Week 4/2020: What’s on my design wall?

Finally making progress on this quilt top. It’s grown a bit since I showed it last and I added some additional fabrics. I should be able to finish piecing it this week.

As I started assembling I thought it was interesting to visualize how a quilt shrinks with each quarter inch seam that is sewn. I know that you lose half an inch each time and take it into account when I design a top but somehow it still manages to surprise me. Perhaps because the design process often takes quite some time and I get used to the size that it had unpieced?

January 21, 2020

Emmely Treffers

About Emmely

I am a sewing enthusiast from the Netherlands. I live in the Leiden area with my husband and two daughters and I am currently working as a senior researcher in molecular virology. With my quilting patterns and sewing blog I want to infect as many people as possible with my love for sewing.

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10 Comments

  1. katechiconi

    I know exactly what you mean about the surprise of size! I make a lot of quilts in the 60×72 inch format, and I’ve actually basted a rectangle of the finished size on my design wall so that I’m reminded of the final size when laying blocks out. The added complication is that because I do a lot of QAYG, the seam allowance is *included* in the finished size, buried in the sashing!

    Reply
    • Emmely

      I sometimes use pins to indicate the size I am aiming for, I also find that helpful. It’s also that the amount you lose changes with the size of the units you have. With large blocks it’s not always as obvious but with smaller units it can be quite dramatic, especially when they’re not really butted against eachother in the layout stage.
      I have never done QAYG but that does force you to think differently.

      Reply
  2. tierneycreates

    That piece is looking fantastic! I laughed when I read you noticed the shrinkage occurring on the piece as you stitched it together. The same thing happened to be when I made a half square triangle pillow – I was in shock how smaller and smaller my pillow top was getting as I pieced it all together 🙂

    Reply
    • Emmely

      Thank you! Did you have to add more units to make the pillow large enough?

      Reply
      • tierneycreates

        I did, whew, but I had to make more units to keep going!

        Reply
  3. magpiesue

    This phenomenon still surprises me too. 🙂

    Reply
  4. Vanessa

    The colors and arrangement are so pretty!

    Reply
    • Emmely

      Thank you! I spent a lot of time on the layout.

      Reply
  5. marissthequilter

    I am also always surprised by the shrinkage. And of course the more seams the more it shrinks!

    Reply
    • Emmely

      Yes, that probably doesn’t help, it’s never really the same amount that disappears.

      Reply

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