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Simple Patchwork Measurements

the sawtooth star quilt block with a center square in a square.

There is a way to make designing your own quilts much more frugal and easy. It is done by being consistent and using the same size grids for your patchwork.

This is both simple and frugal. With simple measurements, you try and make your grids as consistent as possible. The most common sizes are 2 inches finished, and 3 inches finished. A 2 inch grid makes a 4 patch finish at 4 inches, and a 3 patch finish at 6 inches. A 3 inch grid makes a 4 patch finish at 6 inches, and a 6 patch finish at 9 inches.

This consistency helps you in several ways. First of all, the inch and half inch measurements on the ruler are easier to find. When you use the same measurements all the time, some of the other measurements really sink into your brain. For instance, it becomes very easy to remember the size of the squares you must cut to make half square triangles.

Finally, if you make a block you decide you don't want to put in your quilt, you can just save it for another project. If you get in the mood to make a particular block, you can make some, knowing that it will fit in future projects.

As you become a more experienced quilter and want to use more difficult grids, you understand patches and piecework so well that it is easy to move to the harder cuts and projects.

It is kind of like riding a bike with training wheels. It takes a lot of the frustration out of understanding quilt squares to start with easy measurements.

picture of a 9 patch grid

To the left is pictured a 9 patch grid. When you are finishing your grids at 2 inches, that means all your squares will be cut at 2 1/2 x 2 1/2 inches raw. Your block will finish at 6 inches.

If you decide to replace two of the grids with a rectangle, you are eliminating the center seam, so all rectangles will be cut at 4 1/2 x 2 1/2 inches inches raw.

If you are just beginning quilting, be frugal and take it slow and you won't get so frustrated or confused by quilting measurement. Once you understand, it will become easy for you.




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