Storytime Squares Tips & Tricks–Dimensions, Chain Piecing and Borders

100 Quilts for Kids Quilt Along Schedule

Storytime Squares Tutorial by Rae Hoekstra of Made By Rae (used with permission)
Monday, September 12-Wednesday, September 21–Quilting Techniques
Wednesday, September 14- All About the Quilting 
Tuesday, September 20- Spacing Your Quilting

Friday, September 23 – 100 Quilts for Kids Quilt Along Link Up 

Wednesday, October 12- Machine Binding Tutorial
Wednesday, October 12-14 – 2nd 100 Quilts for Kids Link Up
There is always more than one way to make a quilt.  Rae’s pattern suggests sewing squares together and cutting your sashing to match the length of your squares.  Because I am not the most accurate piecer in the world, I usually cut my sashing and borders to the length that my sewn quilt squares *should* be.  I fiddle with the squares and border a bit as I sew them together, and this usually gives me borders that are (mostly) square and aren’t nearly as flared as they would otherwise be.

If you are using 5 inch squares and want to pre-cut your borders, here are the dimensions I used:

(2) 2.75 x 9.5 inch strips
(2) 2.75 x 14 inch strips
(2) 2.75 x 23.5 inch strips
(2) 2.75 x 28 inch strips
(2) 2.75 x 37 inch strips **
(2) 2.75 x 41 inch strips **

**I cut my outer border strips at 2.75 x 3.5 inches. This gave me room to trim the border down to my desired size after quilting. It isn’t necessary, just a personal preference

Tips & Tricks: Chain Piecing
 Chain piecing is another word for assembly line piecing. Instead of sewing two blocks together, cutting the threads and putting them in a pile, you sew multiple pairs of blocks together in a row, without cutting the threads between them. This speeds up your piecing, and if your machine tends to sputter or catch threads if the needle isn’t on the fabric when you start sewing, this helps that problem.  For this pattern, you will have:

(2) 3 square strips, (2) 5 square strips, (2) 6 square strips, and (2) 8 square strips, so don’t chain piece all of your squares, or you will have to un-pick a few to be left with 3 and 5 square strips.

Tips and Tricks: Sewing on Borders

Typically, when I sew sashing/borders to quilts, I find the middle of both the border and the quilt/block (A), and pin. (I didn’t in this picture, which I find hilarious).  Next, I match and pin the ends together (B). If there are seams to match (C), then I pin on both sides of the seam, and then anywhere else I need to. If there aren’t seams to match, then I just fill in with pins where necessary, and sew the two pieces together.

I think this quilt pattern would look great with a non-neutral solid border. It also lends itself to different sizes. Perhaps you are using larger squares, or you don’t want to have to piece your quilt back–I made this one out of charm packs we cut at our DC Modern meeting from various members’ stashes to see what it would look like without an outside border. I think it works well, and yes, my quilt holder was thrilled to be holding the quilt. Wish you could see his happy face. Ha!

If you have any questions, you can ask them in the 100 Quilts for Kids flickr group. Thanks, and happy sewing!  The quilt along posts will continue on September 7 with a discussion (and lots of great pictures) of pieced quilt backs.

Linked up here:

{Sew} Modern Monday at Canoe Ridge Creations

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  1. Posted August 29, 2011 at 1:30 pm | Permalink

    Looking good. Anxious to get started!

  2. Posted August 29, 2011 at 2:24 pm | Permalink

    hmmm…might just be the perfect quilt to use my Neptune charm pack with! Thanks!

  3. Kristie
    Posted August 29, 2011 at 12:53 pm | Permalink

    Love this post and the last one. Great to present design ideas! Have pinned this for my to-dos and will try to get one out in Sept/Oct, but for sure in time for Christmas again this year to my local Children’s hospital!

  4. Posted August 29, 2011 at 4:58 pm | Permalink

    Hope to get mine started this week – I just have to get two quilts machine quilted and one sandwiched for hand quilting before starting – and I’m planning on doing a post on 100 Quilts for Kids this coming Sunday!

  5. Posted August 29, 2011 at 5:02 pm | Permalink

    It’s looking good! :) Thanks for linking up to {Sew} Modern Monday and have a great week!

  6. Posted August 30, 2011 at 2:35 pm | Permalink

    Cute quilt top. You made such good use of that fluorescent orange that seemed to going with nothing else!

  7. Morgane @ Bear,Dolly and Moi
    Posted August 31, 2011 at 1:51 pm | Permalink

    I have been working on mine, I just finished the top, may be not very modern…hopefully it will be OK!
    thanks for the quilt along, it is a perfect afternoon project.

  8. Posted September 3, 2011 at 11:39 am | Permalink

    I just found your blog…we are practically neighbors. I live in Maryland, but all the way down in St. Mary’s County, so not really neighbors after all…

    I am going to make this out of some flannels I have leftover from various quilts and pillows I’ve made for my kids and donate it to the 100 Quilts project. Thanks for the pattern!

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