Using a Kit to Design Your Own Quilt

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Crystal Systems Quilt by The Artist’s House for Robert Kaufman

There’s no doubt about it, quilt kits are handy. Not only is all of the fabric conveniently portioned, but the pattern and fabric are bundled together in one convenient package.

Quilt kits come in all shapes, sizes, and styles. There are kits where you cut your own fabric and ones that use precuts including fat quarters, charm squares, jelly rolls, and even half square triangles. You can use them to make a baby quilt, a throw, or a king size comforter. Plus, kits can feature contemporary quilt patterns and fabrics or traditional quilt patterns with vintage fabric designs.

I know what you’re thinking, “Quilt kits are for beginners.” Even though many a beginner has learned how to make a quilt by using a pre-packaged kit, they aren’t just for the novice; quilt kits are for every quilter.

Hear me out on this.

There’s no doubt about it, quilt kits save time. When I have to choose my own fabric for a project, I spend entirely too long at the fabric store agonizing over which fabrics will look best together. Once I’ve made my purchase, exactly to the specification of the pattern (or to my modifications of the pattern), I schlep everything back home to iron and cut. After I’ve made my cuts I can finally start piecing, which is my favorite part of the process.

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Variation of the Crystal Systems Quilt.

If you have a kit, you don’t have to spend hours in the fabric store choosing the best hue of blue, you can start cutting right away. Even better yet, if you choose a quilt kit with precuts you can skip the shopping and cutting altogether and jump right into the piecing.

Quilt kits are also a great way to try a new technique. So you want to learn appliqué or improve your existing skills; there are kits for that. You think English paper piecing might be the best way to get some sewing in on those days you’re on the go; there are kits for that, too. You’ve fallen in love with triangle quilts but aren’t sure how or where to start; there are kits for half-square triangles, paper-pieced triangles, flying-geese, and more.

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A simple turn of the blocks will result in this second variation of the quilt.

You don’t have to follow the pattern or use all of the fabric. When you buy a quilt kit you get to exercise creativity within boundaries. You can challenge yourself to design your own quilt using the contents of the kit. This is my favorite part; sometimes I follow the pattern to the “T” and other times I don’t. If I’m not jibing with one of the fabrics in the kit, then I replace it with something else. If the kit features only black and white charm squares, I find myself brainstorming what colors I can introduce to change the feeling of the quilt and to make a more dynamic composition.

My all-time favorite quilt kit that I think best utilizes creativity within boundaries is back in the Interweave Store for a limited time. There is no denying the Crystal Systems quilt is gorgeous. What’s even better: this kit includes four HST packs of Kona® Cotton Solids by Robert Kaufman Fabric in neutral, pastel, dusty, and bright. That means there are 320 HSTs you can use to create a unique quilt design. Around this blog you’ll see a few ideas I came up with over the weekend using only half of the bright pack and half of the dusty pack. As you can see the half-square triangle is such a diverse quilt block, the options are limitless.

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Give those blocks another turn for this third variation of the quilt.

If the packs of HSTs weren’t enough, you’ll also get white Kona Cotton fabric that you can use as backing or even for your quilt top. Plus, you’ll get a copy of Amy Ellis’ Accurate Machine Piecing DVD to and the Fall 2015 issue of Modern Patchwork magazine. Order your Crystal System Quilt Bonus Bundle before they’re gone or peruse our sister brand Craft of Quilting to check out more contemporary quilt kits.

Happy Quilting!

Brenna's Signature

P.S. If you’re more of a visual learner, be sure to check out half-square triangle video tutorials on QNNtv.com.

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Quilt Designs, Quilting Daily Blog

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