Making patchwork is a good way to use fabric scraps from other projects or to recycle good fabric pieces from worn-out garments. Patchwork patterns range from basic to intricate, the simplest made by stitching together assorted fabric squares of equal size. In the finished form of quilts, comforters, tablecloths, pillows, or curtains and even stuffed toys, patchwork adds color and charm to home decor.
Choose a simple pattern for your first project. Select a color scheme and collect fabrics. Fabrics should be of similar weight and texture. Calico is popular.
Wash the fabric in cold water and mild soap. Let dry, then iron.
Make or purchase a square template in the desired size.
Place the template along the straight grain of the fabric, and trace the template with a tailor's pencil or chalk.
Cut out pieces with sharp scissors.
Join the pieces with 1/4-inch seams.
Iron seams open or to one side.
To allow for seams, either the template must extend an extra 1/4 inch all the way around or you must cut 1/4 inch beyond the traced line. Making patchwork is a good way to use fabric scraps from other projects or to recycle good fabric pieces from worn-out garments. Choose a simple pattern for your first project. A shortcut for making this type of patchwork is to cut equal strips of fabric, piece them together, then cut horizontal strips and piece those together. Check crafts books for more complex patchwork motifs.