Friday, May 4, 2012

Trajectory: Getting Started

This is the first post in a series about how to make my Trajectory Quilt. Enjoy!

To work out this quilt, I first drew my plan out on graph paper and did a whole mess of quilt math.

Since it's basically just the one block, I got bored drawing in the design but you get the idea from the top few rows.

This quilt will be made up of 6.5" blocks (6" finished), and will measure 48" x 48" when completed. You can easily add or subtract blocks to adjust the size of your quilt - just remember to adjust your fabric requirements as well!

First things first. We will be paper-piecing the blocks so we need to gather some supplies. If you have never paper pieced before, this is a VERY simple block and I promise that you can do it!

Gather together an old phone book (or newsprint or foundation piecing papers or even copy paper), a template or ruler that is at least 6.5" on one side, and a mat knife or rotary cutter with an old blade. You'll also want a piece or cardboard or cardstock (an empty cereal box works fine) and a pen or pencil.

For a 48"x48" quilt, we will need 51 pieced blocks. Using your template or ruler cut 51 squares (6.5"x6.5") from the phone book pages. Here's a little trick: I use the corner of the pages to be two of the sides of the square so that I only end up needing to cut two sides. You can cut through several pages at one time.

In no time at all you will have a lovely stack of paper squares! Next, grab your cardstock or cardboard. Cut a 6.5" square out of that as well.

Measure in 1.5" at one corner and make a dot. Then draw lines from the dot to the corners (see above). This is your boomerang shape.

Cut out your boomerang and use the remaining piece as a template to draw the boomerang on each of your 51 paper squares. This may seem very tedious but it only took me about ten minutes, so it's really not that bad. If you have another method of marking that works for you - go for it. This is just how I do it.

Congratulations! You now have a stack of 51 squares that you will use to piece your blocks!

Up next: Fabric requirements and cutting instructions.


  1. Awesome Megan! I might have to play along!

  2. Brilliant -- I've been meaning to have a go at paper piecing, and this seems like the perfect first project. Thanks for the tutorial!

  3. Ok I have my cardboard template made and scrap paper to work on the pieces this weekend. I'm nervous to do paper piecing, but I love this quilt!

  4. Thank you so much for taking the time to share your talent and post this tutorial. I may not get to sew-along right away as I am covered up with outdoor projects in a new house, but I WILL be making this quilt soon! In fact, I have a feeling I will be making 2 :)

  5. Definitely an Oooo and Ahhhh project!

  6. This is awsome! Congratulations on this project :-)

  7. Not there yet, but totally impressed. I'll save it for down the road. It's the kind of quilt that is my ultimate goal.

  8. This quilt is going on my "To Do" list. I luv paper piecing and using a phone book is a clever idea...jpr :)

  9. Nice tut, i will definitely read all of your tutorials to learn this art till extreme :)

  10. Nice tutorial, may I copy to my blog ? thanks


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