Learn a unique technique for adding family photos to your quilts to hand down through generations of your family.
I am certainly not the best person to write this particular article, because it isn’t about me or even a project that I created. This story is about a long time fan that created a one of a kind family heirloom quilt.
Through tons of love and time and technology, a daughter put this quilt together to warm and heal the heart of her father who had recently lost his wife.
I thought the quilt was a lovely symbol of love and family and asked if I could share it with all of you. Obviously my wish was granted and I have enough information to give you an idea about how this quilt was put together so that if you are interested, you can put one together for your family.
- Fabrics of your choice
- Family photos
- Quilt batting density of your choice
- Photo scanner
- Printable fabric sheets
- Fons & Porter pieced block letter instructions
You might want to check our article “How to Make a Sampler Quilt” and even take a look through the different block designs and use some of them in your heirloom quilt. There are a whole lot of instructions on how to piece everything together and put the quilt together in the articles in our quilting section.
1. According to our quilt maker, she started by determining what her design would be, how many photos she would need and what fabrics she wanted to use for the quilt.
2. With a layout in mind, use template plastic to cut the shapes out for your non-photo blocks and stitch those together. (Remember, the blocks shouldn’t be any larger than the size available for your photo blocks through your printer.)
3. For the photo blocks, scan your family photos into your computer. It doesn’t matter if they are a little discolored or too small because you can use your computer (yay technology!) to fix just about anything.
Use your photo manager to crop and size the photos, brighten the colors, etc. to make them as bright and clear as you can. Sometimes with older photos you need to take a bit of the yellow out to get back to the original colors.
4. Print the photos onto the printable fabric sheets purchased from your neighborhood fabric store. Follow the instructions on the packaging for specifics on printer settings and dry time.
5. If you plan on adding lettering, you might consider using the guide our quilter used. Her letters were from Fons and Porter’s pieced block lettering instructions.
6. There is even a bit of appliqué and embroidery on this quilt. What a perfect opportunity to make a personal creation using all your talents! You can learn about appliqué by checking out our “Stamp Basket” quilt block article.
Once you have all of your blocks created, you can follow along in the instructions for the Sampler Quilt to put the quilt top together. It will explain how to layer your quilt back, batting and top, how to quilt, and how to bind.
Many thanks to one of our longtime fans for allowing us to share her lovely family heirloom quilt. The quilt is now forever with her father, may he rest peacefully, and the photos will be their memories.