The Free Motion Quilting Project: Super Quick Quilt

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Super Quick Quilt

Okay, I don't want to be responsible for anyone quilting themselves to death in the last five days before Christmas, but I do want to share this super easy quilt design that really can, literally, be pieced in a day and quilted in another day.

Here's my Super Quick Quilt:

free motion quilting | Leah DayThis quilt was pieced using 10" pre-cut blocks of "Delft Remix" fabric by Susan K. Stamilio. Click Here for the super quick instructions.

So first off, why is this quilt Super Quick?

This quilt adheres to the very reasonable formula that:

Big Blocks + Big Sashing + Big Borders = BIG, FAST QUILT!

The reason why some quilts take so long to piece? The pieces you're working with are too small!

If I'm piecing something for a gift or a bed quilt, my personal rule of thumb is to never, EVER work with any pieces smaller than 2 1/2".

You get smaller than that and you're wasting time!

Now, I know I'm going to have every paper piecer in the country ready to burn me at the stake, but keep in mind - I said gift and bed quilts.

If you want to piece together little snippets of fabric to make a super amazing show quilt, go for it! Personally, I'd rather focus on the quilting, but everyone is different and there's not right way or wrong way to do anything in this hobby!

In truth, even this quilt could have been simplified. By expanding the sashing to double it's width (7 1/2"), I could have eliminated the need for a border fabric.

This wouldn't have saved any money on fabric, but it would have saved time from having to cut out another set of strips for the border.

I also skimped a bit on the fabric and was working with only 2 yards for the sashing and borders. For the record, yes, the quilt can still be made with less fabric, but you will spend more time slicing and piecing in order to make every little scrap count.

Make sure to check by tomorrow. This was just the piecing design, which can definitely be completed all in one day.

Tomorrow I'll share my super quick quilting method to get this quilt finished and on the bed in 1 day. You'd be surprised just how many ways there are to do this!

Let's go Quilt!

Leah Day


  1. I can't tell how big the quilt top is? My brain is tired from my own Christmas sewing, and I don't feel up to doing the math. :)

  2. Well it may be simple, but that makes it beautiful-really showcases the pretty fabrics! Good job!

  3. Hi Leah S - Sorry about that! The finished size should be around 77" wide by 89" long.

    Of course, if you wanted it to finish slightly larger or smaller, simply vary the border size.

    I did the 7 1/2 inch border because I was precisely cutting the fabric so that the pattern was consistent through the strips.

    Make sure you don't do something that precise if you want to finish your top quickly!

    Let's go quilt!

    Leah Day

  4. I am new to quilting. I just started in late Sept with a class at a nearby shop. It's called Wash Tub Scrappy. Definitely was not the best choice for a beginners project, very small pieces. I haven't made very much progress on it due to the time of year I started it. I even got a new machine for my Christmas gift! Anyway, I wish I had started with something like this. As soon as the holiday's are over I plan to dive back in to quilting and I will try this one for sure. Thanks for sharing! Your blog is wonderful!

  5. Leah, your Super Quick Quilt is beautiful! It so striking in the green. I'm looking forward to seeing how you chose to quilt it.

  6. Oh my, that's a quick and very nice one! I don't think I make it for Christmas but maybe later in the new year. Thanks for sharing!

  7. I am a knitter that is getting sucked into the world of quilting at an alarming rate. I am so intrigued by free motion quilting and I've been stalking your blog daily to see what you have posted. I totally agree that the quilting part, in particular the free motion, is so fascinating. I haven't tried it yet but I plan to very soon. Thanks for the great tutorials!

  8. Hi Leah!

    I love your quilt. I bought some layer cakes and wanted to use them to make a king sized quilt for our bed, but did not want anything complicated.

    3 questions

    1. You wash all of your fabric. How did you wash the layer cakes without winding up with a wade of fabric?

    2. You cut the layer cakes to 9.5" I guess to get ride of the pinked edges and to square up. Exactly how did you do this?

    3. Did you use a special ruler?



  9. Hi Pat - Let me see if I can answer your questions all at once here:

    1. I do wash ALL of my regular fabric, but I DO NOT wash the layer cakes because I don't want to potentially ruin them.

    I THINK they would be okay in the wash, but I'm not willing to gamble $30 just to try it out.

    So long as the fabrics you're using don't contain very much red or dark blue, you'll probably be okay. Red and blue dyes bleed the worst.

    When I do go to wash this quilt for the first time, I will definitely throw in 2-3 dye grabbers. Check out your laundry section on the top shelf for one of these. They work really well!

    2. I do cut them down to get rid of the pinked edges. I really wish manufacturers wouldn't do that, but cutting it off squares up the block properly and gets it ready for accurate piecing.

    3. I just use a regular 12.5 inch ruler. Line it up with the grain and square one side, rotate, square another side so you have a perfect 90 degree angle, then rotate and square the other 2 sides in one go.

    I found with a brand new blade I could cut through 5 layers at a time still very accurately. This helps to save some time!

    I hope that answers everything!

    Let's go quilt,

    Leah Day

  10. Love the quilt top. Looking forward to seeing how you finish it.

  11. I love this quilt. I've been collecting red fabric for a long time because it is my favorite color and I really want to use them all in one quilt. This might be a good route! Thanks for the idea!!

    Merry Christmas!!


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