How To Make A T-Shirt Quilt
Finished size: 58" X 58"
2 yards black cotton fabric for sashing and binding (pre-shrink)
4 yards of flannel for backing (pre-shrink)
1 2/3 yards of hi-loft poly batting
I have never been a fan of the heavy interfaced T-Shirt Quilts. I prefer to stabilize the knit squares with a 1 1/4" strip of cotton sashing between the blocks. If you use your serger, the fabric feeds evenly and precisely at a 1/4" seam allowance. Be sure to put the cotton fabric on top while serging or sewing with a walking foot. I'm careful to remove my pins before the serger knife gets too close! I cut my squares 11". This optimizes the pattern, but 12 1/2" would be okay if you do not have enough t-shirts and want to put patchwork or photo blocks in between.
I use a hi-loft poly batting because I love the squishy, cozy feeling of the soft t-shirt fabrics and the flannel back. Be sure to preshrink your flannel. It will shrink much more than you might think, width as well as length.
First, on the straight of grain, I cut my 6 long sashings 56" X 1 1/4" and two 58" X 1 1/4". Then I cut my binding strips, 4 of them at 72" X 2 1/2". (Your fabric may have shrunk some, so it may not be quite 72" inches long.) Next I cut the 20 sashing strips at 11" X 1 1/4". Sew the short sashing strips to your blocks. Sew together to form 5 rows of 5 blocks. Now I break the rules because I did not add corner posts. You must be careful to line up your blocks carefully when adding the long in between rows of sashing so the blocks do not get off kilter. Sew your rows together then add your last two 56" long sashing to the sides and then add the two remaining 58" lengths top and bottom.
If I use a wider sashing, I think the sashing posts are important to use to keep things square and to prevent the rippling effect of my long piece.
For quilting on this piece I quilted in the middle of the sashings with a walking foot. After quilting add your binding.
This quilt turned out 58" X 58". A nice size for a comfort throw.
Care and Treatment For Your Fabrics - Courtesy of P&B Textiles
It is the nature of cotton fabric that some changes may occur when it is washed and dried. Regional water quality, water temperature, detergent varieties and dryer temperature can all affect shrinkage, bleeding and fading.
At P&B Textiles, we pride ourselves in producing superior fabrics, which will retain their quality if properly treated. Please help to educate your customers about the proper care of cotton fabrics:
1. If you are making an art quilt or wall hanging that won't be washed, it is recommended that you do not pre-wash your fabric.
2. If the quilt is dusty, tumble it in a cool dryer for a few minutes and shake it out.
3. If you pre-wash fabric, do not use hot water or a hot dryer. Once quilts are made, they should only be washed and dried in cold water and a cool dryer (or dried flat), and only if the fabric was pre-shrunk prior to construction of the quilt.
4. If you are making a quilt with light and dark fabrics, it is suggested that you pre-wash the dark fabrics to remove any potential bleeding This can be done in cold water. A good test of bleeding is to add a light colored or white piece of fabric to the dark wash and see if any color bleeds onto it. If so, repeat the washing process until the light colored swatch comes out without any color change.
5. Detergents can fade fabrics. It is recommended that you use a gentle detergent to wash quilts and no detergent at all for pre-shrinking. Orvis Quilt Soak is recommended.
If you have followed these guidelines, your fabric should not shrink more than 5% selvage to selvage and most fabrics won't bleed or fade at all.