Advice pls on estimating yardage

Advice pls on estimating yardage

Post by Sonja Car » Thu, 10 Oct 1996 04:00:00



Does anyone out there have a good method of estimating the amount of
fabric/yardage you need to buy once you've designed the quilt? (of course
in Canada we would use metres tho' I don't think "metrage" is a word). I
not a very experienced quiltmaker but still prefer my own designs to
those straight out of the book. So far, I tend to underestimate how much
fabric I need, and end up redesigning the quilt using muslin to fill out
the design (using muslin - sound familiar). The designs look good but for
my next quilt - something for me - I'd like to be able to have/buy enough
fabric so I won't be caught short (literally).

I thought about using a percentage method (meaning if red takes up 10
percent of the block then it should take up 10 percent of the total quilt
area). I haven't tried that yet. Does anyone do that?

Any suggestions would be appreciated.

Sonja
Toronto

 
 
 

Advice pls on estimating yardage

Post by Sue Noetze » Fri, 11 Oct 1996 04:00:00


Quote:

> Does anyone out there have a good method of estimating the amount of
> fabric/yardage you need to buy once you've designed the quilt? (of course
> in Canada we would use metres tho' I don't think "metrage" is a word). I
> not a very experienced quiltmaker but still prefer my own designs to
> those straight out of the book. So far, I tend to underestimate how much
> fabric I need, and end up redesigning the quilt using muslin to fill out
> the design (using muslin - sound familiar). The designs look good but for
> my next quilt - something for me - I'd like to be able to have/buy enough
> fabric so I won't be caught short (literally).

> I thought about using a percentage method (meaning if red takes up 10
> percent of the block then it should take up 10 percent of the total quilt
> area). I haven't tried that yet. Does anyone do that?

> Any suggestions would be appreciated.

> Sonja
> Toronto

I probably use the most tedious method. Others will probably have better
suggestions. Here is what I do:

I develop a cutting plan for the quilt. Such as, how many of each shape
of each color I need. How many strips of what width will I need to
provide those shapes. I add up the widths of all the strips of one color
to determine how much to buy of that color (including a healthy
shrinkage, and mistake factor). If I am doing a scrappy quilt, I divide
this amount amongst however many fabrics I want to use.

It is fairly time consuming, but pretty accurate for me.

 
 
 

Advice pls on estimating yardage

Post by Stephen Jone » Fri, 11 Oct 1996 04:00:00


Quote:


> > Does anyone out there have a good method of estimating the amount of
> > fabric/yardage you need to buy once you've designed the quilt?

  I will have to do some digging, but I actually found a book awhile
 back that tells you how much fabric to get(rounded up to the next
 measurement to be safe. I keep forgetting I have it because I've
 mainly been doing s***quilts WITH MUSLIN ;) and have not need to
 know exact measurements. I don't know if the book is still in print
 but I'll try to find it before I leave on vacation tomorrow (a whole
 week away from this group! What shall I do?.....quilt,shop,sleep,
quilt,shop,quilt,shop........)
   If it turns out it is out of print sometimes you can go to a used
book store and they will do a search for you.

    Melissa J

 
 
 

Advice pls on estimating yardage

Post by Stephen Jone » Fri, 11 Oct 1996 04:00:00


   I will have to do some digging, but I actually found a book awhile

Quote:
>  back that tells you how much fabric to get(rounded up to the next
>  measurement to be safe.

>     Melissa J

   I CAN'T BELIEVE IT!!!! I actually walked right over to the area
 where I last remembered seeing it and THERE IT WAS!!! Mark your
 calendars,girls(oops,we have guys now too,sorry)

   The book is: Quilters Precise Yardage Guide by Carol Ann Waugh
 and Judith LaBelle  1983  ISBN 0=8329-0275-6
  New Century Publishers,Inc.
  220 Old New Brunswick Road
  Piscataway,New Jersey 08854

  It only has yards and inches - no metrics.

 I just read the introduction and it said all the charts were
 generated using an Ataru home computer program written by Anthony
 J Capato. Can you even find these things anymore? Don't think so.
 The address for the program at that time was
                   Dekotek,Inc.
                   PO Box 1863
                   Grand Central Station
                   New York, NY 10017
 I doubt this address is still viable, but it's worth a try if
 nothing else shows up.Perhaps the book or program have been updated
 in other forms.

     Melissa J

 
 
 

Advice pls on estimating yardage

Post by Denise Brow » Fri, 11 Oct 1996 04:00:00


Quote:

> Does anyone out there have a good method of estimating the amount of
> fabric/yardage you need to buy once you've designed the quilt? (of course

If it's still in print get the book "Taking the Math Out of Patchwork Quilts"
by Bonnie Leman and Judy Martin.  Another is "Quilters Pocket Guide to Buying
Fabric" (I think)  they are full of charts for various shapes, backings, quilts,
etc.  I usually do the math and add enough for stash and mistakes.

Quote:
> I thought about using a percentage method (meaning if red takes up 10
> percent of the block then it should take up 10 percent of the total quilt
> area). I haven't tried that yet. Does anyone do that?

I'll guestimate for applique.  Don't forget though that the more pieces per
block, the more fabric it takes to make -- lots of seam allowances accumulate
yardage.

Quote:

> Any suggestions would be appreciated.

> Sonja
> Toronto

When all else fails, bring your design to your quilt shop and ask them to
help calculate the yardage.  Add a bit for safety.  If they won't help with
yardage, find another quilt shop.

Denise

 
 
 

Advice pls on estimating yardage

Post by Ruth Eva » Fri, 11 Oct 1996 04:00:00


When I have designed a quilt, I always sit down and figure out color by color
how many different size blocks I need.  Then I develop a cutting plan so that
I know exactly how much fabric I need.  If I use a lot of small pieces of the
color (smaller pieces seam to take more fabric than you anticipate because of
all their seams!) I buy 1 extra yard of that material.  Otherwise I tend to
buy 1/2 yard extra.  Then invariably, I have to go back and get more because I
forget the binding...almost EVERY time!

Ruth
     __             ___        __

\\\//// '\/    \/ / /\/ '\\\\///  | Princess:  Cutest Wiggle Tail Ever!     |
 \xx/ \/\/\/\/\/\/\__/\/\/ \xx/   | Anne McCaffrey:  Master Word Crafter   |

 
 
 

Advice pls on estimating yardage

Post by Jane Greave » Fri, 11 Oct 1996 04:00:00


Quote:

> Does anyone out there have a good method of estimating the amount of
> fabric/yardage you need to buy once you've designed the quilt? (of course
> in Canada we would use metres tho' I don't think "metrage" is a word).
> (snip)
> I thought about using a percentage method (meaning if red takes up 10
> percent of the block then it should take up 10 percent of the total quilt
> area). I haven't tried that yet. Does anyone do that?

Hi Sonja,

yes, I've seen the percentage method recommended, in a couple of books.
One is the Singer book called Quilting by Machine. They say, for a
comforter-length quilt for a full-size bed, you need a total of 10-12
yards of fabric (or 9-11 metres). Then just divide it proportionally
for all the fabrics you plan to use. (Or the colours if you're making a
s***quilt, I suppose.)

Hope this helps!
Jane G.

 
 
 

Advice pls on estimating yardage

Post by COTTON COMFORT » Sat, 12 Oct 1996 04:00:00


Quote:

> > Does anyone out there have a good method of estimating the amount of
> > fabric/yardage you need to buy once you've designed the quilt?

For the amount of time you may spend estimating yardage by hand, you might
want to consider investing in a program such as Electric Quilt, in which
you could design your quilt and let IT figure the yardage for you.  I find
it to be much easier, and well worth the cost.

Margo

 
 
 

Advice pls on estimating yardage

Post by JQui » Sat, 12 Oct 1996 04:00:00


Maybe one way to estimate would be to....
cut 1/4 yards of a fabric from your stash and use them to make one block
of your quilt and then you will know how much of the 1/4 yard it took to
make the block..  then multiply it by the number of blocks that you need
to make the whole quilt for instance:
if you could make 3 blocks out of 1/4 yard and you needed 30 block  you
will need 10 1/4 yards or 2 1/2 yards of fabric.
Because I too design my own... I invested in an EQ program,  that will
estimate the yardage required for a quilt of my design.
Hope this helps.
Jean

 
 
 

Advice pls on estimating yardage

Post by COTTON COMFORT » Sat, 12 Oct 1996 04:00:00



Quote:
> When all else fails, bring your design to your quilt shop and ask them to
> help calculate the yardage.  Add a bit for safety.  If they won't help
with
> yardage, find another quilt shop.

> Denise

Most of the quilt store employees that I have met are quilt and fabric
***s like the rest of us, who found a great job to supplement their
fabric stash... so why should we expect them to figure out the yardages for
our quilt?  Quilt store employees are usually great people, but I don't
think we should put them on the spot to solve every single problem that
arrises.  Furthermore, if they don't know the answer, or lack the expertise
to help with a problem... we shouldn't just "find another quilt shop."  I
think, that if a quilter is busy designing his/her own quilts, it would be
very worthwhile for him/her to invest in a computer program that will
calculate yardages!

Just my .02  -Margo

 
 
 

Advice pls on estimating yardage

Post by Nancy Wals » Sat, 12 Oct 1996 04:00:00


Quote:
> Does anyone out there have a good method of estimating the amount of
> fabric/yardage you need to buy once you've designed the quilt? (of course

There are some books that supposedly help with this - I've never been able to
understand them and re-do it anyway.  Here's what I do:

1. Figure out the basic block (Sounds like you've done this)
2. How many blocks in the quilt?
3. What shapes are what colors in the block?
   ie 3 red squares/block that are 2"x2" each
      4 blue squares that are 4"x4"
4. Multiply the number of blocks by the number of types in each block.
   ie 3x30 equals 60 2" squares.
5. Figure out how many of that shape fit in 40" wide of usable fabric.  for 2"
squares that would be 40"/2" = 20 squares with a width of 2".
6. Divide total number of shape needed by # that fits in 40".  60 total/20 sq
   would mean I'd need 3 strips of 2" wide - 3 strips x 2" = 6" of fabric.

Repeat 4,5,6 for each different shape/fabric combination.  A lot of my quilts I
do are 1/2square triangle oriented which makes it easier.  Always buy at least
1/2 yard extra.  Don't forget to count borders if any.  For background buy at
least 1 yard over what you think you need. Always round up, and you'll never (or
rarely) run out.

Hope this helps - I know it seems convoluted, but I'm used to it now, and can
figure out yardage requirements in about 10 minutes now.  (I often est different
sizes of finished quilts at one time so I can sometimes use on-hand fabric).

-Nancy
--

 
 
 

Advice pls on estimating yardage

Post by mim holm » Sat, 12 Oct 1996 04:00:00


Is  this a computer program you mentioned, Electric Quilt?  To help design quilts?

Mim

Opinions expressed herein are my own and may not represent those of my employer.

 
 
 

Advice pls on estimating yardage

Post by jj, curmudgeon and all-around grou » Sat, 12 Oct 1996 04:00:00


Quote:

>Does anyone out there have a good method of estimating the amount of
>fabric/yardage you need to buy once you've designed the quilt?

Yes.

Approximately 1/8 yard more than you bought. :-)

But that's why we all buy much more than we need, and have all
those nice fabric stashes, you know. :-)

On a serious note, it's a hard thing to calculuate. Figure you
will get about 40" useful at most from a 42" fabric, and so on,
and then draw your cutting method, and find out how many peices
per strip, or whatever repeating element you can manage.  Be sure
to consider pattern vs. grain vs. design as well.

No, not a very concise statement. I suspect there is no general
rule worth much.
--
Copyright alice!jj 1996, all rights reserved, except transmission by USENET
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Advice pls on estimating yardage

Post by Denise Brow » Sun, 13 Oct 1996 04:00:00


Quote:


> > When all else fails, bring your design to your quilt shop and ask them to

> > help calculate the yardage.  Add a bit for safety.  If they won't help
> with
> > yardage, find another quilt shop.

> > Denise

> Most of the quilt store employees that I have met are quilt and fabric
> ***s like the rest of us, who found a great job to supplement their
> fabric stash... so why should we expect them to figure out the yardages for
> our quilt?  Quilt store employees are usually great people, but I don't
> think we should put them on the spot to solve every single problem that
> arrises.  Furthermore, if they don't know the answer, or lack the expertise
> to help with a problem... we shouldn't just "find another quilt shop."
> Just my .02  -Margo

Calculating yardage for a customer is part of the job description at the quilt
shop where I work.  The customer has the last word about how much to cut, but we
are there to make the customer as happy with her yardage as possible.  We don't
like having to tell a customer "Sorry we haven't had that fabric for a while" when
she comes back and says, "I need 3 more 2 1/2" squares".

All the craft shops I like will help calculate materials needed whether it's yarn,
fabric or whatever.

Denise