The Free Motion Quilting Project: Basic Applique Quilt

Monday, August 16, 2010

Basic Applique Quilt

I interrupt our usual program to bring you:

"How Do I Quilt This?!"

This is a new video series on all the different ways you can use the free motion quilting filler designs from this blog on your quilts!

free motion quilting | Leah DayI decided this would be a terrific way of teaching you all how to use the 209 filler designs we've learned so far, and the many ways quilting can impact your overall quilt design.

Now before we start actually quilting, I'd like to bring you up to speed about the quilt tops I'm putting together for this series.

In the videos, I will feature 4 relatively simple applique quilts that I've put together using the AccuQuilt Go! fabric cutter.

Here's the first video on how to prepare your fabric, fuse, and cut your shapes:

Just in case you can't watch the video, the first step was to create the background of the quilt. I actually pieced the blocks, sashing, and borders before fusing any appliques to the surface.

I did this because it's actually much easier to get exact placement of each shape on a completed quilt rather than on individual blocks.

So here are the directions on piecing this simple quilt top:


1/4 yard black fabric for blocks
1/3 yard blue fabric for sashing
1 yard black fabric for border


- 4 - 9.5" squares from Black Fabric for Blocks

- 4 - 6" strips from Black Fabric for border

Sashing - 2 - 2.5" x 9.5" strips, 3 - 2.5" x 22" strips, 4 - 2.5" full length strips


Piece blocks, sashing, and borders according to the diagram below:
free motion quilting | Leah DayFirst piece blocks to short sashing strips. Press seams open.

Next piece blocks to medium length sashing strips. Press seams open.

Next piece 2 full length strips to top and bottom. Press seams open and trim to square. Then attach 2 remaining full length sashing strips to both sides. Press seams open.

Attach border strip to top and bottom. Press seams open and trip to square. Piece remaining border strip to sides, press seams open and trim to square.

With your quilt top together, you can then start playing with your arrangement of applique shapes.

To fuse these shapes, I'm using Seam-A-Seam 2 Lite. I also use Wash Away Sheets as a stabilizer on the backs of the shapes I plan to satin stitch.

Now watch this video to see how I've laid out one of the applique quilts using very simple techniques and symmetry:

I think that just about covers the basics of the applique quilts I've created for this series. If you have any questions, please feel free to post in the comments below!

Let's go quilt!

Leah Day


  1. This is going to be an amazing series, Leah! That question - 'how do I quilt this??? - is probably the main cause of stress in my quilting hobby :) I'm making a table runner right now and am struggling with just this issue regarding quilting around the appliques! THANK YOU for sharing your knowledge and expertise!

  2. Yup - really looking forward to this too. I repeat this question ALOT!

  3. awesome! I always need help with where to use what design.

  4. Looking forward to the next installment...thanks for posting :)

  5. I am so looking forward to see how you determine which design to use where. I have an idea in mind for a quilt with lots of little places to do different free motion patterns, but would love to get inside your mind and see how you determine what pattern to use where. I have a conflicting analytical / free-spirited personality which means I like to go with the flow but need to know exactly how to do it! Can't wait for the next installment!


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