactive Editor for Quiltmaker magazine in Golden, Colorado, USA. For six years, I've been writing pattern instructions and product reviews, and doing a host of other tasks necessary to help produce a national pattern magazine. Now I work remotely from rural Nebraska to generate some of our online content. I manage the QM Scrap Squad, our blog tours and our Quilt-Alongs. I have one of the best jobs in the world.
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116 Responses to 100 Things Every Quilter Should Do

  1. Cathy F says:

    Love the list, Pat! I have 27 that I haven’t done. I guess I better get to work! Is there anyone who hasn’t bought fabric on impulse???? I surely don’t know anyone.

  2. Mary P says:

    Well, 93 down, 7 to go!

  3. Susan Slaton says:

    I have done them all!! I knew I was a fan, but now I know I am a fanatic! I have been to a quilt show in France, too.

  4. Jane Martyn says:

    Great list. I have 6 to go. Yes, travel internationally would be a good one to add, and I have attended a quilt show in England. We may use this for one of our friendship meeting just to compare notes!

  5. lynda hempel says:

    the only one I have a problem with is 89. When I try to organize my stash, I always find something new I want to do………….quilting is my bag.

    • Sarah Carey says:

      #89!
      I feel the same way….I’m good at starting…it’s like Christmas when you go through your stash

  6. DIGNA WILSON says:

    I have like maybe 40 things done on the list.I still making improvements on my skills.Like the list .

  7. Jodie says:

    I’m halfway there…thanks for the list. This will be fun challenge for myself.

  8. Judy Knorr says:

    I have done all but two!

  9. Tina Sheppard says:

    Love the list. I am a new quilter so this gives me great hopes for the future. Thanks for the list!

  10. Melissa D says:

    I am at 86 and would probably never get to 100 – just because I have enough time sucks in my life and plan to never add Pinterest to that list !

  11. Becky Burgess says:

    I am a number 68 — one of these days I will actually finish it!! I find myself reading it more and more as I try new things!

  12. Jaynie G says:

    91 out of 100…has anyone really read their sewing machine manual from cover to cover? LOL Interesting list!

    • Old Begonia says:

      Um…yeah…all of them. =}} That’s one of the few things I learned about sewing from my mom: read the instructions. Always.

    • DIGNA WILSON says:

      I do i have a new sewing machine ,and the only i can change stiches and other stuff is looking at the manual..

    • Sherri says:

      Yep I have, some more than once…. Lots of great info in those! I keep mine (for my ellissimo right by the sewing machine….) lovin this blog! Sherri

  13. Lisa M says:

    Great list and have done many of these but I think my list would be more accurate by listing number 92 (buying fabric on impulse) 100 times!

  14. Mary Easley says:

    Find my great grandmother’s Crazy Quilt that has been misplaced ;(

  15. Linda says:

    What a fun list! 465

  16. Kathy says:

    Thanks for the amazing list, currently at 75.

  17. Kathy says:

    Thanks for the amazing list, I got 75 so there are still 25 to go.

    Stuck in Africa makes it a bit difficult to get to some of the best quilt shows.

  18. Vickie blose says:

    Houston and an Alaska quilt cruise

  19. Fuzzy says:

    Well…. 97/100….. mmm not bad…. but as ill never travel outside my country [to much to see and do here]Houston & Paducah will never happen I’m from the land down under there is always something new to learn or something new to try but this is a great place start

  20. Polly says:

    I have tried 92 out of 100 on your list, I have not made a grandmothers flower garden quilt. I think I will make one a doll quilt size. Also, I would add – make an art quilt.
    Enjoy your blog. Thanks

  21. Jeannie says:

    101. Go on a Quilting Cruise or other Quilt-Based Vacation. I’m saving up my craft show sales to travel to Bali to go fabric shopping with a tour group, hope to do that in the next five years or so. :)

  22. mary oddan says:

    96, hope Housron and Paducah will be checked off. The quilt museum in Lincoln Nebraska could be added. Restoreing or replicating acheirloom.

  23. Wendy says:

    There are lots of things on the list I’ve done and a few I won’t (sorry NOT a fan of Facebook), but my favorite thing to do on the list is #92 Buy fabric on impulse. I think that is how I’ve acquired most of my stash. It calls to me, but it doesn’t always tell me right away what it wants to be. ;)

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  25. Terri says:

    I’m having trouble keeping count. I will have to print it and mark them off. But, I challenged my family to guess how many. It’s going to be fun seeing who is closest!

  26. Tanya Stevens says:

    I can’t keep count, I have done many of these things tho. I just enjoy quilting and everything that goes with it. I hate shopping, unless it’s for fabric ;)

  27. Debra Revay says:

    Didn’t keep count of how many things I’ve done, but there are not too many that I haven’t done. Neat list and I need to print it so that I can mark off what I have accomplished and work on the what’s left. Thanks for posting your list.

  28. Annette says:

    I love your list! I have only been quilting for 4 1/2 years and it scares me that I have done lots on your list already, I guess I will have to keep going and do them all.

  29. Annette says:

    I love your list! I have only been quilting for 4 1/2 years and it scares me that I have done lots on your list already, I guess I will have to keep going and do them all.

  30. Sonia Folsom says:

    Love your list. have done 92/100 to date. Use a mid arm or long arm to quilt, male a garment, make 12 squares for a calendar, English paper piecing hexagons, and help a school make a quilt using the students to make the blocks.

  31. Sarah Jeffries says:

    I enjoyed reading through your list and smiled to myself as I came across those that I have done. Thanks,Sarah

  32. Barb S. says:

    What a great list to share at a quilt guild, the quilter who has the most crossed off her list should win a fat quarter!

  33. Beverly says:

    This was a really nice list. I am still surprised that I can mark off so many already. I look forward to printing this off so I can see how many are done.

  34. Cathey says:

    On my list I’ve added: Teach your husband to quilt. Give a Quilt of Valor. As for the list , I’ve got some things to do before I can check off everything.

  35. Susan says:

    Travel internationally with quilting friends to see a quilt show!!! Such a blast and quite the learning experience :)

  36. Rita says:

    I wonder when there will be 100 responses?

  37. Julie Dunn says:

    Great list, I didn’t count, but have quite a few. I’m goin got print the list and take it to our next get together and see how we do.

  38. Dot Clark says:

    Thank you I can’t wait to get started on my unfinished items.

  39. Pat Sisler says:

    I have most of the list – going to Houston & Paducah are not going to happen. I agree trying a long arm, also making a quilt that features embroidery (hand or machine), keeping for yourself a quilt you love (not giving them all away), working on a round robin and a raffle quilt, after a lot of stash building and not using it give some to a charity organization.
    Great idea!

  40. Mary C in WA says:

    92 out of 100 isn’t too bad. Does eating Dinner with a guest Speaker count? Thanks for adding to my Quilter’s Bucket list.

  41. Great list – there are only about 5 or 6 that I still need to do.

  42. Dale Wallace says:

    I bought the last 100 Blocks and would LOVE to win this one :)

  43. jennifer ward says:

    I’m an intermediate level quilter, I guess – with a lot more to learn! I’ve dobe some things on the list. I just added ric-rac to a baby quilt. Looks really cute!

  44. Theresa Fjeldheim says:

    This is such a fun list. Is it OK if I print it out and share it at our next Guild meeting?

  45. Lucinda Welenc says:

    I’ve tried free motion quilting on my Singer treadle, and wasn’t impressed with the results. I might do something small on it, in an emergency, but not anything else.

  46. Stacey King says:

    As a beginner to sewing and quilting, I thought this list was wonderful. In four months I have already done more on your list than I imagined. This list helped me to know what I still need to learn (which is a lot). Thank you for posting it!!

  47. Paula C says:

    Love the list! I so want to go to Houston, but really want to go to Paducha, I could cross two off the list by visiting the museum while there.

  48. Randi Johnson says:

    I consider myself an intermediate quilter who has tried a couple of advanced patterns; would LOVE to try a few of the blocks in the new 100 Blocks!

  49. Nancy says:

    Make a quilted wallhanging for every holiday/season.

  50. Rosebud says:

    Quilting Vinyl window decals are pretty cool.

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  52. Joni Keskey says:

    Donate a quilt to a charity.

    Paint a quilt block.

  53. Shari Rich says:

    Love the list!! As I read it, I was thinking, gee I’ve done more than I thought. I didn’t keep track of the number, but about 75%. A lot of the undone ones, I was thinking, I can do that, but then I came to organize my stash. Oh no, I don’t have enough time to do that, if I do that, it takes away my quilting time!
    I’m a little techno challenged, but I’m going to try to print this list, and take it to my guild meeting. I’m sure some of our quilters are at 95%!

  54. Back in the 60‘s I made many of my kids cloths on a Singer treadle machine. Wish I still had it.

  55. In my eairly sewing days I made many cloths for my two kids on a Singer treadle machine. Wish I still hade it.

  56. Colleen Froats says:

    Wow! I’ve accomplished 89 of the 100—only 11 to go….then what? is my quilting journey fulfilled? or do I come up with a new 100 to do?

  57. Dorothy Clear says:

    I love this list, for it reminds me of how old I am but also reminds me there are still some things to do. Visit a quilt museum was one of the items I crossed off my bucket list by attending the show in New York City of Paula Nadelstern’s work. A good friend and I took the train, staying in a nearby hotel and enjoyed the City and its people…and the museum.

  58. Margaret says:

    I can’t get the pdf version to load. Help!

  59. Ioleen says:

    I didn’t see make a mystery quilt on the list. Just started one and go far all is going well – the end quilt well we have to wait and see.

  60. So fun! I better get to work!

  61. Faye Duzan says:

    I love this list. I don’t have a lot to check off yet but I printed out the list. It is a good set of goals!

  62. Michelle says:

    Wow-what great idea’s! I’ll be printing this out & marking off each one as I go, LOL Very fun-thanks!

  63. I’ve got 24 to go. Thanks for the list. This was fun to read and think about. Have a super day!

  64. JoAn GODFREY says:

    i have done all but 3!!! haven’t been to houston, had a quilt appraised or made a postcard quilt. i have made postcards and traded them though.

  65. Denise says:

    Great list. I have surprised myself because I have done a lot of these but there are some I am not likely to do. I am in the UK and whilst I would love to go to Houston, realistically I think I would change going to the Houston show for going to the show at the NEC in Birmingham which is probably our biggest show in the UK. I can dream I make it as far as Houston though!

    A friend and I have recently started a new quilt group in our town. It is early days but things are going well and we have a blog/website. I hope you don’t mind but I am going to post a link to this on our website to share with our members. It would be interesting to see how many of the list our members have completed.

  66. Linda Ross says:

    Don’t everything except 66, which will never do! And 86 which I will do! Quilting a way of life.

  67. Nancy Cassida says:

    I would love to be able to visit Houston for the International Quilt Festival, am going to go to Paducah next summer, but not during the AQS show (don’t like crowds).

  68. Susan says:

    I printed the list so I can remember what I haven’t done!! # 82 done today!!

  69. Shirley says:

    Checking off #82 now. Great idea, yes we all have different lists, but this was fun. Thank you!

  70. Shirley says:

    Checking off #82 now! 90/100. Great list, yes, we all have different lists, but this was fun! Thank you!

  71. Roberta Zöllner says:

    How about participating in a group quilt and/ or a Round Robin? Dyeing your own fabric, quilt-as-you-go, reversible quilts, quilted soft sculpture… We will never run out of new things to try!

  72. Elizabeth Monahan says:

    I’ve done 90 of the 100. The only ones of the remaining 10 that I desperately want to do is go to IQF and toAQS in Paducah. I’ve never made a sampler quilt, but I figure all the different techniques and blocks I’ve used add up to more than one!

  73. Linda Towers says:

    I have achieved 90 out of 100. Been to Paducah, but not at Quilt Show time. Been to Houston Intl. which I would recommend to everyone! Have done 92 a lot! I would add using freezer paper, printing photos on fabric, and using computer software for quilt design to the list. Also maybe trapunto?

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  75. Wendy says:

    As an Australian there are several things on this list I haven’t done and would love to do. Visit Houston and definately Padukah would be top of my bucket list, I have been a quilter for just over fifteen years and have done almost everything else with a couple of other exceptions. On my list would be do not copy designers patterns to share, and support your local quilt shop. Great idea by the way. Regards Wendy

  76. Cindy B says:

    I would add: use Elmer’s Washable glue to baste a quilt. I won’t baste any other way now or ever!

  77. Cathryn says:

    This fun list will be at our next quilt retreat. Should be fun to see how may of them each of us has done. I have a feeling we’ll all be in the 85-95% done. Then we’ll add to the list.

  78. Gina says:

    You’ve covered everything I can think of! Great list!

  79. Teri Reymann says:

    I’ve accomplished 87 of the 100, but have done a lot of other things not on the list! I owned a quilt shop, have flown to a quilt retreat, used a long arm, done a round robin with online friends and others!! Quilting is my passion! Thank you for this great list!

  80. Great list! I have done 95 out of 100. I agree with above, there are other things I’ve done that are not on the list. I joined a challenge blog, http://fiberofallsorts.blogspot.com, which helped me accomplish a lot. I learned more about blogging and communicating with blog friends, I have finished lots of UFOs, at least one a month, and I even saw a video on one blog of a gal free motion quilting on a treadle machine! With quilting, the sky is the limit. My latest accomplishment is being president of the local quilt guild. What a learning experience! Happy sewing.

    • Lucinda Welenc says:

      I’ve tried free-motion quilting on a treadle singer, and wasn’t impressed with the result. Maybe something small, in an emergency, but not for a larger quilt.

  81. Jackie McEachran says:

    92 of 100 .. Most of the ones I havn’t done I probably will never do. The rest were fun to do.. particularly #92 and 94 I do that a lot.

  82. Susan Paxton says:

    Well as a newby to quilting…I have done over half of them…still have a long way to go!! Being 70 years old not sure if I can complete them all before I expire!!!LOL

  83. Laura says:

    I did number 67 today.

  84. I have 97 out of 100 (no piping, quilt sticker on car or quilt wallpaper). However, I do have quilted clothing, used a long arm machine, HAVE a quilt blog, subscribe to at least three quilt magazines, did volunteer work at a museum that was very quilt related, and used my own hand dyed/painted/marbled fabric in a quilt.

  85. Diane Harris says:

    My apologies, I had a mistake in the link. I have fixed it so the downloadable pdf is working now.

  86. Norma says:

    I get “page not found” when I click on the printer friendly list. Help?

  87. Laura Syler says:

    98 out of 100… I guess being a charter member and past Pres of the Quilters Guild of Dallas helped me check off a bunch!! Have not done a blog hop yet, (better hop on that one!) and not a real fan of machine sewing (had a very traumatic experience trying to learn to sew garments as a teenager!) so bobbin work is interesting, but I’d really rather do it by hand!
    Fun check list!

  88. Kat says:

    Link for printer friendly page is not working. Help

  89. Rose Ann says:

    I am so disappointed that the link to print out would not work……….

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  91. Kaye M. says:

    Here’s one to add to the list–rip out or “un-sew” a seam!!

  92. Patricia Austin says:

    Looks like I have a lot to do, 75 out of 100. I agree with the Long Arm Quilter tryouts.

  93. Jan says:

    I have done 89 of these. I haven’t used a treadle machine but I own one thanks to my sister. I want to go to Paducah and Houston but would not consider my life incomplete without that. ;)

  94. Carol Hubacek says:

    I’m able to check off 90 of your 100. Guess its time for a Blog Tour next week.

  95. Nicole Brouillette says:

    I would say try freemotion longarm quilting, participate in a sewing bee, participate in a round robin, participate in a block exchange…and finish the quilt!!!, make a quilt for a sick friend, raffle a quilt to benefit a charity or school…there are so many things that a quilter can make a difference in someone else’s life! :D

  96. Becky Ball says:

    I’ve never been to Houston show, but it is on my bucket list. Never made a postcard (why?), and I think listing quilts in a will is a good idea, but I usually give mine to them while I’m still kicking. I can tell you rick-rack shrinks more than the rest of the block and I only do quilty signs, not anything sticky. I like the license plate holders the best. Otherwise, been there, done that to the rest of the list.

    I would also add the one about trying a long-arm – it is a great experience and now you can rent time on one a lot of places. I would also add make a memory quilt – it is quite an experience and you learn to work with different weight fabrics at the same time. Making an inspirational quilt would be good, but maybe that is like an art quilt.

    I like this list – it is a fun exercise.

  97. Colette says:

    Anne, you got me beat. I only had 89 out of 100. Diane…Maybe add something about computerized quilting/imaging. Or, make a modern quilt. Or, try a long arm machine. Or, and I cringe when I suggest it, but try tying a quilt. How about judging a quilt contest before the judges do to see how you did in your judging. Or, be a 4-H quilting leader. Or, teach your guild members a new skill/block/pattern. “I could go on forever baby.” :-)

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  99. Anne Wiens says:

    95 out of a hundred….so far.

  100. Susan Rubino says:

    Support your local Longarm quilter.

    Support your local quilt store.

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