Here is the tutorial for the Getting Antsy Picnic Quilt! I went over the background for this quilt in the previous quilt background post, so I’ll just jump right into the tutorial here. I used the Charlie Harper Fat Quarter Bundle from Warp & Weft as the base and inspiration for the quilt.

A word of warning about this tutorial. It is simplified and assumes that you know some basics about quilting and have made a quilt before.  If you have any questions please feel free to email me – and I’ll do my best to help you out.

You will need:

  • 1 set of 7 Charlie Harper fat quarters (from Warp & Weft here)
  • 6 solid coloured fat quarters
  • 3/4 yard/metre border (cut to 2 3/4″ strips)
  • 1/2 yard/metre binding (cut to 2 1/2″ strips)
  • 4 yards/metres non-directional backing
  • 1/8″ black ribbon (100% polyester)
  • 1/4″ black ribbon (100% polyester)
  • scraps of black quilting cotton (fits within 1 fat quarter)
  • quilt batting to fit – aprox. 75″x75″

If you would like to colour in your layout instead of laying it out you can click here to print out the quilt template and use it to plan your quilt. I laid out my fabrics with the “cool” colours on the top left and the “warm” colours on the bottom right and worked my way to the centre with each.

Here we go…

  1. Cut each of your 13 fat quarter into 3 rectangles 5.75″ high x 19.75″ high each. You should have 39 rectangles in total.
  2. Make 9 black hexies. If you’d like you can use my no-baste hexie tutorial. In the tutorial post there is also a template for creating the hexies in the proper size. They should be 3.5″ from point to point and 3″ high.
  3. Lay out your rectangles in the order you want them. You will need 3 columns with 12 rectangles each. You will have 3 rectangles left over. Lay out your ants as well so you can make sure to position them where the background is not as busy. This way they will show up better when you stitch them on. (As you can see I was going to mark a “trail” for the ants in ribbon and changed my mind at the end.)
  4. Stitch each column together in the order you placed the rectangles.
  5. Press each seam open.
  6. Pin the columns together at each seam and stitch them together. Press your seams open.
  7. Piece the border strips together to make one strip aprox. 250″ long.
  8. Stitch the border to the top and bottom of the quilt first.
  9. Trim the strip to 90 degrees at each corner as you go. Stitch the border to the left and right side once the top and bottom are sewn and trimmed. Press all of your seams open.
  10. Piece your backing together. I used the 3 extra rectangles + a few small scraps of my favorite prints and a solid red square. I cut my backing fabric in half and pieced one half on each side of the scrappy stripe. Then I trimmed off enough height from the top piece of backing fabric to allow the stripe to be approximately 1/3 of the way down the back. (see a photo in the last post)
  11. Lay your backing right side down on the floor or table, place your batting on top of the backing. Add your quilt top right side up to create your quilt sandwich. Make sure to align the stipe on the backing and the stripes on the quilt top so they match up with where you will be quilting/tying your quilt. Baste/Spray/Pin to hold everything together.
  12. Remove the paper hexie template from each hexie and pin them in place where the ants will go. This marks the quilt, so you can avoid tying it where the ants are attached. The body of the ant is made by matching two straight hexie sides. The head is made by matching the point on one hexie with the centre straight edge of another. (Please ignore the ribbon “trail” under the bottom ant.)
  13. Tie your quilt at the corner of each rectangle and twice in-between along the lines. I used painter’s tape and my quilting ruler to keep track of where I was tying.
  14. Machine quilt the border. I stitched my lines about 1/2″ apart.
  15. Cut 6 legs from 1/4″ ribbon per ant. The front legs are 2 1/2″ long and the back legs are 3″ long. Also cut 2 antennae from 1/8″ ribbon per ant. These are also 2 1/2″ long. Use a flame to *carefully* melt both ends of each leg or antennae. This will prevent them from fraying.
  16. Pin the ribbon legs and antennae to your hexies as indicated in the photo. About 1/2″ of one end of each ribbon will be underneath the hexie. Pin along the edges of the hexie to keep it in place as well.
  17. Stitch each ant to the quilt. Sew along the centre of each ribbon and around the edge of each hexie. Repeat until all three ants have been stitched on.
  18. Sew the binding strips together to make one long strip aprox. 300″ long. Bind your quilt using your favorite method. I use the cluck cluck sew tutorial to machine stitch my bindings.

All finished and ready for picnicing. Go take some photos and show it off! And of course, I’d love to see your creations. You can share your projects on Twitter and Instagram @sherrisylvester with the hashtag #alongforthreadride or #threadridinghood, or post them on the Thread Riding Hood Facebook page. (As usual, this tutorial is for personal/charitable use only – thanks!)

** Please note: This is a sponsored post and some of the fabric was provided to me at no cost by Warp & Weft. However, as always, all opinions are my own and I will never promote something to you that I do not love myself. **