The Five & Dime Quilt Tutorial

Five & Dime Thumbnail

Jenny Doan is joined by Lynne Hagmeier of Kansas Troubles Quilters (Moda designer) to show off her quick and easy Five & Dime Quilt! It’s a beautiful project using charm packs and layer cakes. We know you’ll love it! Check out Lynne’s site at

Video Transcript:

Hi, I’m Jenny from the Missouri Star Quilt Company, and I am here today with Lynne Hagmeier from Kansas Troubles.

Jenny: Welcome Lynne.

Lynne: Thanks for having me.

Jenny: Oh it’s so much fun to have her here. And I want you to take a look at this quilt behind me. This is a gorgeous quilt and, of course, you know, in the way we do things, it’s quick and easy. I discovered that Lynne thinks a lot like we do here; she loves precuts like we do and she’s come up with this amazing way to sew these together. So it’s, so she has a new book out. It’s called Loose Change and the change, what does this refer to?

Lynne: The whole change concept is layer cakes are 10 inch squares, we call those dimes, and five inch charm squares are nickels, and the little minis that are brand new from Moda just this year are pennies. So, we stack them all up and get projects, projects like this.

Jenny: It’s awesome. This book is full of cool ideas.

Lynne: It is.

Jenny: Easy, easy. You know we love the easy here. So, we want to show you how to make this quilt and you are just going to not believe how easy this is.

Lynne: So, for this quilt, we’re using KT Favorites, which is a brand new fabric collection that comes out in December. We need a layer cake, a charm pack, and two fabrics for borders.

Jenny: So the KT Favorites came about, how?

Lynne: We did a KT Favorites 1 about three years ago because we had so many requests for some of the older prints. You know, I’ve been doing fabric for Moda for 14 years…

Jenny: Oh.

Lynne: …and there were some older ones that people were requesting that have come back…

Jenny: They just love them.

Lynne: …and to have a basics line in the warehouse all the time so you can always get Kansas Troubles Red or Green or Blue. Instead of doing a splatter or a real solid, I decided to go back and select about a dozen of my prints.

Jenny: Oh, that’s a great idea.

Lynne: So, this is the second offering and I take requests for KT Favorites 3. If there’s a print in your collection that you can’t live without and you hate to cut into it, let me know and we’ll redo it.

Jenny: The cool thing about the fabrics with the Moda designers is that they’re in a color way so you, you’ll never come out with hot pink. This is always going to be your line, so what people have of this years ago, is going to blend with years from now, which is so awesome for the consumer, really cool.

Lynne: And one of the fun things about doing these layered, patchwork quilts is that if you use two different fabric lines–a layer cake and a charm–you actually have 80 different fabrics to play with.

Jenny: Oh, that’s fun.

Lynne: And they’re going to play together nicely, but you don’t have to worry about getting the same print next to each other…

Jenny: Very cool!

Lynne: …which bothers me.

Jenny: Yeah. So, so show us how you do this.

Lynne: Ok. We’ve created this five and dime ruler which not only centers but cuts your pieces. So, the edge of the five and dime ruler fits along the edge of your layer cake, and in the little “L”, your charm pack is perfectly centered.

Jenny: And we, so we, this gets the charm pack right smack in the center?

Lynne: Yes.

Jenny: And you don’t have to do any crazy measuring or two inches, you just lay the ruler on there and do it.

Lynne: That seemed to be the most difficult part of making this quilt was people measuring over and over and over to make sure that they’re centered.

Jenny: There’s some OCD people out there.

Lynne: Exactly, yes!

Jenny: It’s got to be right there.

Lynne: And it drove me nuts. So, it’s like, “just put it on there!” So, this is how it works is, with our five and dime ruler.

Jenny: Perfect.

Lynne: Then you just need to put a pin in all the opposite corners to hold it, and I will let you go to the sewing machine. We are going to stitch this about ⅛ of an inch from the inside of that pinked edge. We’re embracing that pinked edge. I know, it kind of freaks out a lot of people; they don’t know what to do with it. So, we are going to embrace it and use it as a design element. Start in the center of one side and just stitch all the way around and I’ll cut it so that our loose threads, then, beginning and ending are of a seam allowance.

Jenny: Ok, so I am starting right in the middle on this one side?

Lynne: Correct.

Jenny: Now how perfect does my ⅛ of an inch have to be?

Lynne: As perfect as you’re comfortable with.

Jenny: Ha, ha!

Lynne: It is always better to be a little wider than a little narrower because you don’t want your stitching to run off into the pinked edge because it then, it may unravel a little bit.

Jenny: Ok, I think my pinked edge is going to be like my, like my quarter inch. It’s going to be just a hair fat.

Lynne: That’s fine. When the quilt is washed the edges will just curl up and softly fray. It won’t unravel because of the pinked edge.

Jenny: Yeah.

Lynne: So the narrower or wider your stitching is will depend on how much that curls up. So, it will just be a little more primitive for you if your ⅛ inch is a little bit fatter.

Jenny: Mine will just be a little fluffier!

Lynne: That’s right. And it’s really a very fun effect.

Jenny: It’s a cute look.

Lynne: It’s great for kid quilts. I have a granddaughter who just pets hers. It’s been washed so many times, she loves…

Jenny: Quilt petting!

Lynne: Yes! Oh I’m hoping in the future she’ll be a quilter.

Jenny: I have several granddaughters that are so, it’s a good hope. It’s good to put your needle down and pivot. And one of the things about, that I noticed on this, that Lynne uses kind of a gray-green thread and it just goes with all the colors. So that’s kind of handy to know.

Lynne: You don’t have to change threads on the lights or the darks, you just pick one and go with it.

Jenny: Alright, I have sewn mine a quarter of an inch here, not a quarter, I mean an eighth of an inch here, but it’s a little fat of an eighth. But, she says it doesn’t matter. It’s ok if it’s a little, in a little bit. It doesn’t matter.

Lynne: So we position the ruler in the L position to center our charm square, now we’re going to turn it around like a 7 to cut. So, the ruler will line up along the top of your layer cake and right along the edge of your charm square so you know this is cutting it exactly in half.

Jenny: We’re cutting it right down the middle, right down the middle, in half on both sides.

Lynne: Exactly. And then, hopefully without jostling the…

Jenny: Do we just turn this?

Lynne: Nope, I turn my ruler, actually.

Jenny: Oh.

Lynne: But you can do it either way, dear.

Jenny: Ha, ha! Perfect! There we go. I’m so helpful.

Lynne: A rotating little mat is perfect for this project. You cut it again. We have a four patch that has the little stitched parts.

Jenny: How cool is that?

Lynne: So, to make a block…my fabric lines are comprised of 25% lights and 75% darks for the most part. So out of 40 prints, you’re usually going to have 9 to 11 lights and the rest will be darks. In order to evenly distribute the lights over the quilt top so it kind of sparkles, we want to pull four darks…

Jenny: So what, you’re just mixing up all these blocks, we’ll have all these ones cut and we’ll mix them.

Lynne: We’ll have them all cut. We’ll put…

Jenny: Why don’t we cut one more of these?

Lynne: Cut one more?

Jenny: Yeah, cut one more. And I think it’s good for people to see, too, just to, just to, just to show them.

Lynne: Okay.

Jenny: I love how the ruler, it’s multi-use. You know, a template is good for one thing, but if it can do more things, it’s awesome. So this, this actually, you know, centers the thing and then, oh, look at her–all smart and turning her ruler.

Lynne: Well, this isn’t so bulky. I feel like it stays a little straighter that way.

Jenny: That is probably true.

Lynne: So then we have…

Jenny: Let’s move these down here. Hey, look at that. So now you just put it together like a four patch.

Lynne: Correct.

Jenny: Oh, that is so cool. Alright, I’m going to go over and sew these. And this is your quarter of an inch, right? Regular quarter?

Lynne: Now we use a regular quilters’ quarter of an inch seam.

Jenny: And if you’ve sewn them, if you’ve sewn them the same, like, I mean the same on the outside edge, do you know what I mean, all the way around?

Lynne: Yes.

Jenny: They’ll match up, you don’t have to like, lay them out or anything?

Lynne: Correct. And I don’t worry so much, when you sew the four back together, the pinked edges may not come out absolutely perfect and we’re ok with that because this is a primitive process, but I’m really a quilter when it comes to that intersection there. I really like for that to match up.

Jenny:  Ya. So we’ve got the two pieces here and now we’re just going to lay them on top of each other this way?

Lynne: Correct.

Jenny: And we’re going to nest this up. Should we press this first?

Lynne: You can. Finger pressing it works for me.

Jenny: Ok, so I’m going to take it over here and I’m going to feel, make sure that seam is together. I like to kind of anchor my, sew a few stitches, and then I’m going to come down here to this, this seam and make sure those pieces are laying in opposite directions and they’re nested all snug.

Lynne: This is one of the few projects that I will actually press the seam open…

Jenny: Oh ok.

Lynne: Because when I lay the quilt out on the blocks, I turn it so many times to get the color placement…

Jenny: Why don’t you iron that? So she’s going to iron, press her seams…

Lynne: I do my opposing seams.

Jenny: …and then press that middle one open. I sometimes, you know if I do a pinwheel or something like that, I press the seams open. It’s so…

Lynne: Well, very seldom on something like this are you going to quilt in the ditch. And that’s really the only reason not to press your seams open is if you think you’ll be quilting in the ditch.

Jenny: And that reduces your bulk. Look how cool that is! And that’s the whole quilt right there.

Lynne: That’s the whole thing.

Jenny: That’s the whole quilt.

Lynne: This has 42. We have used every layer cake and every charm square and two fabrics, so you’re talking, you know, your supplies are less than a hundred dollars.

Jenny: So, so is there any trick to laying it out? Does the light or dark always go one direction or another?

Lynne: I try to alternate and kind of mix it up.

Jenny: So then you’re just sewing these big squares together.

Lynne: Ya, in rows.

Jenny: Yep.

Lynne: And you can do just about however you want.

Jenny: Start another row here. She’s got some all laid out. This is so pretty! Ya, it really doesn’t matter where they, where they are, does it?

Lynne: No. I try not to get…

Jenny: Look how cool that looks.

Lynne: …to get the lights together. Now it really is, all the fabrics go together, everything coordinates. It’s really pretty simple.

Jenny: That is really fun.

Lynne: Oops! I try not to put two of the same thing together there but…

Jenny: That is really fun. Look how cool that is. So let’s sew two of these together and, again, these are, this is what’s going to nest right here, these two little seams.

Lynne: Correct.

Jenny: And, oh, and look what she did. The magic twist. Ha, ha! That is a fun little trick there…

Lynne: When I have time…

Jenny: …that quilters use.

Lynne: Yes.

Jenny: I’ve never actually mastered that, you know. I’ve been shown it a zillion times and it’s one of those things where I’m like, “hmm,” ya know? I never can remember which seam to pick; it’s terrible. So, I press open like you do. Alright, so we’ll do this and we’ll check and see how easy it lines up. One of the things I love to do when I start sewing blocks together is, I just try it and I don’t make a big deal about measuring it just to see how easily it’s going to go together. And this went together perfectly, just perfectly.

Lynne: You start with a perfectly cut 10 inch square, and you’ve cut it into four pieces so they really should match up.

Jenny: Wow!

Lynne: Exactly. Because there was no chance for you to make an error in cutting.

Jenny: That’s awesome! So here’s the cool thing about this, it works with any size square.

Lynne: Absolutely!

Jenny: So, whatever size your big square is, your middle size is going to be half, and she has one here that she did with charms and candies. Let me just show you this. So here’s the finished quilt, right here. This looks like a lot of work, but it’s done exactly the same way. So, here, I’m going to just push this out here a little bit and show you here these little…

Lynne: Nope. Those are the blocks. We want to get rid of those. There’s one.

Jenny: Oop, those are the big ones. There’s a little one. So look. Here’s the little candy in the middle of the little square. And see? We’ve got one here.

Lynne: And, of course, we have a little ruler called Spare Change.

Jenny: Oh, a tiny ruler. How cute.

Lynne: The miniature version of that we would use not only to center again, but also to turn and cut and it really is a time saver.

Jenny: It’s just that easy.

Lynne: It is.

Jenny: We don’t die over, ya know, I mean, it’s just so cool, it’s so quick. I love the idea of leaving the seam out and because it’s pinked, it’s not going to, it’s not going to go crazy on you.

Lynne: No, no. For a kid quilt in brights, it’s adorable. I’ve done it as manly quilts and the squares seem to work really well on a guy quilt.

Jenny: So, here’s these little ones that are done up. They’re so cute. So, let’s lay a few of these together so you can get the idea. Again, it’s exactly the same thing–works with any size square. What a quick, fun idea. This is really, really fun. I love this idea. So, thanks for coming today, Lynne. This was really fun.

Lynne: Well, thanks for having me, Jenny.
Jenny: So, if you love this project, pick up this book, Loose Change. There are 18 projects in here just like it and you can get the rulers too. We hope you enjoyed this tutorial from the Missouri Star Quilt Company.

posted: Charm Packs, Layer Cakes, Quilt Charm Packs, Quilts and Quilt Blocks | tagged: , , , , , ,
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