Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Broken Panes Quilt Along - Fabric Prep

We're getting ready for the Broken Panes Quilt Along!

Are you getting excited to start? Are you prepared? That's what the next three quilt along posts will be all about. This is going to be so much fun!

Before the quilt along starts you need to get Broken Panes:

Etsy Digital

Etsy Printed

Payhip Digital

Fabric choice

I chose to use Big Bang from Northcott.

For Broken Panes you will need a background choice and five colors. I chose to use a different fabric for the border and binding, so I am using seven colors total. Here are the fabric requirements. I'm making the 57" square. Navy is my "red" and yellow is my "blue."

If you want to change the color placement, or color completely, it's really easy to do so in the pattern. It's up to you if you want to find a focal fabric that you want to work off of, or the perfect background, first.

You can also decide to do a dark background and then choose light colors for the squares.

Or you could try a two tone color palette. Pretty sure I now need to make one of each of those options.


What about those fabrics that you're not quite sure will give you enough contrast. My favorite tip is to take a picture of the fabrics next to each other and then change that picture to black and white. This will show you if you have enough contrast between the fabrics.

For more thoughts on color you can see this post or this post.

Fabric Prep

You've chosen your fabrics, now what?

Confession. I don't prewash my fabrics UNLESS I'm working with a red in a quilt that I will give away for someone else to wash and care for. Otherwise, I wait until the quilt is quilted and bound before washing.

This is a completely personal choice. You will find many quilters with very strong opinions on whether to wash or not. I choose not to, and I only tell you because some will ask or wonder, but if you are more comfortable washing first, please do so.

Now give your fabrics a good press. I starch all the things. Really. Before I cut anything, even strips that will just be sewn as strips, I starch. I use Best Press, but again, this is one of those personal choices. Note: If you do starch, you want to starch before cutting, because it will cause your fabric to shrink just a bit.

You don't need to starch, you don't need to buy the expensive starch, but you DO need to press. If you aren't using starch, get the tough creases out with a spritz of water. (Shhhh, I also NEVER steam.) Pressing now, and folding nicely, will mean less pressing when we get started on June 4th.

You'll want to fold with the selvages straight. Take a peek at this video to see how to prep your fabric so the grain line is straight for straight cuts when we start.

Next week we will talk needles and rotary cutters!

Don't forget your Broken Panes pattern:

Etsy Digital

Etsy Printed

Payhip Digital

Happy Stitching!

New to Patterns By Jen?

Find paper and digital patterns in my Etsy shop.

Find fun PBJ merchandise at Teespring

Join the Quilt and Learn with Patterns By Jen Facebook page.

Follow me on Instagram and Facebook for daily sneak peeks and updates. 


  1. Have a pattern. So glad I have that first. You have given so many ideas for colours that I'm going to give that a bit of thought before buying.

  2. I purchased the pattern on your Etsy site but cannot download it for some reason. I have had this problem before. Can you email me the pattern ? My email is redyankee45@hotmail.com. Thank you

  3. I pre-wash fabrics because I want the shrinkage to be on the front end and not be surprised with popped seams at the end. I don't normally starch unless bias edges, but I'll going to starch with the QAL.


I love to get your comments and hear your ideas. I always respond to comments (though it may take me a few days), if you haven't heard from me it might mean you are a no reply commenter. If you haven't heard back from me, check back here, because I will reply to the comment.