They say beauty is pain.
And maybe that's true in some circles.
But in the quilting world, that doesn't have to be true.
Just because a quilt is beginner friendly doesn't mean it can't also be beautiful.
Here are some of my personal favorites from around the internet.
Did I mention the patterns are available for $0.00?
That's right! FREE Hundred Dollars (as my kids would say)
That makes them even better!
1. Strip quilts by Ashley at filminthefridge.com
Strippy quilts are quick and easy. And they are great beginner quilts because you get a lot of practice sewing a proper 1/4" seam. If your seam wobbles a bit it won't be a deal breaker in the end. Strippy quilts are very forgiving.Keep them under the width of your backing fabric for an easy finish to a baby size quilt.
2. Framework by Corey Yoder at connectingthreads.com
If you aren't familiar with Connecting Threads, let me introduce you. They have beautiful fabrics that are wonderful quality at excellent prices. In addition to that, they have an entire section of FREE patterns that are sewn up in their own fabric. So you never have to ask yourself, "I love this fabric, but what would I make out of it?" They also have an amazing Clearance section.
Here's the downside: they don't reprint. Once a fabric is gone, it's gone for good. So if you really love something, get it now.
3. Jane's Ladder by Allison Jenson of Woodbury Way at modabakeshop.com
A Layer Cake is a stack of 40 precut, 10" squares, usually with 20 - 40 different fabric prints.
4. The Sudoku Quilt by RaeLyn Boothe (Hey, that's me!) at SeamlessPiecing.com
You didn't think I'd make a list and not include my own pattern. Did you? I'm a believer that:
"If you don't blow your own horn, someone will use it for a spittoon."
This Sudoku Quilt came together really quickly with no tricky bits. (Well, there was that one thing I added for excitement, but you can read all about that in the tutorial.)
5. Easy Woven Quilt by Laura Ann Coia of Sew Very Easy on YouTube
Laura makes everything look "sew very easy". She's a good teacher and explains things clearly and completely, so you never have to wonder what she means. This Easy Woven Quilt actually looks woven. As a special bonus, it's Fat Quarter friendly.
A fat quarter is a precut fabric measuring 18x21 inches. It's half as long and twice as wide (fat) as a linear quarter yard which measures 9x42 inches.
Oh, and that tricky bit I used in the Sudoku Quilt? I learned it watching Laura's tutorial. It really is "sew very easy."
6. Antique Tile Block 15 ways by Julie Baird at generations-quilt-patterns.com
You won't believe the things this simple block can do! You'll have to see it to believe it. Even if you never intend to make this quilt (or use the software they used to make the samples in the tutorial) You should read this article and be inspired.
7. All Roads by Angela Walters at Bluprint.com (formerly known as Craftsy)
This clever quilt is made with 10" precut squares . It may not technically be a beginner quilt but it was pretty simple to make. Let's call it Confident Beginner. Particularly because it comes with an instruction video. Precut fabric and simple sewing makes this quilt a quick project. Just be sure your layer cake has two of each fabric, or just buy two layer cakes to be safe. Then you can make one for you ... and one for a friend. And while you are at Bluprint, check out all the other FREE or inexpensive patterns. Help support independent quilt designers.
8. Split Rail by Angela Walters at Midnight Quilt Show
I'm adding a second quilt by Angela because the other one may not be as beginner friendly as it could be. (Or some may think not.) You can buy this pattern on Bluprint (formerly Craftsy) or just watch the video. (Or Google search Split Rail Fence quilt and get a million tutorial choices. Maybe not a million, but a lot!) The pattern is pretty straightforward. You're just sewing 2 1/2 x 8 1/2 inch strips together in groups of 4 to make a bunch of 8 1/2" squares. Then you sew them together in rows. Easy.
Alternatively, (read as: the way I would do it) sew together the 4 - 2 1/2" x Width of fabric strips, then cut them into squares after they are sewn. You'd loose some of the random-ness but it would sew faster. And who doesn't like faster? Disclaimer: I've never actually made a Split Rail quilt. So my way is unproven.... Maybe you should go with Angela's way after all.
Here's a blast from the past tutorial. Missouri Star Quilt co. has come a long way!
9. Dresden Window Pane by Remona at thestitchingscientist.com
I'm planning to put Baby's initial in the center of the Dresden. Of course, she's 6 months old already. If I don't hurry and get it stitched I'll have to border it up to a twin size. :-\
10. Zig Zag Quilt by Amanda Jean at CrazyMomQuilts.com
Think Chevron quilts are an exercise in tedium? Think you have to spend days trimming triangles? NOPE! Amanda has tossed all that out the window and given us a friendlier way to get our Chevrons on! No triangles anywhere in sight. Gotta love a quilter who thinks outside the blocks.
11. Stick Shift by Amy Smart at diaryofaquilter.com
Amy's quilt designs are always super cute and don't require weeks to finish. I love that. This darling baby quilt uses Jolly Bars and a Charm pack to make. Translated that means fabric that is precut to measure 5 x 10 inches (Jolly Bars, exclusively available at Fat Quarter Shop) and 5 x 5 inch squares (aka charm squares). Each of the precuts come in packs of 40 pieces, which is usually about the right amount to make a baby quilt as Amy has done here.
You don't have to use precuts. It's ok to cut your own rectangles and squares. The beauty of buying them in precut bundles is that you get more variety in your fabric. It's not uncommon to have 40 different, coordinating fabrics in a bundle as shown in this quilt.
12. Step Ladder by Donna Jordan at JordanFabrics.com
This clever quilt uses only 1 Jelly roll (a precut bundle consisting of 40 - 2 1/2" x Width of Fabric strips) and a bit of yardage for the borders. Donna used Americana prints to make this inspiring Quilt of Valor.
I'm using pretty purples and greens from Violet Femme by Boundless Fabric for my Step into Spring Quilt. It's ready to go on the frames.
What simple quilt patterns do you love?
Do you have a "go to" when you need a quick project?
Please share in the comments below, or on Facebook, your favorite quick quilts.
I encourage you to choose one of these, or another simple quilt to sew up to celebrate National Craft Month.
Enjoy the rest of a Crafty week!
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