How to Sew Patchwork

Updated April 17, 2017

Patchwork is a specific type of quilting that uses squares of fabric to create patterns. There are specific patterns of patchwork, or the patches can simply be sewn randomly into strips and then quilted together. Patchwork is highly customisable, depending on what the quilt will be used for and the materials you have available, which has made it a very popular and economical way to quilt. Patchwork quilts consist of consist of patchwork, backing and batting, and can be sewn by machine or by hand.

Cut all patches into same-size squares or strips. These can be of any size, but ensure you leave at least 1/2-inch on each side of the patch for a seam allowance. Arrange them in a pattern, or lay them out randomly.

Hold two patches face-to-face and stitch them together approximately one half inch from the edge. Make a strip of patches the width of your quilt by stitching patches in a row in the fashion. Make enough strips to cover the length of your quilt.

Lay two strips of patches face-to-face and stitch together in the same manner. Continue until the entire front of the quilt has been sewn into one solid piece.

Cut the backing material to the size of the front of the quilt, ensuring you leave at least 1/2-inch seam allowance on each side.

Place the patchwork and the backing material face to face, and sew three sides closed 1/2-inch from the edge of the material.

Lay batting over the backing of the quilt, and tack it into place by adding a few stitches to each corner.

Turn the quilt right side out, tucking all of the batting between the patchwork and the backing. Fold 1/2-inch of the patchwork and 1/2-inch of the backing under, and stitch through it to close the fourth side of the quilt.

Things You'll Need

  • Patches
  • Backing material
  • Batting
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About the Author

Leah Newman has been a professional writer since 1999, writing about fine arts both in print and online. She specializes in how-to articles covering DIY projects. Newman holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Georgia and a Graduate Certificate in Children's Literature from Pennsylvania State University.