Four Reasons to Love Paint-by-Number Quilts

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Hello C&T blog readers, I’m Kerry, and my pattern pack Paint-by-Number Quilts is out now! In it are four animal pictorial appliqué patterns, created using a turned-edge machine-stitched technique. I thought today I would explain why I choose to work with this style of appliqué. There are four patterns, so I have four reasons why I think you'll love it too!

  1. No sewing (at first)! Whilst I love to sew, the idea of stitching down lots of small pieces of fabric for the purpose of holding them together while making a larger appliqué design doesn’t thrill me. My preferred method is to glue everything together first, and I only start to stitch at the quilting stage. I tend to work in sections whilst watching TV in an evening, so I’m not chained to the sewing machine. The other perk of gluing without stitching is that it’s a lot easier to switch out a piece of fabric that just isn’t working.
  2. No fraying! I’m always concerned with raw-edge quilts that they will eventually fray. My quilts are designed as wallhangings generally, but I like the idea that I can put them in the washing machine if something untoward was to happen to them. Plus, you also have the option of washing them for the crinkly look too.
  3. Cost-conscious! It’s true that you will probably go through a couple of glue pen refills on a project; however, your only other needs are freezer paper and washi tape, which are inexpensive supplies. No need for Wonder Under (or other fusibles) to cover the whole quilt. Plus, a lot of the fabric colors you will need are in such small quantities that you can find them in your scrap basket.
  4. The reveal! It’s fun to work with the freezer paper on top of the fabric because you get to reveal a little more as you finish all of the edges of that piece. As you peel off more and more pieces of paper, your design starts to come to life and that’s exciting!

Watch a time-lapse video of my technique below!

You can see more of my quilts—both appliqué and other patchwork quilts I like to work on—on my website, pennydog.com, or on Instagram @pennydog.

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  • Kerry Foster
  • Paint-by-Number Quilts
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