Fireworks Fat Quarter quilt pattern pieced by Sherri McConnell. Photo by Camille Roskelley.
The Fat Quarter cut of fabric is now a basic in the stash of most quilters. A Fat Quarter by definition is a piece of fabric which measures 18" wide and 22" long. Although the Fat Quarter is indeed just 1/4 yard, the extra width makes it possible to use the piece for a larger variety of quilt patterns.
Fat Quarters are readily available in bundles or individually. Most shops regularly cut Fat Quarters from each new bolt of fabric that arrives, so purchasing a Fat Quarter can help you decide if you need to go back and buy additional yardage of a particular fabric. Purchasing individual Fat Quarters makes sense if you just want to pick up a few different pieces of a collection. Buying Fat Quarters is also an easy way to build your stash. Most fabric manufacturers release each collection of their fabric lines as "Fat Quarter bundles" with one Fat Quarter from each included.
Many patterns are designed and developed specifically for Fat Quarters. These Fat Quarter patterns are especially helpful for beginner quilters-check to see how many Fat Quarters you need for your project and start creating a stack of coordinating Fat Quarters. Whether you use a ready-made bundle or choose your own fabrics, quilting with Fat Quarter patterns is a great way to practice putting fabrics together.
Flower Girl Fat Quarter quilt pattern pieced by Sherri McConnell. Photo by Camille Roskelley.
Since most Fat Quarters come pre-folded, you will need to press each flat quarter before beginning to cut your pieces. It is usually necessary to also trim and straighten the edge of the Fat Quarter before cutting. Once that's done, you can stack them in groups of four for cutting purposes. This saves a lot of time-just be sure to check your pattern to see if this option will work for you.
Now that you've learned a little bit about Fat Quarters and Fat Quarter patterns, here is a sampling of wonderful Fat Quarter patterns you might choose to make!
Diamond Diva by Heather Mulder Peterson offers table toppers, a table runner, and a quilt pattern all using varying amounts of Fat Quarters.
Here the Diamond Diva Table Topper Fat Quarter pattern is pieced and quilted by Sherri McConnell with a pattern by Heather Mulder Peterson.
1. Swoon is a fun, 9-block quilt that uses two Fat Quarters for each block. There are so many possibilities for this Fat Quarter pattern. The Swoon Fat Quarter pattern here is pieced by Sherri McConnell.
2. Flower Girl uses 27 Fat Quarters.
3. Fireworks is a 16 block quilt that uses just 16 Fat Quarters!
So which Fat Quarter patterns would you like to make first?
You might also enjoy learning about quilting with Jelly Rolls!