FREE Quilt Pattern – A Framed Life

“A Framed Life” Photo Quilt

Finished Quilt Size – Approx. 93” X 115” (Queen)

This is a great gift for a graduate – the quilt is designed to hold 48 pictures, imagine it with pictures of your grad from birth to cap and gown! For the story of how this quilt came to be, and pictures from the quilt made by my daughter using this pattern, see the post A Framed Life.

Materials
24 sheets June Tailor Colorfast Computer Printer Fabric™
1 2/3 yards brown – 1st picture border
3 yards lt. blue – 2nd picture border
3 yards dk. blue – 2nd picture border
1/2 yard 1st border fabric
1 1/3 yard 2nd border fabric
2 1/3 yard 3rd border fabric
3/4 yard Quilt Binding
Batting
Backing Fabric

Suggested Tools
Rotary Cutter
Cutting Mat
12 1/2″ square ruler

  1. Choose 48 images for the quilt – you can repeat pictures if you want, but it’s more fun if you have 48 different images!
  2. Size pictures on computer to 5” square, you should be able to get two pictures on each sheet of printer fabric. Make sure to leave 1/2” between the two pictures so you will be able to have a 1/4” seam allowance around each picture.
  3. Process the pictures onto the fabric according to instructions on the packaging. Cut fabric pictures to 5 1/2” square, leaving the 1/4” (seam allowance) around each side of each picture.
  4. Create the first frame around your each of your pictures following these steps:
    • Cut fabric WOF (width of fabric) 4 strips 5 1/2”
    • Sub-cut these 4 strips into 96 strips 5 1/2” X 1 3/4”
    • Sew to both sides of 48 pictures
    • Each of your picture blocks will now be 8” wide, by 5 1/2” long
    • Cut WOF (width of fabric) 4 strips 8”
    • Sub-cut these 4 strips into 96 strips 8” X 1 3/4”
    • Sew to both top and bottom of pictures
    • You will now have a block that is 8” square
  5. Create the second frame around each of your pictures following these steps
    • Cut WOF from each of the two different blue frame fabrics
      • 4 Strips 8” WOF – Sub cut to 48 8” x 3 3/4”
      • 4 Strips 15” WOF – Sub cut to 48 15” x 3 3/4”
    • NOTE: when you are finished, you will have 96 sub-cuts that are 8” long, and 96 that are 15” long (48 from each of the two blue fabrics)
    • Sew 8” strips to sides of bordered picture
    • NOTE: Sew side borders on first 1/2 of blocks with one fabric and the other 1/2 with second fabric.
    • Sew 15” strips to top and bottom of the picture blocks. If you used fabric A for the side of the frame on a picture, use fabric B for the top of the frame.
    • You will now have 48 blocks that have light blue fabric at the top and bottom, and 48 blocks that have dark blue fabric at the top and bottom.

  6. Using the 12½” square ruler, you will be cutting an 11½” square on the angle as shown with the bold line n the image below. (I find it helpful to put blue masking tape on the ruler for a visual of the 11½”.)
  7. Make sure your block is square on your cutting mat before you lay the square ruler over it. The square should not cut into the brown borders at all, and the corners of the ruler will touch each of the edges of your blue fabrics.
  8. OPTIONAL – When cutting your blocks at an angle, you may want to alternate the rotation of the photos on the blocks (this provides another bit of visual interest and breaks up the pattern slightly). The easy way to do this is to cut two blocks at a time.
    • Lay a block with the dark blue fabric with the photo (right side) face up.
    • Lay a block with the light blue fabric on top of it, with the photo (right side) face down.
    • Cut through both squares at the same time. Your photos will be at different (mirror) angles to one another.
    • If you choose this method, make certain you are consistent. You want all of the blocks with dark blue tops angled one direction, and all of the light blue tops angled the other direction.
  9. Sew the quilt together 6 blocks across by 8 blocks down. (The image of the quilt that follows shows a quilt that was made using the optional step 8.)
  10. Add your quilt borders –
    • 1st border cut 8 strips 2” wide
    • 2nd border cut 9 strips 5” wide
    • 3rd border cut 10 strips 8” wide
    • Binding 10 strips 2 1/2” wide

If you would like a PDF copy of this pattern, click here. But be sure to read the fine print below! Thank you!

Pattern by: Sheila Reinke, 2008
All rights reserved. A copy of this pattern may be made for personal, home use. You may not copy for commercial use without prior written permission. If you are a teacher who wishing to use this pattern for quilting instruction, please contact Sheila Reinke at https://sheilareinke.wordpress.com/

Sheila Reinke, Heart of Sewing
Sheila

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