Thursday, December 31, 2015

Quick denim quilt tutorial, part 1

Cut yourself a bunch of squares out of recycled denim. We used six 4" squares for the tutorial to give you the basics. I recommend at least 6" squares for a lap or full sized quilt. Precise cutting is the key to everything. You'll be happy later if you take time to do this part right.

Put one square right side up.

Place a second square right side down on top of the square above.

Using your presser foot to measure seam allowance as shown in the picture, stitch these two together. At the beginning and the end, do a forward and reverse stitch or two to secure the line of stitching.

Place the two squares right side up.

Place one square right side down on the end of the first set of sewn squares.

Stitch this square down as above, securing with a forward and reverse stitch on the ends. 

This is what it looks like when turned over. Use as many squares as you like to make a row. 

You remember your iron, right? You're about to use it.

Turn your row right side down. 

Press the seams open with a hot iron. 

When you've done all the seams, turn the row right side up and iron from the top to give it an extra oomph to keep the seams open. Repeat with all rows. 

Place an ironed row right side up.

Place a second row right side down on the first row.

Match the seams. Try to match the seam and not the seam allowance. 

Pin on the left side of the seam to hold. Repeat with all squares in the row. Don't worry if there's a little give in the squares. 

Start at one end (forward and reverse) and stitch the two rows together until you get to the seam/pin. You can stretch the squares a skosh with your hands if there was a little give. The goal is to not have pinches of fabric, especially at the seams. If you cut them precisely, you should be fine. 

Take the pin out and hold the seam in place by hand. Go very slowly here. The fabric is thick. 

Stitch the seam intersection together...

Go forward, backward, and forward again to double reinforce the seam joint.

Seam done. Repeat as often as necessary with rows. you can do two rows, then two rows, then two rows, etc. to make handling easier, then stitch the sections of two rows together. 

Take this to the ironing board and place it right side down.

Press the new seam open with high heat, paying attention to the intersections of seams. Go slowly. It pays to do it right the first time. 

Here is the wrong side pressed. 

Turn it over and press again. 

Your quilt top is now made. 

How to add backing and tie the quilt will be in part 2 of the tutorial. Now, go make a quilt!