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Steps To Making a Collage T-Shirt Quilt - Week 4 Putting It All Together

This week we will start to put it all together! The hard part is done now you start to play with the layout. I like to put the larger blocks as foundations on the corners and sides. I try not to put too many rows or columns in, rather a more abstract look. You will need to use some Y-seams to get all of the pieces together. The beauty of it is, since you have all pieces in 4" multiples, you will be able to get it all into a beautiful quilt shape.

As you can see, I just start placing, moving pieces as I go. I try to get colors spread across the quilt and not all clumped together. Once I have all of the t-shirt graphics places, you will see I have a few open spaces, most are 4x4", 4x8", etc. This is where you use the saved scraps of the shirts. Look through your stack and choose what color you think would go best and stabilize and cut out the same as before.

Final lay out with fillers

Start with a section and just keep putting together. You can find several YouTube videos on Y-seams if you are unsure about how to do them.

Here is an example of what a Y-seam will look like. In this case, you would continue to finish the seam on the blue shirt and then attach to the pink shirt. It takes a little practice but is amazing to see what can be created with this skill!

The next step is to choose a backing and load it on the longarm. I do my own longarming - the benefit of this is the uniformity and ability to use digital designs. I find that to quilt it on my domestic machine that the quilt is usually too large! I prefer wideback fabric for T-shirt quilts. It cuts down on the bulk of a seam when you already have a lot layered on the quilt!

I chose the diagonal plaid bias cut pantograph from Urban Elementz. I used 100% cotton batting from Quilters Dream and cool grey thread from Glide/Filtec.

Once complete, I trim the edges and machine bind it. Ready for gifting. There have been many tears whenthe completed quilt is revealed! What a special way to preserve memories!

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