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How to Make a Patchwork Quilt

In this “How to” style guide we provide a complete guide of how to make a patchwork quilt. Read on to learn this precious art and make these decorative quilts in your own home or for family and friends.

What is a patchwork quilt?

Patchwork quiltA patchwork quilt is a type of quilt for which the top layer consists of a series of fabric patches which are sewn together into a pattern to form a design. In times gone by the intention was to use up left over fabric scraps, but now patchwork quilts are very popular and decorative in their own right.

 

Items needed

The following items will be needed to make a patchwork quilt:

  • A selection of fabrics
  • Wadding / Batting – this is the filling to be used inside the quilt
  • Cutting mat
  • Patchwork quilt pattern – design your own or find a pattern online or through a book
  • Pins and safety pins
  • Rotary cutter
  • Scissors – these need to be sharp
  • Sewing machine or needle and thread
  • Transparent imperial ruler

1)    Choose a patchwork quilt pattern

The first part of the patchwork quilt design process is to select a patchwork quilt pattern. Available options include designing your own pattern or selecting a pattern online or from a book. There are a wealth of options available!

2)    Prepare the fabric

Next wash and iron the fabric to be to prepare it for use.

3)    Cut the fabric into square shapes

Cut the fabric into square shapes typically between 6 and 12 inches in size.

Be sure to allow extra material for seaming, about quarter of an inch is usually sufficient.

4)    Arrange square shapes into a pattern

Next arrange the square shapes into a pattern on the floor

5)    Stitch shapes together

Stitch the square shapes together to initially join two squares together, but then join groups of patches together to form the eventual quilt.

6)    Iron the entire top level surface of the quilt

Iron the top of the quilt to ensure it is smooth and that all the sewing seams are flattened out.

7)    Add the quilt backing

Patchwork quilt on bedStretch out a piece of fabric which covers the entire length of the patchwork design.

On top of the fabric add a layer of wadding; this is the filling for the quilt.

A great example of a patchwork quilt

Image Source: https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/564x/f9/ab/49/f9ab494aa1e365f33f3dd511ff7a8724.jpg

8)    Sew the three layers together (Quilting)

On top of the wadding add the patchwork itself and secure with curved safety pins or tack removing any wrinkles on the fabric backing and patchwork front.

Now sew the three layers together:

  • Ensure the colour of the thread used is compatible with the pattern
  • Start in the center of the patchwork and sew outwards making sure there are no wrinkles.
  • Sew through all three layers (fabric backing, wadding and patchwork) on the edges of blocks to join all three layers together

9)    Add the binding

It’s now time to add the binding. This runs along the edge of all four sides of the patchwork quilt and protects the edges/seams and also adds to the overall decoration:

  • Cut four different pieces of fabric as per the pattern
  • The fabric is usually about 12CM in width (but check the pattern) and will be the same as the length of the patchwork plus 25MM spare
  • Iron the fabric to make sure it is entirely smooth
  • Next fold the entire strip lengthways in half
  • Now pin one side of the strip along the top of the patchwork and pin the other side to the fabric backing.
  • Next sew the strips into place along the entire length of the fabric
  • Repeat the pinning and sewing process for the other three sides of the quilt and then the entire patchwork quilt is finished

Contacting Poppy Patch

If you need help with any aspect of your patchwork quilt let us know here at Poppy Patch, we’d be delighted to help! We can supply materials, patterns and general supplies; we also run a range of regular workshops which can be helpful too. Call us on 01933 227973 to commence discussions or place an order.

 

Image Credits: Lesley-Anne Doveston and Mishy Whettleton

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