Zippy Quilt

Hi everyone! I’m Tammie Schaffer of craftytammie, and I am happy to be back here at the Bake Shop with my newest recipe, zippy. This quilt top is made entirely of charm squares and half square triangles. Each block is so simple to put together. It reminds me of zipper teeth, or maybe one of those Rubik’s snake toys! Whatever you think it looks like, I hope you’ll enjoy making one for yourself. Let’s get started.

4 charm packs Elementary
4 charm packs Moda Bella Solids white
1/2 yard for binding
4 yards for backing

Choosing your fabrics:

I picked Sweetwater’s new line Elementary. As usual, they have some fabulous prints in this line! I love the graphic black and white prints, the aqua color is beautiful, and they always do great dots and texts. I used 4 charm packs to give me the most variety, because I didn’t want to repeat any prints within a single block.  I also wanted to keep each “row” the same color, but you can mix it up and combine the different colors within a line.

Sorting your fabrics:

Open your charm packs up and sort them according to your plan. For a quilt with a 4 x 5 block layout like this one, you need a total of 20 blocks.  How many charms you need for each “row” depends on your design plan. If you’re doing rows of specific colors, choose the one with the most charms in your fabric line. That will be the middle and longest diagonal “row”. In Elementary, I chose black. Then khaki and aqua were the next two rows, followed with cream.

Cream prints: 2 blocks (7 charms)
Khaki prints: 5 blocks (21 charms)
Black prints: 8 blocks (28 charms)
Aqua prints: 5 blocks (21 charms)
Background: 110 charms


Making the half square triangles:

You’ll pair up each charm with a solid. Mark your diagonal line – I use a Sewline pencil – and then you’ll stitch 1/4″ on each side of that line. Chain piece these while you catch up on your latest Netflix obsession. Cut apart your half square triangles on the drawn line, and press open. Trim your HST to 4 1/2 inch.

Trim 40 of your background charms down to 4.5″. These are the corner squares of your blocks. Now you can get to the fun part, laying out your design.

I really recommend a design wall or floor space where you can lay them all out before stitching the individual blocks.  But I like to micro
manage my print placement! If you prefer a random look, you can skip this step and start making blocks.

It’s helpful to take a photo of it once you have your placement decided. This gives you something to refer to in case your child mixes them up on you before they get stitched together. Trust me on this.

Once you have your layout, you can start stitching your blocks. Each block is composed of (2) 4.5 inch solid squares, which you create by trimming your solid charms. Then there are 7 half square triangles. The completed 12.5 inch blocks are then alternated to create the “zipper teeth”.  Lay them out, referring to your photo you took 🙂 and stitch together. Repeat. You need 20 blocks total. Sew your blocks into rows, and your rows into your quilt top. Back, quilt, bind, and you’re done!


I didn’t want a super dense quilting for this, since I know my kids will be snuggling up with it. I handed it off to my friend Jessica (Jess Toye Quilts) and she came up with a perfect design. Simple wavy lines on all the background and curvy clementines in all of the rows. It is nice and
even, no stiff spots but still a lot of visual texture. The quilting is close enough together that the batting won’t shift or bunch. Of course,
you could also quilt some beautiful feathers or vines in all of the negative space, echo quilt along each zipper, or do something different
in each row. Have fun with it!

Backing and Binding:

I used a yard of the aqua dot surrounded by wide borders of white for my backing. But you could piece together a backing using your leftover
charms. If you choose to piece your backing, you won’t need as much yardage for the back. I bound it in the black leaf print, which is one of my favorites from the whole line. I made my binding straight grain 2.5″, and used 6 WOF strips. I used my usual method, where I machine stitch the binding to the front, then turn and hand stitch it to the back.

6 blocks x 8 blocks

You can make this smaller or larger by adjusting the number of blocks you use.  You can also change the look by reversing the direction of the
blocks. I think this would look amazing in Bella Solids!

I hope you will try making one of these! If you do, be sure to add it to the Moda Bakeshop flickr pool – we’d love to see what you’re making! Tag your photos with #modabakeshop when you share on social media too! And come by craftytammie and see what I’m making with my leftover charms from this project!

1 throw size quilt, approx. 48′ x 60″

Tammie Schaffer

5 comments on “Zippy Quilt

  1. Naomi Vela says:

    I don’t seem (seam!) to be able to download the printer friendly version of this…any ideas?

  2. janet klamt says:

    I couldn’t either. I just used the print function under the file tab and it printed right out.

  3. Deb says:

    not working to get the print friendly version what a great quilt!! cant wait to make it!

  4. Donna Simonton says:

    Love this! I am always looking for new modern quilts and this is perfect!

  5. Jen says:

    Printer friendly link is broken.

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