How to Use Small Quilt Panels


The popularity of quilt panels has been on the rise for the past few years and shows no signs of dipping anytime soon. The appeal of a large panel, where the image is at least 24” inches wide and stretches from selvage to selvage, is easy to see. A motif that large can readily take center stage in a quick-and-easy quilt.

Sometimes one panel includes images in a variety of sizes, which offers the quiltmaker more variety. But if you don’t have a pattern that was written specifically with that panel in mind, it may lead to more questions about how to get the most out of the different motifs.

In the newest season of the free video series “My First Quilt,” host Sara Gallegos has some ideas for you. In “How to Quilt with Small Panels,” she discusses the challenges of fussy cutting parts of a fabric and shows how to put each of the blocks together. At the end of the episode, see how two different colorways can create different looking quilts from the same pattern.

How to Quilt with Small Panels

Click here to watch the free video “How to Quilt with Small Panels.” It’s a short episode that’s packed with information and is sure to give you ideas of how to fussy cut and use your favorite panels.

Pippa the HenAnd ICYMI, associate editor Anissa Arnold detailed how she used the small portions of a Pippa the Hen quilt panel from Susybee to make a little quilted bag a few months ago. Anissa is a highly skilled quilter and home-dec designer/sewist, so she was able to whip up this project in nothing flat. Fortunately for us, she wrote out a tutorial for her article “Off the Wall: Creative Uses for Fabric Panels,” which you will definitely want to read if you have baby quilt panels you want to use.

Anissa Arnold used the small portions of a Pippa the Hen panel to make this gift bag.

Anissa Arnold used the small portions of a Pippa the Hen panel to make this gift bag.

Those are just a couple of resources for how to use small fabric panels for quilting. With more quilt panels coming out all the time and more quilters wanting to make fast projects for giving without skimping on the “wow” factor, we’re always on the lookout for new, fun ways to use them. If you’ve used a panel in a unique way, leave a comment below—we’d love to hear from you.

Thank you to our sponsors: BabyLock, Hobbs Bonded Fibers, Madeira Thread, and FreeSpirit Fabric for making the “My First Quilt” series possible!

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