Patchwork Quilt made from Vintage Sheets

You may remember a few weeks ago I was finally putting the binding on a patchwork quilt made from vintage sheets. Over the years making quilts with old sheets has been a fun trend. These cheerful retro-prints bring a sweet wave of nostalgia. And the sturdy cotton/poly blend also makes for sturdy quilts.

This quilt has been a WIP (Work In Progress) f o r e v e r – I started ages ago. I cut the squares about 10 years ago and then finally pieced the top over 6 years ago. It’s sat patiently in the UFO (UnFinished Object) pile for years, finally resurfacing in 2019. Then it took me another year to piece a back and another year after that to get it to longarm quilter. 

Patchwork quilt made from vintage sheets and linens

Since that time I have finished hand-stitching the binding and put it through a wash cycle for good measure and to soften it up. This quilt is fast becoming a favorite snuggle quilt.

Patchwork quilt made from vintage sheets and linens  from the 60's and 70's

This quilt is made entirely from vintage sheets – mostly 50/50 cotton/poly blends that were produced in the 1960’s and 70’s.  I found most of the pieces at local thrift stores over the years. These older linens are SO soft after years of washing, but have held up really well because of their polyester content. It’s a pretty sturdy quilt.

Patchwork quilt made from vintage sheets and linens

I love the way all of the bright pastels play together. It’s a wild quilt, but in a harmonious way. I have no idea the number of different prints I incorporated into this quilt. As I say, most were from sheets I found myself at thrift stores, but others were scraps or fat quarters given to me by friends or pieces I found on Etsy – just to give myself a good variety. As much as I love the floral fabulousness of this quilt, I also wanted to add in some stripes, ginghams and plaids (and solids) to create some contrast.

Patchwork quilt made from vintage sheets and linens

For the backing I used a whole sheet with this sweet yellow and green daisy pattern. My grandma had these sheets at her house and they remind me so much for her home and sleepovers we had in her basement. I love the nostalgia.  Does this daisy sheet (or any of the other prints) look familiar to you?

Advice and Best Practices for Sewing with Vintage Sheets

If you want to learn more about how to work with vintage sheets, Jeni Baker has written some really helpful posts about How to Identify, Shop For, and Sew with Vintage Sheets as well as Tips for How to Cut Up a Vintage Sheet.  Jeni has also made lots of projects using her Vintage Sheet collection. She is the pro when it comes to sewing with vintage fabrics and linens.

Sewing on a Binding with a Baby Lock Straight Stitch machine

For the binding on my quilt I used a pale green print from my Sugarhouse Park fabric collection – the color went perfectly as it was also inspired by vintage colors. So, in this case I did mix a 100% cotton fabric as the binding with the rest of the 50/50 blends.

How I made this quilt:

I cut 6″ x 6″ squares for my blocks and laid out the patchwork 12 squares x 17 squares. The finished quilt measures 66″ x 93.5″ – which could also work as a small twin size quilt.

I pieced the squares my self and my friend Monica did an all over stipple design on her longarm machine.

For the binding I used 5/8 yard – cut into 8 strips 2 1/2″ x WOF. I bound the quilt using this method.

Patchwork Quilt made from Vintage Linens and Sheets

Happy this cheerful quilt is done and ready to use. And having finally completed it, I’m feeling some closure with my gathering of thrifted vintage sheets.

Vintage Sheets from 60's and 70's made into a patchwork quilt

So I’ve cut up my remaining pieces into 8 similar bundles and listed them in my Diary of a Quilter Shop. The bundles contain a variety of sizes because I basically cut everything I had left into 8 equal pieces.

Vintage Sheet Fabric Bundles available here

Each bundle contains over 25 different prints in an assortment of sizes ranging from fat quarters to smaller strips and squares. Each piece has been washed and is big enough to cut an assortment of 6″ x 6″ squares. As I mentioned, I only have 8, so once they’re gone, that’s it. You can also find an assortment of vintage sheet fat quarters or even pre-cut squares on Etsy. Or keep an eye out at your own local thrift shops!

I’m also listing these prints from my Sugarhouse Park collection to the shop as they go perfectly with these vintage color palettes. They will be listed in 1/4 yard increments.

Also, just a reminder, this is the last two days of the 25% off all Patterns in my Shop. Use code TIMETOSEW at checkout (only applies to patterns).

Happy October!

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  • Reply
    Michele Pintarch
    October 3, 2021 at 7:37 am

    I had those same daisy sheets in pink and yellow growing up. And my grandmother did too! Love your vintage sheet quilt. Well done.

  • Reply
    October 3, 2021 at 9:05 am

    That is adorable! I am sure you and your family will enjoy the quilt for many years!

  • Reply
    Mary Cardon
    October 3, 2021 at 3:08 pm

    So pretty and soft looking! My grandmother had some very bright and crazy orange flowers and blue flowers…nothing soft and pretty like your quilt. Haha. Isn’t it great to get a WIP done, doesn’t matter how long we’ve had it! Great job!

  • Reply
    October 4, 2021 at 8:26 am

    It’s very pretty. I’ve made a 1/2 dozen or so vintage sheet quilts for my girls, myself and friends. They are always the most cuddly and soft.

  • Reply
    October 4, 2021 at 4:23 pm

    I am totally doing this and visited my local thrift shop today to purchase some sheets! Love the idea! (And also thank you, Amy, for answering my question last week about the Palace Court quilt regarding fabric for the throw size of the minimalist quilt!)

  • Reply
    Cynthia Dickson
    October 5, 2021 at 10:37 pm

    I have been using used sheets for my quilt backs for a few years. I love their softness and beautiful colors. I have even used flannel for those heavier quilts. Super warm.

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