March 23, 2020

Pastel Rainbow Quilt Tutorial

Quilty friends! It's been a while since I've been in this space. The world has changed a lot! It actually hasn't changed too much around these parts, and to be honest the changes have all been good. We love having "home school", we love having dad home, and we love spending lots of time together at home. Can you tell I love home? We feel extremely lucky to have the luxury of being home and safe.

That's not to say that we aren't very concerned. I've got 4 sisters having babies in the next few months (I know! It's some kind of record!) and that makes me so anxious, and my parents are currently living in a country where the healthcare is iffy at best. We also have a kiddo with asthma that flares up like crazy when he gets respiratory sicknesses. So it's not all sunshine and roses, but we are being extremely careful and looking for the positive in this very interesting time. I pray that you are all well- physically, emotionally, financially, and spiritually.

Let's not linger on that too much since it's all we ever hear these days. Let's talk about springy quilts! Many of you probably have more time to sew now, hooray!

(This post may contain affiliate links, which means I may receive a commission, at no extra cost to you, if you click a link and purchase something that I have recommended. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.)

This is part 3 in a free rainbow quilt series I've done for the last couple of years, it has become a springtime tradition. First there was the Muted Rainbow quilt (twin size), then the Bright Rainbow Remix with two kinds of baby quilts from the same cuts as the first one. Those two are interchangeable as far as bundles go. This time we're doing pastels, but reducing the number of colors and moving the cut size up to half yards. Ready?

Fabric Requirements:
9 half yards colors*
1 1/4 yds white fabric
2 1/2 yds wideback backing, or 7 1/4 yds regular
5/8 yds binding fabric

Makes a 78" x 92" quilt, or generous twin size.

(I used Riley Blake Confetti Cottons in Peaches and Cream, Mango Tango, Honeysuckle, Sunshine, Celery, Peridot, Songbird, Sky, and Wisteria.)

First, cut your background fabric to (17) 2.5" strips. Sew them end to end, trim the selvages, and press the seams, doesn't matter which way. Try to keep your loooong strip in an orderly back and forth pile as you press it so it doesn't get to wrinkly and tangled. Here's mine before I clipped the threads from chain piecing. Be careful that you're sewing the right sides together and not twisting it! 

Next, cut your color half yards to (2) 9" x WOF strips each. Trim the selvages on one side of each, and sew together with a 1/4" seam (always in this project) and press. Again, doesn't matter which way. Do this for each of your 9 colors.

From here, I trimmed my color strips to 78" wide so that my quilt would be an official twin size. You can just trim the selvages if you want to use all the fabric and have an even wider/bigger quilt! (You'll need a little extra white, binding, and backing if you do that.)

Now, sew a white sashing strip to the top of each color. You can chain piece all of it, and then trim up the white on the edges afterward. Press away from the white.

TIP! With so few seams on this quilt, it's easy to get the "right sides"mixed up. You can see above that on the dark pink and aqua- I accidentally sewed the white to the side with seams on my first try, and had to unpick. This probably wouldn't have happened if I wasn't trying to time myself and make the whole thing in 1 hour while my kids were at a playdate :)

I also learned making this quilt that not all solids have a right side and a wrong side, but some do. I'm no expert, but from experience I'd say that Kona solids work either way, but Riley Blake Confetti Cottons have different sides. You can tell on my orange strip that there is a slight difference on either side of the seam, though it's from the same cut. So proceed with caution!

If you've been following on Instagram, you know that I drew a garden scene on the wall in this room. You can check that out in the "Flower Wall" highlight on IG for more details. Also, if you're wondering where I got the bed frame, pillows, nightstand, paint pens for the wall, or polka dot sheets, you can find them linked in my Amazon store. Just scroll down and click on "Guest Room". Everything else is from IKEA (lamp, shelf, clock, glass box, plants), or I don't know because I've had it for so long :)

Alright, continuing on! You can probably guess from here, it's not too tricky. Sew the strips with their white sashing in order and press toward the white again. Trim up the sides, and you're ready for quilting!

Now for the very exciting part for me! I loaded this baby on to my new (very old, used) longarm and went to town with flowers and leaves and swirls. It was so much fun! And also took a very long time. My longarm is not automated so it's all done "by hand", moving the needle around free motion, kind of like drawing with thread. This is the 4th quilt I've tried on it and I still make mistakes! But it's so much fun to learn, and exciting that I can finish big quilts at home, especially without basting! :)

I used Chasing Rainbows by Andie Hanna for binding. Don't get mad at me if that link runs out of stock, there isn't much left of this on the internet!

Don't you want to just hop into this photo for a nap? So glorious.

Thank you for stopping by today. I hope you are well and safe.

Note: I am not able to respond to blog comments for some reason, so use the Blogger contact form, email me, or hop over to Instagram if you have any questions! Thanks!


  1. Just beautiful..i am sure to make this. .Thankyou

  2. Very pretty I'm going to make it for my granddaughter that has moved and now has a big girl room and wants a rainbow bedroom.Those dimensions are enough to make a full size quilt right.74x95 just add 1/2" to depth of each color.Am I thinking right .Thank you again