Monday, November 16, 2015

Stack N Whack Supplies

Supply list and fabric suggestions
for class at
Aunt Judy's Attic
on Stack N Whack,
Class is now complete, but still a great resource
Check out the class photos at the end of post.
Instructor: Paco Rich
Paco's Watermelon Stack N Whack Quilt: 48"×48" - click on photos to see a larger view.
***Please read through, there is a lot of information to help you pick fabrics, find the repeat and select how many yards to purchase/find in your stash. PLEASE contact me with any questions you may have or if I am not clear. Chances are, someone else has the same question! My contact info is at the bottom of this post***

Stack n Whack is a way to cut fabric so you can have multiple repeats with little waste. This method is not recommended for small projects such as a table runner, but intended for large quilts.

In class, we will be walking through, step-by-step, on how to cut our fabric and piece it so that we can end up with a pinwheel of repeating fabrics. By the end of class you will have completed at least 2 or 3 pinwheels.

Sewing Machine
Sewing Notions - thread, scissors, flat head straight pins
Cutting Mat
Rotary Cutter - with a new blade - makes life easier!

Stack-n-Whack 45° triangle tool ruler - let Judy know as soon as possible if you need one and she will have them ordered.
Ruler comes with a pattern for: Trellis Garden Quilt by Bethany S. Reynolds

When picking your fabric, look for these things:

Medium to Large Print - the size of your palm or larger

Contrasting Colors

Geometric shapes - lines, circles, squares...

Fabric that is often considered "busy".

Yardage and Finding the Repeat:
I can't give you an exact number of yards because all fabric has a different size of repeat.... BUT, I can tell you how to find the repeat and figure out how many yards you will need.

Finding the Repeat:
To find the repeat, look along the side of the selvage for a distinctive edge in the print, example: the tip of a flower, a dinosaur tail, or other such image in your fabric. Then move on down the selvage and find the exact replica.
Look at the picture above with my flower garden print, notice the white daisy to the left along the selvage side of the fabric? Then the white daisy repeats a little further down the edge of the selvage with the same group of three pink flowers below it? That is one repeat. We will need 8 repeats for one project. Notice how the white daisy repeats on the right side of the photo, these do not count as a repeat. Repeats must be in a line along the edge of the selvage.

Measuring a Repeat:
Now to measure. Pick a spot, any spot memorable to you. Take your ruler and measure to that same exact spot on the next repeat. For the flower garden print I am picking the edge of one white daisy center to the same edge of the next daisy center. This flower garden print repeat happens to be 8-3/8" long.

As a beginner stack n whacker, I do not recommend repeats being smaller than 5".

Keep in mind: The larger the repeat, the larger you can make your wheels.

The Math/Yardage:
If your print repeat is 8.375 inches long, multiply that by 8 total repeats and it will require at least 2 yards of fabric.

Here is the formula: 
[# of inches in one repeat] × 8 = [# of inches needed],

Then you take [# of inches needed] ÷ 36 = [# of yards needed].

8.375" × 8 = 67"
67" ÷ 36" = 1.861111111 yds

Consider extra fabric to show off what the original print was, possibly using it as a border in your quilt. The formula above will give you the yardage for the wheels only.

What not to use:

Blender fabrics -
Fabric has large print, but when you step back and look at it, this reads as a tan fabric. There is not any high contrasting colors.
Reads as a blue solid.

Small print -
Print is too small.
Contrasting colors, but the print is too small.

Panels -
Large print, but no repeating pattern. **EDITED** I recently saw a Stack n Whack quilt made with panels. But keep in mind, the repeat is one panel wide, so you would need to purchase 8 panels in order to have 8 repeats.

No repeating pattern.
Additional fabric:
Depending on your placement of the wheels, you might want to consider additional fabric that compliments your busy print fabric.

Here are my fabrics. I made 16 stack n whack wheels. Pieced together with 9 Tete a Tete blocks, some Seminole pachwork (tutorial in spanish) on the top and bottom to make it longer and my original fabric as borders.
Tete a Tete Block
Seminole Patchwork along the top.
For the class on January 14th, these are the fabrics that were picked and the wheels that followed.
The last of the turquoise pottery print had been purchased, I was able to get a picture of the red pottery fabric.

We have a finished top, by Ms. Sue... It's beautiful!

If you have any questions at all, feel free to email me:


  1. Paco, can you please let me know how much fabric to buy? I loved the size of the quilt you made for Terrific Tuesday. I am looking forward to this class! Sue

    1. Well, for the watermelon quilt, I was gifted the fabric so I don't know how much there was, except A LOT... 😕 The little pinwheels on the front took at least 2 yards. But when you look for fabric, you want to make sure you have at least 8 repeats in the print. With one repeat anywhere from 9" to 13" wide. If your print repeat is 11.5 iches long, multiply that by 8 total repeats and it will require at least 2.5 yards of fabric.

      Here is the formula: [# of inches in one repeat] × 8 = [# of inches needed],

      then you can take [# of inches needed] ÷ 36 = [# of yards needed].

      11.5" × 8 = 92"
      92" ÷ 36" = 2.555555555 yds

      I can't give you an exact number because all fabric is different. Also, if you want fabric for borders and backing, you might consider more. For the black polka dot fabric, I used 2 yards for the front and couldn't find any more for my binding!

      Anyhoo, if you need me to meet you at Aunt Judy's and go through it with you, that would be so fun! Lol! Send me a text: 575-313-5489 I am only about 10 minutes away.

    2. Oh, and I used a third fabric for tiny cornerstones in the middle of the black squares, and that was about a fat quarter. I'll try to post close-ups in the post above.