Make a Carefree Curves Sailing Quilt

Sailing Quilt Nancy Zieman Cover

Make a Carefree Curves Sailing Quilt

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Sailing Quilt Nancy Zieman CoverNautical-themed nursery? No problem. Lake or beach house wall hanging? No problem. Here’s an easy quilting tutorial that details how to sew a water-loving quilt project in just a few hours. Designed by Nancy Zieman’s friend Carol Porter, Education Director for Clover Needlecraft, Inc. The quilt is called Carefree Curves Sailing Quilt—the design made Nancy smile!

The quilting project finishes at 24″ x 32″, a great wall hanging size. With the Carefree Curves Template set and No-Hassle Triangles Gauge, the construction method can easily be adapted to any size. Take a look at how the quilt was created, making two different sections: machine pieced sailboats and machine appliquéd rings.

Supplies, Notions, and Fabric

Create the Sailboats

For each of the three boats, cut the following pieces:

  • Cut two 2-7/8″ squares: one blue water background and one foreground (for smaller half-square triangles used on the boat).
  • Cut two 4-7/8″ squares: one white background and one foreground (for larger half-square triangles used as the boat’s sail).
  • Cut two  2-1/2″ x 4-1/2″ background rectangles.
  • Cut one 2-1/2″ x 4-1/2″ foreground rectangle (used on the boat).
  • Layer one background fabric onto one foreground fabric square, matching right sides.
  • Using the No-Hassle Triangle Gauge, carefully mark a diagonal line on each pair of squares.
Sailing Quilt Nancy Zieman Boats11Sailing Quilt Nancy Zieman Boats2
  • Straight stitch a scant 1/4″ from each marked line.

Sailing Quilt Nancy Zieman Boats3

  • Cut along the center marked line.
  • Open each set of half-square triangles.
  • Press seam allowances in one direction, towards the darker fabric.
Note From Team Nancy A leftover larger half-square triangle will be created for each boat color-way. Save this extra piece to incorporate into the quilt back or into a future scrap quilt project.

Sailing Quilt Nancy Zieman Boats4

  • Arrange the boat block by adding in the remaining cut rectangles.

Sailing Quilt Nancy Zieman Boats5

  • Use 1/4″ seam allowances to join the pieces and create the sailboat.
  • Repeat for the remaining two boats.

Sailing Quilt Nancy Zieman Boats6

  •  Join the three boat blocks to form the lower row of the quilt.

Create the Rings

  • Cut eight 2-1/4″ x 11″ strips from the remaining fabric scraps or fat quarters.
  • Use the Carefree Curves Template Wagon Wheel to trace wedge shapes and curves with a non-permanent pen onto the wrong side of the fabric strips.
  • Use eight wedges per ring. This quilt requires a total of 32 wedges.

Sailing Quilt Nancy Zieman Rings1

Sailing Quilt Nancy Zieman Rings2
  • Cut the wedges using a rotary cutter, mat, and ruler.

Sailing Quilt Nancy Zieman Rings3

  • Arrange the fabric wedges into a circle.

Sailing Quilt Nancy Zieman Rings4

  • Join the wedges using  1/4″ seam allowances, along the diagonal edges.

Sailing Quilt Nancy Zieman Rings5

  • Press seam allowances open.

Sailing Quilt Nancy Zieman Rings6

  • Pin the ring to lightweight fusible interfacing, right sides together.
  • Use a straight stitch to sew 1/4″ from the outer edge, curving stitching gently at each seam.

Sailing Quilt Nancy Zieman Rings7

  • Use a rotary cutter with a pinking blade to remove the excess fabric, as shown.
Sailing Quilt Nancy Zieman Rings8
  • Carefully remove the interfacing from the center, leaving roughly 1″.

Sailing Quilt Nancy Zieman Rings9

Sailing Quilt Nancy Zieman Rings9a

  • Press.
Sailing Quilt Nancy Zieman Rings9b
  • A 7″ circle is needed to create the inner ring. Cut four 8″ squares of background fabric and four 8″ squares of lightweight fusible interfacingNancy Zieman How to Make a Sailboat Quilt
  • Lay the background fabric onto fusible interfacing, right sides together. Trace a 7″ plate on the wrong side of the background fabric. Or use a Yardstick Compass and set the distance between the points at 3-1/2″ (half of 7″).  Nancy Zieman Shows How to Make a Sailboat Quilt
  • Sew along the marked line and use a rotary cutter with a pinking blade to remove the excess fabric.Nancy Zieman Shows How to Make a Sailboat Quilt
  • Trim the interfacing from the center, leaving roughly 1″. Nancy Zieman Shows How to Make a Sailboat Quilt
  • Turn the background circle right side out using a turning tool, such as the Point TurnerNancy Zieman Shows How to Make a Sailboat Quilt
  • Press. Nancy Zieman Shows How to Make a Sailboat Quilt
  • Use a straight stitch to machine appliqué the background circle over the ring center, concealing the cut edges.
Sailing Quilt Nancy Zieman Rings9c
  • Each ring will finish at 11″ in diameter.

Create the Quilt

Note From Team Nancy With the size of this small wall hanging, you have several options for the background fabric. Choose to simply cut a square 24-1/2″ x 24-1/2″ and evenly distribute the ring shapes for machine appliqué. Or, you can do as we did. Cut four squares each measuring 12-1/2″ x 12-1/2″. Using the individual blocks allows you to accurately center each ring.

  • Cut background fabric.
  • Arrange the rings.
  • Edgestitch around each shape. Press.
  • Join the row of sailboats to the lower edge.
Sailing Quilt Nancy Zieman Cover

Create Any Size Quilt

Using the Carefree Curves Templates and the easy-to-follow techniques, you can create this quilt in a variety of designs. The key to remember is: Two ring blocks fit above three sailboat blocks. In this digital sample below, I’ve simply eliminated a row of rings and added horizontal borders. The possibilities are endless.

Thank you to Carol for this lovely Carefree Curves Sailing quilt. Carol’s quilting talents are impressive!

Watch Carefree Curves (Part One and Part Two) on The Best of Sewing With Nancy online.

The Best of Sewing With Nancy TV Show hosted by Nancy Zieman

Screen Shot 2019 05 22 at 3.49.43 PM


Nancys Giveaway 5 1312For a chance to win a Carefree Curves Template Set from Clover, make a comment below telling us who you might make this Carefree Curves Sailing Quilt for.

trace n create quilt templates carefree curves collection

Giveaway Winner 5 131

The randomly selected winner of Nancy Zieman’s New! Afternoon Picnic Fat Quarter Pack from the May 18 blog post is Pat.

FQ 7630 19 media 1

Her comment is: I just love the May basket block. The Afternoon Picnic fabrics selected really make the basket pop. Thanks so much for the clear instructions on block construction. Nancy’s legacy lives on through projects like this.

Happy Quilting,

Team Nancy Zieman

Nancy Zieman Productions, LLC.

Nancy Zieman Productions, LLC

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  • Sharon
    May 25, 2019

    I haven’t decided yet who I might make a quilt like this for.

  • Deborah Hunsaker
    May 25, 2019

    I have a local charity that I make quilts for sometimes. The quilts go to homeless and people who are working poor, who can’t afford blankets.

  • Betty Manoulian
    May 25, 2019

    I purchased the template set quite a while ago after watching Nancy make a quilt. This Sailing Quilt will be fun to make. Thanks to the Zieman team for keeping Nancy’s work going onward. There was a reason her show was so long-running.

  • Anita Phelps
    May 25, 2019

    I have grandsons who I think would enjoy this for their “big boy” beds when they get them.

  • Barb K
    May 25, 2019

    I would make this for a future baby gift–what a cute pattern!!

  • Clovis
    May 25, 2019

    This would be good for a person that likes to fish.

  • Karen Gulotta
    May 25, 2019

    What a cheerful, colorful quilt. It would be perfect for a little boy or girl who enjoys the beach. In winter, it would be a great reminder of summer, swimming, and sun!

  • Rebecca
    May 25, 2019

    This quilt and the great directions couldn’t have come at a better time! I recently found out a former student will be having her first baby in August and the nursery is in a nautical theme. This quilt will be fitting right in with those sailboats and the bright colors. I can see why this quilt made Nancy smile! Thank you so much for showcasing this quilt in this particular blog!

  • Teresa Williams
    May 25, 2019

    I love this. I think I will make a quilt for my grandson for Christmas.

  • Linda H
    May 25, 2019

    What a cute pattern. Love the bright colors. This would make a great baby gift.

  • DebbieW
    May 25, 2019

    I would want to make this Carefree Curves Sailing Quilt for a child whose parent, grandparent, guardian or friend would find it special for a treasured present, to let them know that they are being thought of lovingly, always.

  • Ann West
    May 25, 2019

    This is such a fun quilt! I believe I know many children and adults alike who would like to receive the Carefree Curves Sailing Quilt.

  • Linda
    May 25, 2019

    What a great tool – and a great tip for sewing curves. I know a little boy who loves the water and to fish, and would love to have this on the wall of his room.

  • Marilyn Dunstan
    May 25, 2019

    I have a 3 month old great grandson and two more greats on the way. I could use this ruler many times. And the results are so cute. Thank you for the chance to win the template.

  • Sharon Soloway
    May 25, 2019

    What a cheerful quilt for a child’s room. I will be making this for my first grandson, now 3 months old. He has a t-shirt that reads, “Pack my diapers. I’m going fishing with Dad.” This quilt is so perfect. Thankyou.

  • MaryEllen
    May 25, 2019

    I have some beach and sailing fabric that would be perfect for these templates. Curves are not something that I have tried but the templates seem to make it an easy project and I’m willing to try it.

  • Lily Kamikihara
    May 25, 2019

    What a wonderfully adorable quilt. Gonna be a first grandma this month and this quilt would be great! thanks for showing us how to make it.

  • Teri
    May 25, 2019

    I’d love to make this for my grandson.

  • Lillian K
    May 25, 2019

    Looks like a fun quilt to make for my young grandson.
    I like the templates that are used.

  • Anne Z
    May 25, 2019

    This would make a great gift. for a baby.

  • BevM
    May 25, 2019

    I would love to make this Sailing Quilt for friends who have a lovely wooden 32 foot sailboat that they sailed from Lake Michigan to Florida.

  • Judy allen
    May 25, 2019

    I’d make the sailboat quilt for our yacht club’s Make-a-Wish fundraiser. We have raised about $500,00 for this wonderful cause over the years.

  • Kathryn
    May 25, 2019

    I would love to make this carefree curves quilt for my sister-in-law. She loves sailing.

  • Mary Green
    May 25, 2019

    I would love to make the wall hanging for my family’s cabin at Blue Lake, just north of Minneapolis, MN. We’d been going there since we were teens, many decades ago. Besides a sailboat, there’s a speedboat, pontoon boat, a paddle board and a paddle boat. Lots of fun in the sun for kids of all ages.

  • Dixie
    May 25, 2019

    I would make this for my great grandson.

  • Jackie
    May 25, 2019

    Will let me think . . . so many possiblities to share the quilt with….My mom. Thank you Ms. Nancy for sharing your sewing knowledge kand everything esle including your paintings!) with us

  • Jeanne Creel
    May 25, 2019

    My 2 year old great grandson would love this for his big boy bed which he will be getting into soon.

  • Carol Netzler
    May 25, 2019

    This would be a great quilt or wall hanging for someone’s lake cabin.

  • Gail Beam
    May 26, 2019

    I can’t decide who I would make this awesome quilt for. Thanks for the chance to win this fabulous carefree curves template.

  • L Watson
    May 26, 2019

    Chances are it would be for my grandchildren. The template set looks so nice!

  • Lorraine Alves
    May 27, 2019

    My great nieces and nephews have a pond in their yard. Both of the younger children love making paper boats and setting them to sail on the pond. I’d love to vary the color of the prints to match the decorations in their bedrooms.

  • Bonnie
    May 27, 2019

    I would make this Sailing Quilt for my niece, who loves the water. Thanks for sharing this great tutorial.

  • Hannah W
    May 27, 2019

    I’ve got a great nephew on the way who needs something homemade:)

  • Jennifer Reinke
    May 28, 2019

    I would love to make this for “Myself”! This would be perfect for our new home and on the hanging quilt rack my Uncle made for me using the wood from our lot (Black Walnut) Thank you for the inspiration

  • beth d.
    May 28, 2019

    I am expecting a new great nephew in the future. He would probably love this quilt.

  • DeAnna S
    May 29, 2019

    Just adorable! Perfect for a grand niece and nephew or two and a couple of adult in laws. Lots of color options to suit the recipients.

  • Susan
    May 30, 2019

    Have 2 grandsons, 5 & 2 and both would be delighted to have a sailboat quilt of their own while they sail off to dreamland!

  • julie kemp
    May 31, 2019

    I am a caretaker for my son who has a wonderful nurse, Shirley, who comes every Monday to change his dressings. I love to sew and would love to make this baby quilt for her new grandchild due in August. I know she will love and appreciate it.

  • Melanie
    June 4, 2019

    I would see the sailboat quilt for my twin grandsons

  • Karen N
    June 5, 2019

    What a fun quilt! I would make this for my soon-to-be born first grandson for his first birthday in memory of Nancy Zieman who has been an inspiration to all of us.

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