The sun is shining, the weather is sweet… summer is here! This small, basic patchwork quilt is the perfect size for picnics in the park, taking along to a festival, wrapping around your shoulders as you sit around the campfire, or even snuggling under on the sofa.
This project is suitable for beginners and can easily be adapted – add an extra row of squares on each side to make it a double bed sized quilt, or a row less on each side makes a great baby quilt. These quilts also make wonderful quick & easy handmade gifts.
You Will Need:
* Tokyo Textiles Fabric Set Bセット which includes 12 fat quarters and one panel of beautiful Japanese cotton fabric. (Note: Cotton fabrics should be pre-washed to prevent shrinking once the quilt is made).
* 143cm x 143cm piece of cotton fabric to back the quilt (Note: I added a border to each side of my backing fabric as it was only 137 cm wide)
* 143cm x 143cm polyester wadding to fill the quilt (Note: I joined two pieces of wadding as it was only 137 cm wide)
* 6 metres of wide cotton binding
* Your sewing machine, iron, long quilting pins, tracing paper, scissors & neutral coloured thread
Step 1: Preparing your fabric pieces
Cut four 23cm x 23cm squares from each of your twelve fat quarters and one from your fabric panel. I made a 23cm x 23cm template from tracing paper and pinned it to my fabric, cutting the squares out one by one. If you have a cutting mat, ruler and rotary cutter you can use those to cut your squares out instead. You will end up with 49 squares in total.
Once you have cut out all of your squares, lay them out in 7 rows of 7. Spend some time re-arranging the different fabrics until you are pleased with your design. A double bed or a clean floor is a great place to do this.
Step 2: Creating your quilt top
Once you have decided on a layout, pick up one row of squares at a time and one by one pin them together and stitch with a 1.5cm seam allowance. Make sure your seam allowances are as accurate as possible so that your squares will line up neatly.
You will end up with 7 rows of squares.
Next, press your seam allowances flat. On the first row, press all seam allowances upwards. On the second row, press all seam allowances downwards. Alternate between pressing up and down on all seven rows.
When you look at the rows side by side, the seam allowances will face in different directions, like so.
Next, pin the rows together one by one and stitch.
Your seams will ‘nest’ together at the corners because they have been pressed in different directions. This helps to cut down on bulk.
Press all seam allowances open.
Congratulations, you’ve completed the top of your quilt! Stand back and admire.
Step 3: Constructing your quilt
Creat a ‘quilt sandwich’ by laying your backing fabric, polyester wadding and quilt top on top of each other. Line them up carefully and smooth out any creases.
Using long quilt pins, carefully pin around each and every square through the entire thickness (top, wadding and backing). Smooth out any creases as you go.
Now you are ready to quilt your blanket! There are many, many ways to do this. Some people prefer to quilt by hand, others quilt in decorative patterns. I chose the simplest method I know, simply machine stitch through the all layers in the ‘ditch’ of each seam, so that every seam is stitched. Start from one of the middle rows and work your way outwards.
Once you have quilted your blanket, trim any excess wadding and backing away so that all edges are even.
Step 4: Binding your quilt
Once again, there are many many ways to bind a quilt. I have chosen a very basic method. You can buy ready made binding, or you can make it yourself by cutting and ironing long strips of fabric.
Cut a pieces of binding the length of one side of your quilt. Carefully pin the binding to the edge of the quilt so that it encases all the raw edges. Stitch along the binding, being careful to keep all layers enclosed in the binding as you go. Repeat this step on the opposite side of the quilt.
Next, cut a piece of binding roughly 6 cm longer than the edge of your quilt. Fold under 3cm at the end and pin to the edge of your quilt, enclosing all raw edges, including the edge of the binding on the other edge. Stitch along this edge. At the end of the edge, fold under the last 3cm of the binding to finish the corner off neatly. Repeat this step on the final side of the quilt. By hand, slip stitch the open ends of the binding closed at each corner.
Ta da!Your quilt is complete! Now pack your picnic basket, head to the park and enjoy the sunshine in style!
I hope this tutorial is clear and easy to follow, as always feedback is appreciated and I am happy to help if you have any questions. I’d love to see a photo of your finished project! Check out the Tokyo Textiles shop for lots of gorgeous Japanese fabrics which would be perfect for this project.