How to Make A Puff Quilt

There's something comforting about a puff quilt. Maybe it's the little pillows that make up the top that attract us to them. Maybe it's the extra layer of stuffing that makes them so soft and fun to curl up in. Whatever the reason, you can enjoy making one of your very own.

Puff Quilts are very easy to make. You construct "puffs" or "biscuits" of fabric squares, one at a time, and then join them together to make a whole. Usually no added backing or finish quilting is required.

A good size for each puff is between 3 and 6 inches square. For uniformity, select a "backing" fabric to use as one side of each puff. You will also need a lot of cotton or poly fiberfill, or leftover scraps of batting to use as stuffing.

The simplest method for making a puff quilt is to take two squares of the same size, place them with their right sides together, and sew around the edges as if you were making a little pillow - because that is exactly what you are doing. The pieces don't even have to be squares. You can use rectangles or circles if you want. Then, turn the puff inside out, stuff it loosely, and whipstich the open edge. You now have your first puff! Make a few hundred more puffs, and whipstitch them together along their edges to make the top. Arrange them in checkerboard style, in concentric rings of color, or in a random pattern.

The second method is a little more involved. You still cut two squares for each puff, but with this method you make one about 1.5 inches larger than the other. Place them with their right sides together, with the larger square on top. Gather the edges of the larger square and pin them in place over the smaller square so that the two can be sewn together. You will need to take pleats in each side in order to take up the extra 1.5 inches. Two pleats are probably enough, and you should make them near the middle of the square. This method gives you a little more volume to puff up when it is completed. Sew around the edges and leave an opening for turning it right side out. It might help to sew up one pleat on the open side, because sewing two shut by hand can be a bit tricky. Stuff your biscuit and form any remaining fabric into the second pleat. Sew shut by hand. You will have a thicker puff with a flat bottom. Join the puffs to each other with whipstitching.

For a more finished look, try adding a backing layer to the puff quilt. If you do this you will need to add a binding and either quilt along the lines between the puffs, or tie off each corner to hold the backing on. It is not necessary to add another layer of batting under the puffs.


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