Published in The Baldwin City Community News
February 3, 2022
This week I’m taking the opportunity to begin a series sharing some quilting lingo and tips. Let’s start out with some of the most commonly used acronyms used in the quilting world. We’ll look at some of these more in depth in coming weeks.
BOM—Block of the Month. A program you sign up for and get the fabric and patterns one block at a time typically over the period of a year.
DSM—Domestic Sewing Machine. Any brand sewing machine that one uses for the purpose of sewing fabric together into blocks or in making garments.
EPP—English Paper Piecing. A hand sewing technique that utilizes paper templates to create shapes that are sewn together.
FMQ—Free Motion Quilting. The quilting process of sewing the three layers of a quilt—top, batting, and backing—together as a finished product.
FPP—Foundation Paper Piecing. A technique of sewing fabric onto a paper foundation by machine; typically used for more complicated or irregular designs.
FQ—Fat Quarter. A fat quarter is 18”x22” or a half yard by half width of fabric. Larger pieces can be cut from a fat quarter than a normal quarter yard cut that is only 9” wide by full width of fabric.
HST—Half Square Triangle. Most quilt blocks are made up of a variety of units made up of squares, rectangles, and triangles. A half square triangle is two triangles of different colors sewn together into a square.
LAQ—Long Arm Quilter. A long arm quilter is a quilter with a machine that is dedicated to the quilting process only that is mounted on a frame with rollers to hold the layers in place as they are stitched together. The machine itself is moved over the quilt layers by hand or by computer. Many quilters pay a long arm quilter to quilt their quilt layers together for them.
LOF—Length of Fabric. This refers to the length of fabric along the finished selvedge, also referred to as length of grain. Full bolts of fabric are typically 15 yards, although some are only 10 yards.
QAYG—Quilt as You Go. Some patterns are designed to be worked on in sections with the block, batting, and backing already assembled and sewn to the next block or row of already layered sections. Quilt as You Go projects can more easily be made on domestic sewing machines and don’t require long arm quilting.
QST—Quarter Square Triangle. Similar to the HST only this square is made up of four triangles of different fabrics.
SID—Stitch in the Ditch. For some quilters, they may not have the budget to pay a long arm quilter to finish their quilts. In this case, the quilter may stitch their three layers together on their domestic sewing machine. By stitching right along the seam lines, they are stitching in the ditch and securing the seams, so they won’t come apart with wear and use.
UFO—Unfinished Object. Quilters often have several projects going at the same time. If any become abandoned for any length of time they are referred to as UFOs.
WIP—Work in Progress. Quilt projects that are actively in progress towards becoming a finished quilt.
WOF—Width of Fabric. Width of Fabric refers to the width of fabric from selvedge to selvedge rather than length of grain or the length of the piece cut. Quilt patterns often refer to cutting strips WOF to be sewn together and/or sub-cut into smaller units.
Hopefully you won’t feel like your quilting friends are speaking a secret language when they start throwing out these acronyms!