Tips and Tricks

A Complete Guide To Getting Started | Quilt Sizing and Fabric Calculator

Hello everyone! Welcome back to another blog here at Anita Goodesign! I hope you all are having a fantastic summer so far. As we close out the month of July, I’m super excited to announce that one of our lovely customers, and All Access Member, reached out through our blog email with a special request! Yes, that’s right! If you are new to our blog page, first off, welcome! I hope you decide to stay around and enjoy all of the fun and helpful content we have to offer. Second, if you have any suggestions on topics you would like to learn more about, you can email me at blog@anita-goodesign.com

Whether you are new to the sewing machine or an expert behind this amazing craft, you know how challenging it can be to begin any embroidery or quilting project. Sometimes the hardest part is getting started!

Luckily, Anita Goodesign offers several guides to steer you in the right direction. The good news is, if you have purchased a collection from us, you already have these wonderful documents! When downloading your collections from your library, you may have noticed a PDF called “Anita’s Guide – READ ME.” This handy PDF comes with every purchase and it supplies you with all the information on how to select your colors, find the right number of blocks, how to download your items, and it also contains a fabric chart!



Now that you know how to find the “Anita’s Guide”, let’s walk through the process of starting a project, step by step!

Step 1: Choose a Collection 

To begin, let’s choose a collection to work with. Once you have your ideal collection in mind, you will then need to decide what type of sewing project you are working with. Is it project based? Strictly embroidery? Are you designing a quilt for a wall hanging or a bedroom?

If you choose to make one of our awesome projects, you will find all the step-by-step pictures and materials listed throughout your digital PDF! We break everything down for you. All the pictures, notions, and necessary fabrics-including sizes-are all located in your tutorial!

If you choose to make a quilt, we offer an entire size guide located in your “Anita’s Guide – READ ME PDF”! You will find this on page 36. I’ll place it here for a reference.

Step 2: Finding Your Number of Quilt Blocks

Once you have your quilting collection selected, it’s time to plan out how many blocks you need. The chart below is only a reference. The measurements listed are based on “average” quilt sizes ranging from a crib to a king size bed. Select your quilt and block size and find where they meet in the middle. This will tell you roughly how many blocks, rows, and columns you need!! However, it’s important to note that these measurements do not account for borders, sashing, and binding. They are also based on square blocks only, so you will need to plan accordingly for rectangle and diamond blocks. For this example, we will use a AA size blocks and act as if we are creating a a queen sized quilt.

Step 3: Fabric Yardage

Now that you have established your block and quilt size, you next step is find the right amount of fabric for your project. This is wear our handy Fabric Calculator comes in.

Well, this brings us to page 37 of the same PDF document, “Anita’s Guide – READ ME”. Here you will find our fabric calculator. This is the perfect guide for all your fabric needs. Start by selecting your block shape, then block size, and find where the two columns intersect.

The first measurement will tell you what size to pre-cut your fabric in order to completely cover the block with seam allowance. For example, for size AA, block shape square, the first measurement is 10” x 10”. The second number tells you how many pieces you can cut from one yard of fabric (45” x 36”). For a square size AA piece of fabric, this reads as 12 cuts. So you will be able to get 12 squares of base fabric out of one yard of fabric.

Now to find how many yards you will need, we have to head on over to page 36. Let’s say we would like to make a queen size quilt using AA size blocks. Find the queen size row and the AA finished block column and see where the two intersect. Our chart shows 11 columns x 11 rows with a total of 121 blocks for a queen size quilt. (See above pictures for reference.)

Using the number of cuts listed in the fabric calculator, which in our example is 12, divide the number of blocks by the number of cuts. This will give you the yardage  of fabric you’ll need to make your desired quilt, which in our case is 10.1 yards. If you are left with a decimal, we recommend rounding up to ensure you have plenty of room. For our example, I would purchase 10 ½  yards of fabrics.



Step 4: Find Your Color Story

Now let’s find our color story! The first tip is to start with a neutral color as your base. Embroidery always stands out better on solid fabric. Next, choose 3-5 coordinating prints. Use your fabric as a guide to match your thread colors. You may remember an acronym said all throughout math class in high-school called K.I.S.S., which meant keep it simple, silly. That’s exactly what you should do with your threads! Keep it simple. Too many thread colors will cause your theme to be lost. Find your dominant colors, then add a couple highlights and lowlights: one shade darker and one shade lighter! Once you have your color story aligned, use these colors throughout your entire project!



Now it’s time to work your magic by stitching out all of your necessary blocks! If you are wondering how to back and bind your project, we have some resourceful videos on our YouTube channel including How to Back and Bind a Tile Scene with our seamstress, Tammy!

I hope this blog inspires you to head into your next project with ease!

Don’t forget to tune in Friday, August 5th, at 9AM for our next blog release about feature stabilizer!

Happy Sewing!

Brooke



About Brooke Berglund

Hi there! I’m Brooke, your Content Specialist from Anita Goodesign. As we relaunch Anita's Blog, I am sew excited to join you in this journey where our two worlds—embroidery and sewing—collide. Together, we will find new ways to enjoy our passion for embroidery, all while exploring all of the creative avenues this industry has to offer. As someone who is mostly known as your video seamstress, as well as one of the story tellers behind your All Access magazine, I plan to make this blog fun and informative for all! Whether I am behind the computer or in front of the lens, I’ll be with you 100% of the way.

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