Picket Fences Crib Quilt


Hello again! I’m Angela and I blog over at Cut to Pieces. I am very excited about this baby crib quilt. I had the pleasure of working with Sweetwater’s Hometown fabric and I couldn’t be more in love with it. There is something about this collection that just begs you to snuggle with it. After making this quilt, I want to make Pajama pants in almost every fabric. 😉

Picket Fences is a crib quilt that is a perfect welcome home gift for the newest little one in your life. You can have fun trying to find your own Hometown among the many, many names on the fabric. I found mine! The canvas backing makes for a durable floor play mat, but this also makes a beautiful wall hanging. Either way, this quilt will be well loved by all.

• 3 Charm Packs of Sweetwater’s Hometown
• 1 Jelly Roll of Bella White Solids
• 1/2 yard of fabric for the binding
• 2 yards of Hometown canvas grey dot for the backing
• 2 yards of Hometown canvas town print for the backing

Latest Project

Charm Packs and a Jelly Roll make quick work of piecing this quilt top. The quilt is pieced in vertical columns made up of charms and/or jelly roll strips. Then each vertical row is sewn together to complete the top. A small amount of paper piecing is used to create the tips of the picket fence (but don’t worry if you don’t do paper piecing! You can use the patterns in the Printer Friendly version as templates).


White Bella Solid:

Select (11) strips from the White Jelly Roll.

Cut (8) strips 22.5″ in length for 2.5″ x 22.5″ pieces.  Use the remaining part of the strip for the 8 paper pieced fence tips.  There is plenty for this!

picket fences

Cut (3) strips into (9) sets of (2) 2.5″ x 5″ pieces. You need 18 pieces total and you can get 8 pieces per strip.

picket fences

Hometown Charm Packs

I chose to remove the solid cream fabrics from the charm packs as I felt that there would not be enough contrast between the cream and the white “fence”.

• Select (8) charms to be used with the paper pieced tips.  Cut each charm in half to create (2) 2.5″ x 5″ pieces.  Keep the two halves together for use on the same fence tip.

• Select between (16) and (32) charms to cut in half to create pieces  2.5″ x 5″.  You need (32) half charms all together, but you may or may not want to repeat which ones you have of this size.  Thus you can either choose (16) pieces or up to (32) pieces to cut in half.

picket fences

• Select (8) charms for the “post” rows.  Cut each charm in half and then cut (8) of those into 2.75″ x 2.5″ pieces.

• Select (72) charms to be used throughout the background as well.


The first thing you get to do is play with all the pretty fabrics in the charm packs!  You will need to lay out your charm squares, half charm squares and perhaps even some of your “fence” pieces to spread out the colors and patterns evenly throughout the background.  There are nine “rail” rows (which are 5″ wide)  and eight “post” rows (which are only 2.5″ wide).

You can use this picture as a visual for where you are headed.

Picket Fences

Each “post” row is only 2.5″ wide and uses half charms, jelly roll strips, and the paper pieced tip. From top to bottom, there are 3 half charms, followed by a “quarter” charm, then the paper pieced tip and the 22.5″ long fence post.

picket fence post
Each “rail” row is made up of 5 charms followed by a “rail”, then two more charms, another “rail” and ends with a single charm at the bottom.
picket fence rail
As you can see here, I just put my fabric out all over the floor and tried to evenly distribute the colors and fabrics.  You will be using both of your full sized charms (for the rail rows) and your half charms (for the post rows).
picket fences

Things can get confusing very quickly, so I find it helpful to label each row.  Use whatever system works best for you, but I just grab some generic plain labels and stick them on. (A little tip: don’t put the labels where they could get caught in the seam allowance!  This way you can keep the labels on while you sew the pieces together and remove them when you need to.)

picket fences

I start to partially construct my rows by sewing together each very simple rail column.  I press all the seams in one direction from the bottom to the top of the row.

picket fences

Sewing the Fence Tips

Use the templates in the Printer Friendly Version at the bottom of the post and make 8 copies of the fence post tips for paper piecing.  This is a very simple little paper pieced pattern. If you are not familiar with paper piecing, you can also use the print out the pattern as a template guide.  You can make your own templates simply by cutting out each shape and then add a 1/4″ seam allowance on all sides of pieces 1, 2, and 3.   Piece 1 is the fence itself and should the white solid.  Pieces 2 and 3 are two halves of a charm as chosen before.  And piece 4 is a “quarter” charm (or more accurately 2.75″ x 2.5″).

picket fences

Use the pattern to sew the white fabric to the paper and surround it on either side with the two matching half charms.

picket fences

Sew the upper half of the post row to the paper pieced fence tip, connecting the fence tip to the background fabric.  Remove the paper.

picket fences

Here is a view of the upper half of the “post” row from the front.

picket fences

Sew each upper “post” row to one of the 22.5″ long pieces of the white solid.  The rows may look a little odd at first because of the extra fabric on either side of the fence tip.  But you want this!  That is your seam allowance for when you sew a “post” row to a “rail” row.

picket fences

Putting your Quilt Top Together

Begin to sew each of your “post” and “rail” vertical rows together in order to create your quilt top.  Pin together at each matching seam and as needed to help keep your fabrics together.

picket fences

Sew row 1 (a rail row) to row 2 (a post row) and press the seam allowance toward row 2.  Then sew these two rows to row 3 and so on.

picket fences

Your quilt top will begin to come together.  Soon you will be able to see a fence, piece by piece.

Picket Fences

More rows sewn together.

Picket Fences

A whole fence, built of rail rows and post rows!

Picket Fences

The Backing

The backing of a quilt is always a bit larger than the quilt top to allow for some shifting during the quilting process.  This back is no exception.

From the two yard lengths of canvas, cut an 18″ width of the grey polka dot and a 33″ width of the town print.

picket fences

Using some of the left over fabric from the jelly rolls and a single charm, create a strip to go between the two canvas prints.  Cut the charm into fourths and use three of the pieces spread evenly between lengths of white solid.  Then sew this pieced strip in between the two canvas prints, creating one backing.

picket fences

Here you can see the backing in action!  That little quarter charm just pops off the back!


Completing the Quilt:

Use your favorite basting method to baste together the backing, batting and quilt top. I chose to use a low loft cotton batting. Then quilt as desired. I echo quilted the fence posts with straight line quilting. Then I used free motion quilting to create a horizontal “wind” effect on the top half of the quilt and a vertical “grass” effect on the bottom half of the quilt.


I bound my quilt using (5) 2 1/2″ wide strips sewn together on the bias end-to-end. I fold that in half all along the length and stitch to the edge of the quilt. Then I flip the folded edge to the back of the quilt and hand sew in place. Just a simple double fold binding method.


One Crib Quilt sized 45″ x 60″.


I hope you like this design! I’d love to see any versions you make of this quilt. You can share them on Flickr in my group Cut To Pieces and of course the Moda Bake Shop group.

Angela Pingel