Stitch and Split Friendship Quilt Tutorial

Friendship QuiltA few months ago I began a project with some friends of mine. We formed a group to learn new quilting and sewing techniques.

It was my month to teach and this is the project I wanted to try. It was inspired by a project on the cover of a book called “Stitch and Split Applique” by Jayme Crow. This is how we decided it would work. 4 friends make the same number of blocks they would like to end up with. Then they are cut into 4ths, divided equally among each other and put back together into a scrappy looking quilt, though it could all be made by one person, but then, where is the fun in that?

It was really fun to do and I am glad I finally got a chance to make this one. Finished size is approx. 66″ x 57″. Perfect for cuddling up with while reading a good book.

I didn’t use the pattern from the book, it was a bit too messy for my taste, so I made my own flower pattern, though you could use just about any shape you like, in concentric sizes.

Step 1- Cut 30 11″ blocks from a background fabric of your choice. We decided that we would all use a white fabric, and interestingly enough, we each chose the same one.

Step2- Cut 3o large flowers of one color, 30 medium of another color, and 30 small of another color.

Step 3- fold the background squares and each of the 3 sizes of flowers into quarters and press the outer edges of them to make crease marks for positioning.

Step 4- using the creases as a guide, layer the flowers in order from largest to smallest. Pin in place and stitch around the edges using 1/4″ or so seam allowance. This is a raw-edge applique so there is no need to finish the edges.
Step 5- Press all of the blocks flat and cut them into quarters. Divide them into equal piles to share with your friends.

When you get everyone’s split quarters, then the fun begins!

Step 6- Snip the inside corners of each square, leaving only the top fabric. This reduces the amount of fabric in the center seam, otherwise, there would be 16 layers of fabric in the very center!

All done cutting.

Step 10- Begin to assemble each block by laying a bottom piece of fabric, right side down, then center a piece of cotton batting on next.

Step 11- Place a quilt block on top with the right side facing up. Pin in place around the outer flower.

Step 12- Stitch around the outer flower, quilting through all the layers.

Step 13- With a fabric marker, draw a line from the edge of the flower diagonally to each outer corner. Quilt this line as well to secure the batting.

Step 14- Layout all of your finished quilt blocks on a large surface, re-arranging them until they are laid out to your liking. I made mine 6 down by 5 across.
Step 15- Pin them with the wrong sides together and sew with a 3/8″ seam allowance. I really had a hard time not sewing them right sides together, I kept just naturally pinning them the opposite way than I wanted. After following the “Right Sides Together” rule for years, it’s a tough one to break.

Step 16- Press all seams open to show background fabric.

This is how my quilt is looking so far. You can see the quilting on the back of the fabric. Yay! It’s looking so cute already!

Step 17- Here, I added a 4″ border all around the edge of the quilt in the same manner as the quilt blocks, by cutting the fabric for the top borders and the fabric for the backside the same size. Then cut the cotton batting 3/8″ smaller all around. Sandwich the batting between the top and bottom fabrics and sew onto the sides and top and bottom of the quilt with wrong sides together. Press seams open.
Step 18- finish the edges of your quilt. Originally I had planned to make quilt binding but ended up not liking the fabric I had purchased. Well, I was running out of time and decide to simply fold over the edge of my quilt and zig zag it down. I was actually very pleased with the end result.

Here is my finished quilt! I finished it just in time (literally) to give to my best friend just before she moved away to another state. A friendship quilt, made by friends and given to one. Now I need to make one for myself to keep.

As it is used and washed, the edges will fray and become soft and even more cuddly and loveable. enjoy!

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