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Thread: Material needed

  1. #1
    Senior Member Plumtree's Avatar
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    I am teaching a begining quilting class for my homeschool co-op. We are for their final project they are doing a 4 patch lap quilt that should end up at 64x64. I asked the parents to provide 3 1/4 yds. of fabric for the back, one parent has become upset with me saying that this is too much fabric and I am being wastful with others money. This fabric will also be a 4 in. border for the quilt top. I am assuming that the fabric will not be wide enough and will have to be cut in half then sewn back together to make it wider, does that make sense.

    I guess what I am asking is this, is it too much fabric. I am allowing for boo boo's and I know there will be some extra but didnt' think it was a ton extra, definatly not enough to complain about. Would 2 yrds be more than enough, I just don't want them to run out.
    Thank for your help

    Tammy

  2. #2
    Super Member Rebecca VLQ's Avatar
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    No, because think about it: If you have a yard as 44" x 36 " if you got 2 yards, you'd have 44" x 72"!

    I can't picture it...does Rikki Timms do a diagonal cut that makes your fabric "grow"? And if so, does that mom have the link?

    There might be a trick to do it. And, what about the front? Who is paying for the front?

  3. #3
    Senior Member Plumtree's Avatar
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    Thank you. They are supplying the fabric for the top as well but only the back fabric is being questioned. It is her friends and someone at joanne's that told her that would be enough to back a king.

  4. #4
    Super Member carolaug's Avatar
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    Just piece the back...I have done that for quilts that I do not want to spend a lot of money on. They look great and they will be able to use cotton shirts that they no longer use.

  5. #5
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    Do you need to make them that large?

    If you narrow the finished size of the top to 60 inches or narrower, than you could (depending on the design of the backing) get by with one and a half widths of fabric. Which still comes out to about three yards of fabric. (68 + 34 = 102 inches -> okay, it's 2-5/6 yards. This does not give you any fabric left over for borders or wiggle room.

    If you went to a finished size of approximately 40 inches wide by 60 inches long - you could squeak by with one width of fabric.

    Many fabrics are only 42 -43 inches wide - even before washing - so one and a half widths of fabric would not be wide enough for a 64 inch top anyway - after accounting for selvages and seams

    I came up with a need for approximately 3-3/4 yards of fabric - assuming two inches "extra" around each side of the top - and this does not take into account any possible lengthwise shrinkage of the fabric if it's washed before cutting or if it's cut crooked and needs to be straightened out.

  6. #6
    Power Poster MadQuilter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Plumtree
    It is her friends and someone at joanne's that told her that would be enough to back a king.
    Seriously?! I would tell the mom that you are using the pattern that requires X amount which may allow for a small mis-cut. If she thinks that her kid can get it done with less, then you can't be held accountable when the project goes flop. A King Size takes what - 7-9 yards?

  7. #7
    Super Member Maggiesmom's Avatar
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    Use scraps and other fabrics and create back art for your quilt. I have often done that. However I was thinking that 3 1/4 would be almost not enough if you were counting on borders too. 2 yards would have been what I would have asked. You aslso have to allow for the quilting.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Plumtree
    Thank you. They are supplying the fabric for the top as well but only the back fabric is being questioned. It is her friends and someone at joanne's that told her that would be enough to back a king.
    SNORT!! :roll: :hunf: :thumbdown:

    Maybe you could draw this out on graph paper and tell them that so may square inches will only cover the same number of square inches.

    If they are having issues with the amounts of fabric, perhaps it would be an idea to go to a (very) small table topper. Many of the techniques could still be taught. Or even a mug rug!

  9. #9
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    No it is not too much. Tell her to get the person or persons who are questioning it to calculate and bring that much in.
    However, before you do that, give them the instructions for adding to the width for the back.
    For the 3 1/4 yds you are asking for you will have a piece about 65" by one half thr width of the fabric for your borders which you say the student will need.
    Sometime you have to let others discover their mistake.

    I would tell the mother that you will need enough fabric for the back for the finished size. and x amount for the borders and then when there is not enough fabric ask to bring more..........
    Don't argue with anyone about it but just give the measurements and ask them to get the amount of fabric needed.

    And I would not redesign the back with piecing to accommodate the questioners........that would change your instructions for the class and might confuse some students.

  10. #10
    Moderator QuiltnNan's Avatar
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    can you show the complainer these posts to let her know you are not being unreasonable?

  11. #11
    Power Poster Sadiemae's Avatar
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    I would not argue either. I would ask her to come in and show me how she can make it large enough with 2 yards. She won't be able to...

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maggiesmom
    Use scraps and other fabrics and create back art for your quilt. I have often done that. However I was thinking that 3 1/4 would be almost not enough if you were counting on borders too. 2 yards would have been what I would have asked. You aslso have to allow for the quilting.
    And these scraps would come from where?

  13. #13
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    It sounds like mom and the Joann's employee have never quilted and do not understand how the yardage is being used. Poor child...

  14. #14
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    I would ask them to get whatever amount will be needed for the border.............since it should match the rest of the top...

    and then tell them to get sufficient amount for the backing of fabric of their choice.

    You still need to get the borders. Since you assumed to use the 1/2 width strip for the borders, which is the right amount, they don't understand the calculations.

    Your calculations for this are correct.

  15. #15
    Super Member Cris's Avatar
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    Ok the backing calculator from http://www.victorianaquiltdesigns.com/ says:
    Length: 64 up to 80 inches wide, you need 4 yards.
    To calculate: length x 2 + 16"

  16. #16
    Super Member Furza Flyin's Avatar
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    If it is a matter of cost, She can go to the discounted fabric section in Joanns or even Walmart. She could use a cotton sheet for the backing as well. She just wouldnt have the borders.

  17. #17
    Senior Member Plumtree's Avatar
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    Thank you all, glad to know I am not out of my mind here. Math is not my strong suit so when mine gets questioned I get nervous.
    I will not change the pattern because I would then have to change it for the rest of the class, which isnt' fair to me or the girls that have all ready purchased fabric. I realize now that this lap quilt will be a bit big and the next group it will be sized down a bit, I'm learning too. I just didn't like the way I felt after reading this email and wanted to make sure my math and thinking were on the same path.

    Happy Quilting
    Tammy

  18. #18
    Power Poster Sadiemae's Avatar
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    Sometimes you just can't please everyone.

  19. #19
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    I did quilts for my DD's class project for the annual auction. One woman always questioned my quantities. What was her expertise? Her FIL was in the schmata (that's Yiddish for "rags") business. I offered to let her take over. No, she couldn't because...guess what...she couldn't quilt. She is also the woman who saw the kids' handprints for the back and told me (sight unseen) the quilt was not colorful enough. So, stick to your guns. You are making this a project where teh kids have success. Not frustration. Not failure. Do what you know. If there is extra, which will be a half-width or so of each piece, make a charity quilt for whatever charity the kids choose. You'll have enough for a front and back that way. A king quilt takes about 10-11 yards. NO less. if the quilt is 108x108, that is three yards wide by three yards long. You do not want your backing shorter than the quilt. You want to have some extra room. One yard split three ways (across the three strips) is only 12", that's 6" on top and 6" on bottom and 6" on each side and more work that way too.

  20. #20
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    I agree, ask her to show you how she can cover the back with 2 yards. It can't be done. I think piecing the back will make it too complicated for the girls. They are just beginners and it is sometimes hard to get the backing to lay flat when it is pieced. Ask the mother how many quilts she has made. I'll bet between the sales girl at JA's and her the number is zero. JMHO
    Sue

  21. #21
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    If you are using a printed pattern - or one designed by someone else - just "their" requirements and go from there and tell "whoever" that this is what is needed.

    Have you made a "practice one" to make sure it will work?

    I think 3-1/4 yards is going to be skimpy - especially if the fabric is less than 45 inches wide (after washing)

    Are you able to go with any of these mothers and/or students when they go shopping? Is this mother looking at the most expensive fabrics available?

  22. #22
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    Have them get a twin sheet at walmart for the back $5. See if that makes them happy.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sadiemae
    I would not argue either. I would ask her to come in and show me how she can make it large enough with 2 yards. She won't be able to...
    Good thinking, Sadie Mae!
    Instead of accusing and complaining, that woman should thank you for using your skill to enrich her child's life and education. But as Judge Judy often says, "No good deed goes unpunished." :( Usually when I buy fabric, I have to square it up on both ends, losing a few inches. My thinking when I'm buying fabric for a project of any kind is, "Buy plenty. I can always use the extra, if there is any, to make something else." Most of us know the aggravation and problems of running short of fabric and not being able to find more of what we need.

  24. #24
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    I always err on the side of a little extra for making a quilt. I've been doing quilts for quite a while and accidents happen. If they have extra left, you could supply the pattern for a matching pillow or pillow case?

  25. #25
    Senior Member SEGASAL's Avatar
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    I agree with everyone on the board. Tell her to suck it up and bring what you need. I do not think that it is to much fabric. Have you tried to go like Joann's and see if you can get a school discount so that you can buy the whole bolt of material or maybe two colts?

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