Sew a Carefree Sailing Quilt

Sailing Quilt Nancy Zieman Cover 1

Sew a Carefree Sailing Quilt

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Sailing Quilt Nancy Zieman Cover 1Nautical-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 my friend Carol Porter, Education Director for Clover Needlecraft, Inc. The quilt is called Carefree Curves Sailing Quilt—the design makes me 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 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 2 Point Turner
  • Nancy 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 1

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 Sewing With Nancy online.

Happy Quilting,

Team Nancy Zieman

Nancy Zieman Productions, LLC.

Nancy Zieman Productions, LLC

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  • Randi Grover
    July 11, 2017

    What a cute quilt. I’d make it in typical nautical colors of red white and blue.

  • BevM
    July 11, 2017

    Oh, how cute. I have a good friend who has a sailboat. The boat has cushions in red and blue, so I would feature those colors if I make this nautical quilt for her.

  • Sandra
    July 11, 2017

    Cute! I need to make a baby quilt for someone in Florida. I would use blues and greens with a splash of pink.

  • Barb
    July 11, 2017

    I would use teals and blues for a tropical look.

  • Mary Green
    July 11, 2017

    I like the red white and blues for this cute quilt. Will make one for my sister’s lake cabin. Thanks for the pattern. Great idea for doing that center circle. I never would have thought of that!

  • Tammy Kazmierczak
    July 11, 2017

    Mine would have a blue background to represent the ocean. The boats and life rings would be bright scraps from my Days for Girls reuseable feminine hygiene charity sewing. It would represent how we send these kits of love around the world.

  • Kathy Luehrs
    July 11, 2017

    why red, white and blue of course

  • Mary S
    July 11, 2017

    What better color way than what has already been used, perfect.

  • Nell
    July 11, 2017

    This would look great with an assortment of blue and white prints.

  • Laura
    July 11, 2017

    I’d do the background in a pale sky blue. The rings and boats would be in rainbow colours.

  • Donna Fecteau
    July 11, 2017

    Very cute. I think a nautical wall hanging would be great in red, white and blue as a summer decoration.

  • Cheryl Fabiano
    July 11, 2017

    For a boy I would use Riley Blake’s Sharktown and for a girl, Studio E’s Mermaid Dreams. What a perfect pattern for an excuse to use either of these adorable fabric lines.

  • Robin L. Coxon
    July 11, 2017

    I use an Americana decorating factor for my home so I would use red, white and blue colored fabric with stars and anchor patterned material.

  • Susan Spiers
    July 11, 2017

    So cute-I would use sea blue & emerald green fabrics!

  • DebbieW
    July 11, 2017

    Greens and blues with a sand background for such a sweet quilt.

  • Bonnye
    July 11, 2017

    I would use blue for the ocean and yellow.

  • Clovis
    July 11, 2017

    I would use different blues. Thanks.

  • Pat
    July 11, 2017

    I would use blues, whites and reds for the quilt but lighter hues of the blues and reds; not US flag colors but more like ocean blues and muted reds. Actually the colors shown in the illustrations are excellent. The choice of nautical prints is especially nice. Thanks for the chance to win the template!

  • Mary
    July 11, 2017

    Blues and nautical prints.

  • Gina M
    July 11, 2017

    First, I would pick out a border print to fit the theme and had colors I liked (or were decor appropriate). My palette would be selected to compliment the chosen border print.

  • Anita Phelps
    July 11, 2017

    I think this would be wonderful in bold primary and secondary colors for a baby blanket!

  • Linda
    July 11, 2017

    Your quilt ideals and the give away are great. Thanks Nancy.

  • Debbie Yates
    July 11, 2017

    I love this pattern. I would use navy, medium and aqua blues with a touch of orange/yellow. Very pale blue (rather hard to find) for the background. Maybe orange rick rack tucked in under the binding.

  • Anne Z.
    July 11, 2017

    What a fun summer quilt. I would make it in a variety of blues, reds and white with a splash of yellow to represent the sun.

  • judy
    July 11, 2017

    I would use nautical prints of red, white, and blue.

  • Marty
    July 11, 2017

    Need to make a red, white & blue quilt and this design will be perfect for it!

  • mary johnson
    July 11, 2017

    I would make it in blues, red and greys which are my 8 year old twin grandsons colors

  • Nancy Taylor
    July 11, 2017

    This is really clever! My son & dil have a lake house and it would be a good project to do for them.
    Nancy T

    July 11, 2017

    I would use stars and strips color ways and make it into a veterans quilt. It would be in the colors of red, white and blue.

  • Karen A
    July 11, 2017

    I like the colors used by the designer.

  • Doreen Linehan
    July 11, 2017

    I’d use blues, reds & yellows

    • Betty A Pegram
      July 11, 2017

      I have a baby quilt to make. It is for a boy so I’d use blues,red and yellows..I’ll quilt it free motion waves,fish and clouds. Inspiring!

  • Gail Beam
    July 11, 2017

    I would use shades of red, blue, white, and yellow in some cute, fun small print nautical fabrics.

  • Alicia Miehe
    July 11, 2017

    The nautical quilt is so cute and what great quick sewing techniques. I think I would make it from sunny beach type motifs with palm trees, tropical flowers and maybe add pail & shovel pattern pieces (for building sandcastles). I think I will add some batting inside the rings for a 3-D effect. Here is another idea – if you make some of the rings look like portholes then you could frame scenic prints inside the portholes.

  • Florence Dupuis
    July 11, 2017

    I would make this in nautical prints of red whit and blue.

  • Reneé S.
    July 11, 2017

    I would use bright colors similar to a color wheel!

  • Edna Marks
    July 11, 2017

    red, white and blue with maybe a green, in nautical prints if I could find enough different ones.

  • Tana
    July 11, 2017

    Aqua, white, coral, yellow, and green.

  • Carol
    July 11, 2017

    I really like the colors that are shown in the sample.
    They are happy, peppy colors.

  • L Watson
    July 12, 2017

    I really like the colors featured, so that is what I would fashion my quilt after. This is a very cute design, lots of fun!

  • Brenda Ackerman
    July 12, 2017

    I would use a variety of blues, yellows, purples and oranges! The person I am thinking of making this for really loves these colors. Thank you for sharing this tutorial; I love it and it is something I would never have thought of! Such an awesome quilt!

  • Christine M
    July 13, 2017

    I would use my scraps from other children’s quilts I’ve made.

  • Carol Spence
    July 13, 2017

    I would use primary color prints and it would be really, really cute.

  • Joan Long
    July 13, 2017

    I would use all the blue and teal fabric a have collected!

  • Peggy V
    July 16, 2017

    I would use a blue palette. As my father always said if it is blue it is beautiful!!!

  • E. Watson
    July 19, 2017

    This design is super cute! I love the colors!

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