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care home quilt

Do you have a loved one in a care or nursing home? Why not make them a quilt that they can snuggle under. This one has been made with fabric remnants and an old sheet, or you could use shirts or cotton items of clothings that you no longer wear.

what you need for a care home quilt


  • fabric for the top of the quilt

  • wadding

  • backing fabric (an old sheet is ideal)

  • sewing machine and thread

  • scissors

  • ruler/tape measure

  • iron


The first thing you need to do is decide the size of the quilt. I measured the mattress on the care home bed and added extra on the width measurement. This will allow for the quilt to be tucked in at the sides. This is a personal choice and will be different for everyone. I made it a little bit shorter than the length of the mattress as I didn't want it to come up too high, but again you can choose to make it the size you want.

The next thing to do is decide how big you want the squares. I cut mine 8 inches square and folded the fabric in half before ironing so I could cut two at a time.

cutting squares

Cut out all the squares and lay them in your chosen order, on the floor. Take a picture and look at it on your phone or camera. This will highlight any squares that look out of place. Have a play with the squares until you find the layout you want.

selecting a fabric layout

Once happy with the layout, select the bottom row of squares from left to right.

joining squares in rows

Place the first square right side facing up and add the second square right side down on top. Pin or clip in place and then join together with a ¼inch seam.

sewing a seam

Join the next square in the row sequence, right sides together, with the last added square.

pinning fabric together

Continue adding squares in order until you have sewn the whole row.

joining quilt rows

Create the other rows in the same way, placing them in order as they are completed.

creating a topper

Iron all the back seams open. This will help the panel to lay nice and flat.

pressing back seams open

The next part is optional, but does have a couple of benefits. It will keep the back seam in place and give the quilt a professional look. Top stitch both sides of all the seams along the rows.

topstitching a quilt

The rows are now sewn together. Join the top edge of the bottom row of squares to the bottom edge of the row above in the sequence. Pin or clip the raw edges before stitching, making sure you line up each of the seams along the row. As you sew let the machine do the work and keep checking that the seams are lined up, as you go.

joining a quilt

Continue joining the rows in order until you have sewn them all.

Give the panel a good press.

ironing a quilt

To create the quilt you will need three layers.

Top layer - patchwork topper

Middle layer - wadding

Bottom layer - backing fabric

The wadding and backing fabric should be slightly larger than the squared top layer.

quilt layers

With the backing material wrong side facing up, place a layer of wadding centrally on top. I like to use a fabric spray adhesive for this part. Then lay the squared topper right side facing up, centrally on top of these two layers. Again I like to use a fabric spray adhesive, but you could use long tacking stitches or pins to hold all three layers together.

The layers are now quilted together. Increase the stitch length on the machine to allow the layers move freely and quilt them together. Start from the centre and work outwards to the edges each side. You may need to adjust the pins or stitches if the layers move.

I roll the quilt up when stitching so that it goes through the throat of the machine easier.

creating a quilt

Once all the quilting has been done, sew long stitches within the seam allowance round the outer edges of the quilt.

sewing round the edge of a quilt

Trim away the excess wadding and backing fabric.

trimming away excess wadding

To neaten the edges and finish the quilt, binding is added to the outer edge.

Join 2½ inch strips of fabric together to create one long 2½ inch strip that goes round the outer edge of the quilt, with a little bit extra for joining. Press the strip in half wrong sides together and pin or clip the raw edges of the binding to the raw edge of the quilt.

adding binding to a quilt

Add the binding all the way round the edge. Press it over to the back of the quilt and hand sew on the reverse side to finish.

a finished quilt

You have now created a beautiful quilt that will be enjoyed and cherished for many years to come.

Happy Sewing!

The Crafty Co



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