How do you do that fill?

I have been quilting away on the whole cloth quilt with perle cotton thread.ย  Several people have asked about how to do the fill (the densely quilted area between the feathers) so here it is.

This is the area to be filled

fill demo 001

in the small area on the right it is really just tightly packed rows of “echo quilting”

fill demo 002

I filled in the very narrow area, and did one row of echo quilting around …I will go around a few more times to fill it in

fill demo 003

the larger area is similar, but I like to divide it into smaller spaces…echo quilting up to the line of stitching that divides the space

fill demo 004

I am going back and forth in this area

fill demo 005

keep adding

fill demo 006

eventually the space is full and I section off another area ( it is easier to do smaller areas ..less turning of the hoop and direction changes)

fill demo 007

Now fill this area the same way

fill demo 008

Keep adding rows

fill demo 009

until it is filled

fill demo 010

then fill the last area the same way

fill demo 011

until it is full

fill demo 012

I like the different directions of the stitches …it adds texture….if you want a different more regular look do all the stitches in the same direction .

To give an Idea of scale here it a penny on the stitching

fill demo 013

and here is the whole thing so far

fill demo 014

Lots more to do!


Happy Quilting


54 thoughts on “How do you do that fill?

  1. Thank you so much for this demo! I have always wondered how you do that.

  2. Kathi says:

    Now I really think I can Tim… now to get to the quilt I want to do it to! lol Thanks for a GREAT pic and word tutorial on how you do such amazing work… one little part at a time ๐Ÿ™‚ Kathi

  3. Sharon Snow says:

    Thank you very much for the demo. It makes more sense now..

  4. KerryCan says:

    So . . . about how long did it take you to complete the section you showed us? Just a ballpark?

  5. Susan says:

    Lovely! Are you going to do trapunto with this one too?

  6. Elaine Nixon says:

    I have just found you! Lovely work, I can see that you love to hand quilt. Would you share your thoughts on your favorite batting, needle size etc. ?

    • timquilts says:

      Wow….that is a really big question…and there is not one answer…it depends on what I am doing, and every quilt is different. As I start each new quilt I post about what batting I am using, and what needle and thread…..but there is not one answer

      • Dawn says:

        This was some of my questions to. I will pay more attention as you start your quilting to see what you are using. Also what size are your safety basting pins? Brand name please? Thank you so much! This was a great step by step, with pictures explanation that made a lot of sense.
        Thanks so much Tim.

      • timquilts says:

        I really don’t know what brand the safety pins are….I bought them at JoAnn fabrics….but I couldn’t tell you the brand or the size….in fact I have at least 3 different brands and sizes and they all work…I buy whatever is the cheapest since I have at least 5 quilts basted and in progress at any given time I need a lot of pins!

    • Victoria says:

      Elaine, do what I did when I discovered Timโ€ฆI went through every single post in his Archiveโ€ฆsome several times. Never can get enough inspiration from him. Enjoy!

  7. audrey says:

    Wow! Lots of work. I bet it feels faster with the Perle cotton though. Great looking quilt!

    • timquilts says:

      not any faster with all the stitching I am doing, in fact I think it would be faster with regular sized needle and thread which is easier on the hands and less work to pull through the fabric….but the perle cotton is adding the color to this quilt and I couldnt get that look with a thinner thread

  8. Linda says:

    Thank you for the Great Lesson!!! Now to put it to practice. I am still working on this snowman quilt and now I’m at the bottom border and a long side. After working on it for an hour each day I get bored or frustrated and move on to another project. No wonder I don’t have it finished!! LOL

  9. melissa says:

    Tim, you’re the most prolific hand quilter ever!! Thanks for inspiring and for sharing. I look forward to reading your blog posts each morning and I’ve enjoyed your progress. I learned something fantastic today. Thanks for teaching us.


  10. Sara says:

    Awesome, once again!

  11. Nancy dennis says:

    Thanks will have to try this out.

  12. Robbie Payne says:

    Wow! What more is there to say but WOW! Your workmanship is amazing! And what a great tip on ‘fill’!

  13. Glenda says:

    Thanks so much for the tutorial Tim it does make sense to break those areas up and echo quilt them, I’d just never thought about it on a whole quilt like this. I learnt echo quilting from a Hawaiian lady and I find it very very relaxing and not boring, my trouble is I quilt at night time and around midnight I’m still saying just one more row LOL. I was sent your link last week and have so enjoyed seeing your mail come in each time and been able to learn from you. I still have difficulty in believing that you do all this by hand though. You are a inspiration to all of us hand quilters. Thanks again for your time in showing us how you did your fill. Cheers Glenda Australia.

    • timquilts says:

      Thanks Glenda
      I often am quilting late at night myself and saying “just one more row”! I guess quilting can be an adiction, but at least no harm is done ๐Ÿ˜‰ Thanks for visiting!!

      • dljolin says:

        Do you have a time of day you enjoy quilting more? Or find it’s better for you? I usually do much better early in the morning.
        Also do you watch TV, listen to music, watch movies while you quilt?

      • timquilts says:

        I quilt whenever I have time, any time of day or night….more often it is in the evening, and I watch TV and my computer at the same time…as I am doing right now

  14. Francie says:

    Oh WOW….after being away …it was lovely to come back with this post in the mailbox!!! Excellent instructions Tim, and another of your quilts for me to covet!!!!!

    • timquilts says:

      glad you like it!…this one is giving me lots of ideas for future quilts

      • Kristen says:

        Oh no, Francie is after another of your quilts! You’d better watch out for that woman — I’M the one who wants to steal them all. Francie, how far away from Lansing do you live? I’ll race you from New York.

      • Francie says:

        This is for Kristen….LOL…does this mean if anything happens to Tim you and I are going to duke it out?? hahahahaha Since you live closer to Tim….I’ll have to keep engine running… ๐Ÿ˜€

  15. Kristen says:

    Shaping up to be another lovely one, Tim.

  16. ahhhh I am so glad you showed that! I was wondering too!

  17. Ollie Sharper says:

    All I can say is wow…I want to be like you when I grow up!

  18. Victoria says:

    I too, was wondering how you did the stippling. Itโ€™s time to do another video of you in action. I just canโ€™t imagine how fast your hands must move to cover so much area on a daily basis. Lovely! Lovely! Lovely!

  19. Jan jan says:

    I also have been trying to work out how you managed the fill in never thinking of sectioning of areas as you do…thanks for sharing this …your work is inspirational

  20. irene vernon says:

    I,ve never understood how these spaces were filled in by hand quilting and now you,ve shown us. Thanks such a lot.
    By the way Tim which No. Pearl did you use?

  21. irene vernon says:

    oops that should have read Perle thread

  22. Bertha Mallard says:

    I;m glad someone finally asked this question. I really appreciate your explanation of how you do the fill-in work on your quilts.

  23. Carla says:

    Teddy is looking so cute! Looking forward to how your going to quilt your Christmas quilt this year!

  24. Kristen says:

    That’s right, Francie, when Tim decides he just tired of having all those fabulous quilts around and throws them in the air, it’s going to be me and your wrestling them into our respective station wagons. There’s probably enough for the both of us, but I have my favorites…

  25. Jan Masenthin says:

    Wow. 321 is so beautiful. I love the idea of quilting with perle cotton. I did a knife edge on a hexagon quilt but there were so many zigzags I used scissors and trimmed a few inches ahead of the stitching. I will post it on Hand Quilting when I have time to get a good picture. It can’t compare with 321 but I’ll keep practicing. Thanks for the inspiration.


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