Friday, February 11, 2011

Fusible Grid Quilting Tutorial


 The mini quilt is finished.  It's big brother is half way there, but I'm ready to show you how I did it, and how you can, too!

Now, this is a long post with lots of pictures, so if you want to stop reading now, I totally understand.  Otherwise, continue on.

The fabric: Top: Kona Cotton 1999 (joanns?)
Bali Circles - Keepsake Quilting
Brown Leaf Batik - Hobby Lobby
Orange swirls Bali - Keepsake Quilting
Purple Bali - Keepsake Quilting

 Cut out lots of 1" squares.  The mini version is 13 x 13 = 169 squares.

 Now get yourself some Grided Fusible Interfacing!  This piece is from a place called Quiltsmart.  They sell by the panel, and have multiple sizes.  You can get some by Pellon at your regular fabric store - cheaper, but only 1" size.  Pellon does however make a version that is 'on point'.  I will be using that in a future quilt.

 You will need to put your interfacing on something that can be ironed on.  Once you get those squares down, you don't want to be moving things around.  I used a double folded towel on my table.

 Start placing those squares in your desired pattern.
 Keep going!  At this point it doesn't have to be perfect.
 Phew, that's a lot of squares.
I use a Clover Mini Iron to iron my squares in place.  You could use your regular iron, just be super careful of your fingers, and not moving those squares!
 I start in the upper left corner of the piece.  Align the fabric square with the bottom and right sides of the grid.
 Lightly iron in place.
 Continue on.  The squares will probably over lap just a bit, like scales.  Unless you cut perfectly.  I didn't.
 Work your way down and across, ironing in place.  Stand back once in a while to make sure you are staying true to your pattern.  You can peel them off if necessary, but it's best to not have to.
 All ironed down.
 Now you are ready to start sewing.

Pick a side to start on.  Fold along the first grid line - right sides together.  I like to pin.  Pins give me a feeling of control.  If you want to fold and sew along the way, go for it.  It would probably be faster!  Sew a 1/4" seam.  Consistency is the key here.  A perfect 1/4" seam isn't crucial, as long as all your seams are the same size.  The most important thing here is straight lines.

Continue folding and sewing until you have all the seams done in one direction.  I would recommend alternating which side is 'top'.  When we sew, there is a tendency to 'pull' in one direction.  If you do that over may strips, you will end up with a crooked piece.  Alternating directions can help keep things lined up.
 This is what the back side will look like.
 Here is the front side after I ironed it out.  Has a sort of bargello effect.

  This part is going to be tedious, but it will help eliminate bulk.  You need to snip at each intersection up to the sewn seam.

That way, when you start sewing the other direction, the seams will nest together.
This picture is of the bigger quilt.  I neglected to do this on the little one.  It makes a big difference.
 When you're done sewing all the seams it might look something like this.  Unless you were good and ironed after every one.
 Nice and ironed out.
What the back should look like (again, the bigger version)

From here on out, its like finishing any other quilt.
  A little squaring up.
 Cut out and apply some borders.  I was a little concerned about the borders not being interfaced, and the rest having it, but it worked out OK.
Layer your quilt sandwich, baste, quilt and bind.
Everyone keeps telling me it's perfect for a hot pad/ trivet.  I am slightly offended by that - I mean come on, 169 pieces!  I don't want spaghetti sauce on it!

Edited: You can now see the other 1" quilt HERE.


Unknown said...

I'm with you.. NO on the hot pad! REALLY? have they no idea how much time it takes to do it? I DO! Lovely and now I'll not feel so intimidated to do the one I have waiting in my stash. - Good job Rach.

Doris Sturm said...

Wow, I'm impressed - what a lot of work and patience goes into making this piece...all those small pieces sewn together - and I agree - hot pad? I don't think so!!!

I don't even want to crochet a rug thinking all my hard work and people are going to put their dirty shoes on it? Not in my life time!

Mindy said...

WOW! Incredible. =)

glor said...

How beautiful and how gracious and generous of you to put together this tutorial. Thank you.

Carol E Wyer said...

You must have oodles of patience Rachel. I read all the way through and took in all your instructions then decided Nuclear Fusion would be an easier subject for are very gifted (as I've said before). This is a lovely quilt and good luck with its big brother.
I've got behind on my blog reading so I'm off to explore some of your more recent posts that I missed. For anyone else reading this comment I want you all to know that Rachel is not only talented but incredibly generous too :)

Anonymous said...

cool! :-D

Unknown said...

Oh my goodness! I can't even find words. This is awesome!!! I can't imagine trying to tackle this but it's SOOOOOOOOO beautiful I may have to try!!!

Stephani said...

Wow, that attests to a lot of patience and skill. :) Thanks for sharing, your pictures helped me figure out exactly what you did. I don't think I'll be doing something that small in the near future though! Nice work!

Naturally Me Creations said...

what a cute little quilt! And...that's the cutest little iron i ever did see, hehehe! :D (never seen anything like it...not a wonder since i'm not into sewing) :)

Marianne said...

Your tutorial is great. I have saved it for future reference if I ever find the time to try a project like this. The quilt is so neat.
Thank you for sharing.

Megan said...

wow. I've never seen anything like that before. Neat!


Pam said...

Thanks for all the pictures and the great tutorial. I've been playing around a little with quilting and want to learn more. this is a good start for me.

Unknown said...

Your work is wonderful. I made one the same way for a porcelain doll. I named mine Gale's tiny quilt. If you enjoyed doing it you can do the same thing with a cross stitch pattern, look up Evelyn Burns. Great job again

RoseMary Baty-Willcox said...

They do come in other sizes and that would help with not being over welmed.

bETTY wATERS said...

I love this tutorial. It has to be the best one I have ever read. I would have never considered making anything with blocks this small until reading this tute. I can't wait until tonight so I can go through my scraps and start selecting fabric for some awesome potholders. Thanks a million as you have just given me the means to really impress my friends which happens to be something I am rarely able to do. LOL

Unknown said...

I have a pattern that calls for 2 3/8 inch squares. How would you cut that and put it on the fusible grid

Unknown said...

I it is ok that the 1/2" finished squares have thick backing? I tried to eliminate some additional bulk but do to the square sizes, I could not. . Guess don't really need batting in these blocks really?