Quilty Math

Don’t say yuck! Math is fun! A puzzle! A game!

Anyway, when I posted these blocks last week, I was asked how I figured out how much of the background yellow I needed for this quilt. I decided to try to explain that in a post.

First of all, my “blocks” will finish at 3 by 9 inches. There is a 3 inch square and a 3 by 6 inch print rectangle (finished sizes) for each.

I wanted my quilt to be approximately 60 by 72 inches. I find that to be a good nap quilt size. My blocks are 9 inches wide. So 60 divided by 9 is 6.667. I round up to 7 blocks wide which is 63 inches. A little big, but close enough.

Now I want my quilt to be 72 inches long and my blocks are 3 inches long. 72 divided by 3 is a perfect 24.

Now I know my block layout will be 7 by 24. Each “block” has one print rectangle and one yellow background square, so I need 7 times 24 or 168 of each.

Still with me?

Good. Now I’m going to start discussing in cut sizes. I can get 12 3 1/2 inch squares from one 3 1/2 inch strip of fabric cut selvedge to selvedge.

168 divided by 12 is 14, so I know I need 14 strips that I will subcut into 3 1/2 inch squares.

14 times 3 1/2 inch wide strips is 49 inches, which translates to 1.36 yards. I’d buy 1 1/2 yards to be safe.

These directions are for determining yardage using a rotary cutter and ruler. I would calculate a bit differently if I were using my die cutter, but that’s info for another post.

I’m a bit of a math geek and I can do these calculations mostly in my head. I realize not everyone can. It’s a puzzle to me and I enjoy it. I’m weird that way!

I hope this helps. It’s easier to do than to explain. I sure hope this makes sense. Have a great day!

About katyquilts

I am a wife, mom of four amazing adult kids, and a former librarian. I love making everything from traditional quilts to art quilts. I am thankful to God my Father and Creator for the gift of creativity!
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3 Responses to Quilty Math

  1. I just love this pattern–but that math is definitely over my head (as it seems is following quilt patterns lately). I plan to use it to make two little mini dolly quilts for my Granddaughters…using novelty prints…thanks for sharing hugs, Julierose

  2. Nann says:

    One of the first quilting books I bought was Speed-Cut Quilts by Donna Poster, a how-to book when rotary cutting was new. The book had a chart for determining exactly how much fabric to buy. It didn’t take me long to realize that buying fabric and sewing fabric are related but different activities. Like you, I can figure out how much fabric a block or an entire quilt will require. It’s handy to have that in one’s head.

  3. Quiltmouse says:

    Nope, I’m not a math geek, but you make sense. I can’t do it in my head, so I use Excel spreadsheet.

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