Shelf liner ideas are always useful – I tend to have a lot of orphan quilt blocks because I make up individual blocks so that I can show you the tutorial. These can be made into cushions or bags, but are also very useful to making shelf liners. I know that some quilters are nervous of the maths of quilting, so I thought that it might be helpful to explain how I decide how much to add to the edges of a quilt block in order to make it the right size for a shelf liner.
I’m not showing the quilt block pattern here, but if you are interested then you can find that on Hope of Hartford quilt block pattern.
Shelf liner ideas – the maths
The first thing to note is that quilt blocks are usually square while shelf liners are more likely to be rectangular. This particular shelf that I want to line is 13″ by 17″ and the quilt block that I’m using is a 10″ square finished size. That means that I have to add a total of 7″ to the sides of the block (17″ minus 10″) and a total of 3″ (13″ minus 10″) to the top and bottom of the block.
Obviously I want the quilt block to be in the middle of the shelf liner, so I need to split the 7″ so that I can add it on each side. Half of 7″ is 3.1/2″. Each one of these strips will have a 1/4″ seam either side, so I need to add 1/2″ seam allowance to each strip. That means that for the sides I have cut two strips 4″ wide by 10.1/2″ long and sewn them to the sides of the block.
In the same way, I want to split the 3″ for the top and bottom. Half of 3″ is 1.1/2″ and I will again need to add 1/2″ seam allowance to each strip. So the measurements for the top and bottom strips are 2″ wide by 17.1/2″ long. This last measurement is from the 10″ block plus two 3.1/2″ strips as the top and bottom strips have to stretch across the block and side strips. Sew the strips in place and press.
Finishing the shelf liner
Cut rectangles of backing fabric and wadding which are slightly larger than the patchwork top. Layer these with the wadding on the bottom, then the backing with right side up and then the patchwork with right side down.
Pin and using a 1/4″ seam sew three and a half edges, leaving a gap of several inches to turn the shelf liner right side out.
Trim the edges and clip across the corners to reduce bulk.
Turn the shelf liner right side out through the gap. Turn under a small hem across the gap, press, and sew all round the edge of the shelf liner.
As you can see, I have sewn around the edge of the shelf liner, the outline of the quilt block and also the star contained within the block. This all helps to hold the three layers in place.
I hope that’s helped you with some shelf liner ideas. Here’s the video:
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