My First Quilt – The Layout

Laying out the quilt top was by far the hardest part of the process thus far.  I know I made it a much bigger deal than I needed to, but I really wanted a layout that I would love for years to come.  It took four hours of effort, and by the end I was feeling mildly ill from the stress, but I’m pleased with the result.

My main concern was keeping things fairly balanced.  I wanted the fussy cuts, the darks, lights, and brights to all be spread well over the entire quilt top.  I also wanted to sprinkle my favorites fairly evenly throughout.  I didn’t want to get in the cycle of putting things up and taking them down and rearranging everything multiple times.  I knew that if I started that, I would never be able to quit fiddling with it.

Since I was stuck on all of those ideas and since successfully organizing 81 blocks is easier said than done, my inner mathematician came out and I decided to sort.  1/4 of the blocks in this quilt have fussy cutting, so I started by separating all of the fussy cut blocks into three piles – light, dark, and bright.  Then I separated the rest of the blocks into five piles – very light, medium light, medium dark, very dark, and bright.  Next, I counted the blocks in each pile to figure out how many of each type should go in each row.  I tackled the quilt one row at a time, pulling blocks from each pile, and making sure I was selecting a nice range of colors.  I would tinker with the row until I was pleased with it, and then I would move on to the next row.  I think it worked pretty well, because when I was finally done, I only needed to switch two blocks.  For a perfectionist, that’s not too shabby.

As I type this, I’m looking over the laptop at my design wall and I am falling more and more in love with the quilt.  I’m very pleased with the layout.  While I really wanted to quit when I was about halfway through laying out the rows, I’m glad I stuck it out and got it all done in one session.  Now that the part I was dreading the most is behind me, I am incredibly excited about getting this put together.  It’s time to stop typing and start sewing.  Finished quilt top, here I come.

first quilt 29

This entry was posted in bed quilts, my first quilt, quilting, scrap quilts and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to My First Quilt – The Layout

  1. It’s beautiful!! Good Job!!

  2. Judy D in WA says:

    OH Bobbi, It’s wonderful! You should be very proud.

  3. That’s gorgeous. What a great first quilt.

  4. Sue Daurio says:

    Yep I”m in love with it too, so much motion in this one, just LOVE it.

  5. Astrid says:

    Gorgeous! I love how you put the blocks together. CONGRATS so far on your first quilt!

  6. randi says:

    This is your first quilt? Wow! I am super impressed. This is just beautiful! You are going to have to make more! 🙂

  7. Anita says:

    Wow, that’s lovely! I’d be enjoying looking at it too…great job.

    Visiting from Show and Tell. Have a great Wednesday!

  8. Love it! So worth that fussing but what a lot of cutting. 👍

    Looking forward to more progress pictures.

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