If you know how to hand tie a quilt, then you can finish quilting your quilt in a fraction of the time that it might take you using a different method of quilting. Hand tying a quilt is sometimes regarded as the beginners’ quilting option, but it can add a real design touch to a quilt.
What to use for hand tying quilts
Cut a piece of thread about 20″ long. Use a strong, natural thread. I’ve used embroidery thread here, but crochet thread can be used. I have even used wool before now, but be careful not to use anything too thick because it’s difficult to pull through the three layers and it can ten to pull the wadding through the quilt top while you are quilting your quilt.
Hand tying quilts – basics
Push the needle down through all three layers of fabric and then up again about 1/4″ away. Leave a tail of about 2″ of thread to tie the quilt.
Take the needle back to where it first went in and repeat the stitch. I find this extra step is worth it to secure the knot.
Cut the thread about 2″ away from the stitch. You should now have two threads both 2″ long. Tie these in a double knot. You can leave the ends that length or trim them to about an inch. I wouldn’t recommend trimming them more than that.
Tying multiple knots with one thread
In order to speed up the process of hand tying your quilt, you could make the stitch for the centre of the first knot and then put your needle through the fabric about 4″ away and repeat the process there.
Cut the thread half way between the two stitches and then tie both the knots. That way you could sew four or five stitches and then stop to cut and tie the knots when you run out of thread.
The back of the hand tied quilt
On the back of the hand tied quilt all that shows is a single stitch for each knot that you have tied in the quilt.
It’s worth deciding beforehand whether as you hand tie your quilt you want to tie a knot in the quilt at one particular place in each block or what pattern you want to use (if any), so that you can mark dots if necessary for your hand tied quilting stitches with a fabric marker.
You can see hand tying used with other types of quilting by clicking here.