How To: Design quilts

Design quilts

Sure, buying a quilt is fun, but making your own is much cooler! Learn how to design and sew your own quilt by watching this informative video.

With simple sewing skills and a little imagination you can design a quilt that is both beautiful and functional.

Step 1: Choose a size

Choose a size for your quilt project. A wall hanging can be any size, but bed quilts should measure close to standard sizes.

Step 2: Choose a pattern

Choose a pattern for your quilt. Most projects are built of blocks, a patchwork pattern which is repeated in rows and columns.

TIP: Beginners should stick with simple blocks that involve squares and rectangles.

Step 3: Calculate number of blocks and add borders or sashing

Calculate how many rows and columns of blocks you need for your size quilt. Add sashing – strips of fabric between blocks, or borders – strips of fabric on the edges of the joined blocks.

TIP: Use a software program to experiment with different block sizes and layouts.

Step 4: Choose your colors and fabrics

Choose the colors and fabrics you want in your quilt.

Step 5: Lay out the quilt blocks

Lay out your quilt blocks in rows after piecing them together. Move blocks around to see which fit together best.

Step 6: Choose your quilting pattern

Choose a pattern for quilting once you have the top assembled and basted with batting and backing. Stitch "in the ditch" of your seams, or stitch different shapes, to make your quilt unique.

Did you know? Faith Ringgold has a "story quilt" on permanent exhibition at New York's Guggenheim Museum and her painted quilts have won several awards for illustration.

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