Secret Garden Quilt Pattern

secret garden trapunto quilt

Secret Garden Quilt Pattern

Pattern: Download quilt patterns, piecing layout and fabric cutting layout (5 pages) here.

Tools & Materials
1. Applique patterns, collect the patterns and tutorials from the following pages: “Flowers, Leaves and Stems“, “Ladybug, Butterflies and Snails“, “Songbird, Tree and Sun“, and, “Secret Garden Font
2. Applique fusible web (I used Steam-A-Seam), qty = 20 sheets
3. Sewing Machine that is able to do free motion quilting, ie. with feed dog down or covered (I used Bernina B550 Quilter’s Edition)
4. Darning foot (or Bernina Stitch Regulator, BSR), walking foot, 1/4″ foot
5. Cotton blend batting (at least 64″ x 88″)
6. Polyester high loft batting (approximately half of the batting size)
7. Quilting cotton thread, #50, white, coordinate colors and contrast colors of your choice
8. Quilter Safety pins and/or basting thread
9. Fabric chalk or pencil and ruler
10. Cutting mat
11. Rotary cutter
12. Scissors
13. Iron
14. Printer and papers (letter size, qty= 20)

Fabric Details:
1. White cotton 44″ wide, 4.5 yards
2. Backing fabric, Pink base white polka-dot, 44″ wide 6 yards
3. Edge binder, 2.5″, 9 yard (or use 8 strips from jelly-roll)
4. Applique and square patchwork:
Brand: Moda Fabrics
Designer: Sandy Gervais
Theme: Sassy [precuts: 5″ charm pack and 2.5″ jelly-roll]
usage: 1 charm pack and 2 jelly-rolls


click to view bigger picture (open in new tab or new window).

Finished Dimension: approximately 62″ x 86″ (to suit Super Single Bed).
If you want to quilt for single bed, the quilt size is 56″ x 86″ and the center part include the inner boxed border is 36″ wide. Adjust the appliques and the rest of the component accordingly either by resizing them or omit some of them.

piecing-layoutCut white fabric pieces according to the quilt pattern downloaded from the above link. Snip a small cut at the edge of the fabric and tear along the way is always better than cutting by using scissor or rotary cutter. It will give you absolutely straight grain lines by tearing the fabric.
I cut the white fabric pieces with 1″ seam allowance for the initial stage. The reason is because the fabric pieces might distort (shrink) a little during patchwork and trapunto quilting. In order to make sure you have enough fabric for piecing up, add 1″ at each side as safety factor. Use fabric chalk or pencil lightly mark the actual size of all of the panels (on the right side), erasable fabric marker fades away too fast. After patchwork and trapunto quilt are done, check the dimension again and redraw the marking again if needed, trim down the seam allowance to 1/4″ before you piece them up.

side-panel-piecesPrint out all the appliques as listed above, follow the tutorials and quilt pattern to stick them on the white fabrics that you have cut. Plan your colors and fabrics carefully for the applique, I used 5″ charm pack for larger appliques and sometimes with jelly-roll for smaller pieces.
Refer to this method for fast and easy way to make huge amount of fabric applique.
Cut the high loft batting slightly bigger than the applique, pin it or use washable glue to temporary stick it on the wrong side of the white fabric where the applique was fused on. Quilt the applique patchworks with trapunto method.

trim-raw-edgesAfter you have done with all the appliques, trim the raw edge to have 1/4″ seam allowance, except those at the utmost edges of the quilt.

square-piecingPiecing up square patchwork.
1. Sew a few strips of jelly rolls next to each other with 1/4″ foot. It doesn’t have to be a fix numbers and colors of strip, just do it as you think will look good, for example, in a group of 3 strips, 4 strips, 5 strips etc…
2. Cut 2 1/2″ across the roll of strip.
3 & 4. Mix and match each set with others and sew with 1/4″ foot to make up the boxed borders and top panel of the quilt.

quilt-secret-garden-1Full assembly of the front quilt after sewing all the pieces together.

quilt-secret-garden-2Full assembly of the back quilt after sewing all the pieces together.
The pink/white polka-dot backing is joint by 3 pieces of panels, sides are 10″ each and the center is 42″.

batting-and-backingNow, sandwich the cotton blend batting in between the front and back pieces.
Align the backing to the front so that the 2 vertical joining lines are on the outer seam lines of the first square patchwork boxed border (the one next to the center panel). Baste them together along the lines.
Pin or baste the rest of the area.
Sew the 2 vertical lines with walking foot. I noticed that this method is difficult to get a perfect alignment, so I tried another method when I did my son’s blanket. That second method is to baste the center piece of the backing to the batting and front quilt, then add and sew the two side panels follow by the top banner. I will do a more detail tutorial when I share my son’s “Road Runner” Quilt.

before-quiltHere comes the interesting and challenging part, Free Motion Quilting!!!! This quilt is huge, so you need to do it section by section by rolling the quilt up to cater for the arm space of the sewing machine.
Change your presser foot to darning foot or BSR, lower your feed dog or cover it up.
Needle down and up to bring the lower thread up to the surface, make a few stitches on the same spot to lock the stitch. Always perform this when you start a new quilting route.
Quilt an outline just outside the appliques with white #50 quilting thread.
Continue to quilt the rest of the white areas with loopy lines (click to see the video by Leah Day) except the utmost white border. If this is your first time, practice with a 4″ swatch before quilting.
The utmost border is quilted in 1″ spacing straight lines.
Stitch in the ditch for the square patchwork boxed border, then quilt a smaller square (1 1/2″ x 1 1/2″) in alternate squares.
Hide all thread ends into the quilt or you can trim them away.

binding-stripsTrim the borders of the quilt to 62″ (W) x 86″ (L) or 2 inches on the white borders and the squares of the patchwork.
Prepare a 2 1/2″ binder strips by joining 8 jelly-roll strip to make up approximately 9 yard long.
Fold the strip into half (1 1/4″) and iron.

edge-binding1. Align the raw edges of the folded binder to the quilt edge, sew with walking foot of 1/4″ seam allowance around (refer the picture below for mitered corner).
2. Stop at about 2 1/2″ away from the beginning.
3. Mark the joining distance and sew to join the binder strip together. Trim away excess.
4. Continue to sew the binder on the edge.

mitered-corner-bindingThese are the steps to sew mitered corners for the binding.
1. Stop at 1/4″ before you reach the end of the edge, perform back stitching to secure the stitches.
2. Flip the strip up vertically to form a 45° angle.
3. Flip it down again with a horizontal fold align to the top edge. Align the binder strip to the next corner of raw edge.
4. Sew from the top raw edge down. Repeat the same at every corner.

hand-sew-bindingFold the binder over to the other side and stitch along the previous sewing lines. I like to hand sewn this side as it gives a perfectly nice and clean seam line, though it took me a day to slip stitch the binder of the whole quilt but it is worth the effort when you see the end result.
That’s it, you have got the beautiful quilt finished. I have spent months to get it done bit by bit with lots of interruptions while getting my house designed interiorly, renovated, touch up and moving! I think I could do it within a month if I am focused enough! Bravo!

secret garden trapunto quilt pattern

{More photos and story on Page 1.}

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65 comments... read them below or add one

  1. Pingback:Quick Fusible Applique Method | Craft Passion 

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  4. Good morning,
    I love this sweet quilt and want to make it for my grand daughter. I have a couple of questions. First I want to use fabric by the yard instead of pre-cuts. Can you give me an idea of how many different fabrics I need and how much of each I should buy? And second, The “secret garden” font, is that section of the quilt long enough to be used as a REVERSIBLE PILLOW SHAM?

    Thank you so much,

    • Hi Amy,
      Thanks for loving this quilt. I haven’t used the pattern in non-precut fabric, so I am just going to make an estimation on the amount of fabric in yard in the mathematic way. The pre-cuts of charm pack and jellyroll come in 38 different fabrics, charm pack has 42 pcs of (5″ x 5″) fabrics in a pack (4 pcs of them are duplicated) and jellyroll has 40 strips (2.5″ x 42″) of fabrics per roll (2 pcs of them are duplicate). Based on 1 charm pack and 2 jellyroll of materials, and assumed that I have used up all the materials (which I didn’t) you will need a total 9450 square inches of fabrics. If you are going to purchase 38 different fabrics of 42″ wide, you will need about 6″ length (9450 / 42 / 38 = 6). You may apply the maths to get the optimum fabric amount that you want, for example: if you want each fabric in quarter yard, then 9450 / 42 / 9 = 25, you will need 25 different fabrics in quarter yard.
      In order to use it for the words that you want, you need to reduce the text size and probably make it to double line, otherwise, the font panel can’t take numbers of letter you want.
      Hope this help. Would be glad to see you able to proceed to make the quilt for your grand daughter soon 🙂

      • Thank you so much for all of that information!!! I really had no idea that there were so many different fabrics–from the pics, it looks like 10 to 12. My granddaughter loves Frozen but I’m afraid that she’ll grow out of it. My thought was to use the Frozen fabrics with your design to get a more timeless quilt, and she will still be able to recognize the characters that she loves.

        Thanks again!!!

        • Frozen theme quilt, how nice!!! Lots of little girls are crazy about Elsa and Anna. By the way, my calculation is just an estimation, you might not need that much of fabrics in real facts due to wastage in pre-cut pack.

  5. Thank you so much for sharing your patterns and techniques for the Secret Garden Quilt. I absolutely love it! I created my version, using your patterns to make gifts for my daughters. They loved their quilts!

  6. Thank you for sharing the patterns and tutorials for this lovely quilt! Looking forward to making it…some day!

  7. Adorable quilt! Thank you for sharing the pattern! I’m making one for my grand-daughter but in totally different colors as I hand dye all my own fabrics and she is all about Purple! LOL Been quilting 30 years, but this will be my first trapunto quilt.

    I think there is an error in your measurements on cutting layout for the backing… you have dimensions to cut, but these are the finished dimensions according to your back layout. Shouldn’t another 1/2″ be added to length and width for seam allowances?

  8. This is just amazing, you have a special gift of creating something beautiful. Wow. You made my day. Looking at something beautiful just makes my day. Thank you.

  9. You are so creative. I just love the quilt and your appliques for onesies!Thank you!

  10. I’ve had a lot of trouble finding the fabric for the quilt but did find it. My question is the website says 40 – 2 1/2″ X WOF. In your directions you say you used two jelly roles. But you don’t say how long they are. I’ve only been quilting since this past February and have not used a jelly role before. Can you let me know? Thanks.

    • Hi Ruby, Jelly Roll is a standard precut fabric of 44″ x 2 1/2″. Jelly roll is cut from selvage to selvage of a fabric (usually 44″) in the 2 1/2″. In 1 pack of jelly roll, it usually contains about 40 strips of precut fabric.
      Hope this answer your question. Kindly let me know should you need more information on this.
      Thank you.

  11. this is one of the most beautiful quilts I’ve seen

  12. It’s a wonderful! Oh, it’s too much work, too much patience and too much beautiful 🙂

  13. What a fabulous quilt. This is my next project for the summer.
    Is therein easier way of downloading the appliqué patterns etc?
    Bye for now

    • Hi Patricia, all the applique patterns are downloadable from it’s respective tutorial post. I didn’t consolidate them into 1 link as I am thinking you might want to read each of the detail tutorial.

  14. I am so impressed with your design in secret Garden quilt and it will be my first applique quilt project.Thank you for sharing.

  15. I’m not seeing the link for the pattern. Help! Love love love the pictures

  16. I have managed to find online through various sources the moda fabric used for this totally amazing quilt.
    I have one question though if I may.

    When looking at the layout pattern and reading the measurements, I do understand that the seam allowance is not included but you said in the directions that The fabric pieces layout in the quilt pattern is 1″ bigger on each side than the actual size. “”

    Does that mean that each piece is 1″ bigger?? I mean for example, The top border that is shown just above the main applique design is listed as being made up of 2″ squares for a total width of 42″.

    Does that mean that each 2″ square is not a 2″ square ? I am not understanding this part at all. 42″ wide minus how many inches?
    Or are you meaning the width and height of the panels themselves?

    I am hoping to begin this pattern within the week so any help you could give me would be really appreciated.

    OR, if anyone else reads this post and can explain this, please do email me.
    Thanks so much,


    • Hi Cheryl,
      The additional 1″ for every white pieces are for seam allowance. I make them bigger for the beginning so that you can trim down later to the actual size plus 1/4″ seam allowance, the piecing dimension still remain the same as shown in the pattern. Hope this explanation is clear. I will amend the instruction. Thank you for pointing it out.

  17. Hi Joanne,
    This is so lovely and such a feel good quilt. This is my first time to your site. I have made simple quilts, have never tried anything like this. I would like to try in the future though. Have you ever done any owls? Thanks so much for sharing, it is awesome just to come look.

  18. love love your quilt. I would really like to make but was looking for that exact fabric and cannot find it anywhere could you tell me what web site you got it from? thank you

  19. This quilt is absolutely gorgeous. I will definately be making this for my grand-daughter. She will love it! Thank you so much for the pattern.

  20. I love this quilt and am just about to start making it. Thank you so much for the pattern.
    Wondering if you have any other patterns for either girls or boys similar to this.

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  23. Lovely. How smart you must be to continually crank out these wonderful and delightful designs. Thank you so much. Must try.

  24. Hi Joanne,

    Thank you for sharing this beautiful quilt pattern. My friend and I teamed up and purchased the fabric to each make a quilt for our granddaughters. We have one completed and another just about finished! We are delighted with the results. We have enough fabric to do another quilt. I know you have copyright to the pattern and would never sell the pattern. If we make another quilt, are we allowed to sell that.

    Thank you again for your inspiration and for sharing your talent and expertise so amateurs like us can create as well!



    • I won’t stop you from selling your own handmade 🙂 Would love if you can show me how does the quilt came out. Thanks:)

      • Hi Joanne,

        Thank you. Would gladly send you a picture. Not sure how to post it here. If you could email me, I would email a picture of the quilt that is completed and will forward the others once projects are finished.


        • Hi Christine, please send it via the contact form by clicking the “Contact Us” at the very top of the page. There is a button for you to submit a photo after the message box. Or, you may send to me via Please allow me to share your photos in facebook page too.
          Thank you 🙂

  25. Роскошное одеяло, кропотливая работа. Спасибо за красоту! Это вдохновляет!

    Translation (by Google):
    Luxurious duvet, painstaking work. Thanks for the beauty! It is inspiring!

  26. Hello,

    This is such a beautiful quilt. I simply love it. Hopefuly, some day, when I have time, I’ll be able to get my hands on a sewing maching and make this beautiful quilt. Your designs inspire me so much.
    Can you please tell me where in London (or around) I can get some cheap cloth?


  27. Hi Craft Passion,

    Your Patchwork is such marvelous! May I know where can I get cheap and nice cotton cloth to make all this patchwork? Could you please recommend some from Taiwan whereby is cheap and can purchase online? I would want to make the same as cute as yours!

  28. This is so beautiful! I hope to one day make a quilt that looks this good!

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  30. Amazing!! wonderful!! surely one day try to do

  31. qué belleza, me fascina!!!! Tanto así que no puedo describirlo en ingles!! 😉

  32. Hi, your blog very inspiring me *thank you* I already tried one and I made pillow secret garden and its failed 🙁 but I will make it again…I have set of singer presser foot, which one I can use for trapunto quilt? Because I dont have bernina stitch regulator.

  33. I thought I was special until I came across with your blog. I am astonished!

  34. This is adorable! We have a new grand daughter and i think this will be a great quilt when she moves to a twin bed! I’m going to save this pattern! Thanks for sharing!

  35. Wow! You are truly talented. That is the most beautiful thing I’ve seen! Don’t know if I’m brave enough to try it, but it’s something to aspire to!

    • Thank you, Kerryn. I was pondering the same when I first saw this method more than a year ago…. with practices on smaller projects, I gained the confident to make a bigger quilt at last! You can do the same!

  36. Thank you for this stunning pattern I’ve enjoyed watching it develop.

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  41. WOW!!! Just the most adorable quilt ever! Beautiful work and the detail in the instructions you have been SO kind to take the time to write up are fabulous. THANK YOU SOOOOOOOOOOOO MUCH!!!!!! I love this pattern.

  42. It’s Wonderful and Amazing! Thank you very much for sharing this with us! Have a nice weekend! A hug!

  43. It`s absolutely beautiful!

  44. I really like this quilt! Especially the “secret garden” 🙂

  45. That is just stunning! I love it, you’re so clever 🙂 x

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