Saturday, February 4, 2012

Tutorial: Strip Tube Quilt

Right Turn Only quilt with tutorial!

I’ve had several requests for the pattern I used for my Right Turn Only quilt so I thought I would write up a tutorial showing what I did.  First of all, I would recommend viewing this.  That’s how I learned. 

Secondly, don’t think that you absolutely need a special strip tube ruler.  I used one for this quilt and it was great -  but since then I have found a similar ruler that works as well.  I DID look for a strip tube ruler at a few local quilt shops but none carried it.  I could have ordered one online, but then I’d have to wait for it to arrive.  I’m not good at waiting, so I bought a similar ruler that I found at my favorite shop.  It is an EZ Quilting Companion Angle ruler and it works great!  What you’re looking for are the horizontal lines that will help you line up your ruler with the edge of your strip. 

[edited to add:  Heather found this youtube video showing how to do the same technique using a regular ol' square ruler- very cool!]

Ok – now on to the tutorial!

(I used a jelly roll for this quilt, but you can certainly cut your own 2.5” strips.)

Step 1:

Strip tube tutorial 1

For each set of jelly roll strips, you’ll need one strip of background fabric cut at 4.5” x width of fabric.

Step 2:

strip tube tutorial 2

Step 3:

strip tube tutorial 3

Now for this step, I was supposed to line up the 5 1/2” mark on the ruler with the stitching line there along the bottom.  Instead I chose to line up the 6” line with the bottom edge of the tube.  As long as your top point is below the seam line, and as long as you are consistent with each tube you cut it should be fine! 

Step 4:

strip tube tute 4

Keep that end piece.  I’ll show you later what you can do with those!

Step 5:

strip tube tute 5

strip tube tute 6

strip tube tute 7

Step 6:

strip tube tute 8

strip tube tute 9

strip tube tute 10

Take your blocks and arrange them as desired.  I chose this layout:

strip tube tute 11

I had some extra squares that didn’t have a match (like in step 6) so I kept them:

strip tube tute 12

I ended up adding in the bits leftover from step 4. 

hometown healing quilt front

I enjoyed making these quilts and using the strip tube process.  My blocks came together quickly and I love the final quilt! To see another option for strip tube blocks watch this

Any questions?  Leave me a comment and I’ll clarify anything that needs it!


  1. That is cool. Sewing down both sides is a great trick

  2. This is great! Thanks for sharing. :)

  3. Back in the early 90s one of Eleanor Burns' Quilt in a Day books was for an Amish quilt that did the same method, but using four strips of color to the backing and a right angle ruler to cut the triangles. I made a twin size in 'Amish colors' back then, and it was easy once you understood the method of cutting! Thanks for the tutorial, a good one to have on hand for the strips of scraps I'm collecting!

  4. Is the top point of the strip tube ruler a 90 degree angle?? I'm thinking you could make your own template out of stiff cardboard rather than buying the ruler.

  5. It is a 90 degree angle. Cardboard would certainly work, or one corner of an easy-to-find square ruler.

  6. Hi there. I finished my strip tube quilt using Reunion and I love it. I posts it to flickr and credited your blog. If you would like to see it, it's at Carlaf2

    I couldn't find an e-mail on your blog so am doing it this way, sorry

  7. Don't know how I missed this. What a fun technique and such cool results! Thank you!!

  8. Thanks for the very clearly written tutorial. Your quilt looks fabulous. I can't wait to make one of my own.

  9. I love this quilt! Thanks for sharing the tutorial. Can you tell me how big the finished quilt is and did you use the entire jelly roll?

  10. CJ - The finished quilt measured 54" x 65"

    I did use the entire jelly roll (some of the triangles were used on the quilt back) and there were enough small pieces left over to make a scrappy baby quilt:

  11. What a great idea. Thanks for the tutorials.

  12. Love this! Especially since you could use any square ruler with a 45 degree angle line on it. No need to purchase another ruler. Thank you for the tutorial.

  13. Would you mind me asking which jelly roll you used for this quilt? I'm new to quilting and I'm having a hard time finding jelly rolls that would be appropriate for a boy's quilt. I have 3 boys ages 11, 10 and 7 and they love quilts. But, they don't love all the flowers and girly colors ;)

    Thanks in advance!

    1. Kelly - this was a Reunion (by Sweetwater) jelly roll. They may be tough to find now since it is an older line. There are a few more recent lines out now that might work for your boys - PB&J by moda, Simple Marks Summer (Moda), One For the Boys (Riley Blake) are a few that I can think of. Take a look at these two online shops for more jelly roll options:

  14. Couldn't you just use an ordinary ruler or a very large set square instead of a strip tube ruler? It might involve a bit more math and a bit more time but it would still get the craft project done I think. Thanks for going through the process and using pictures to make the steps easy to understand.

  15. Very pretty quilt and I've seen tube whatever you call it on Missouri star and love it! I came here from someone's blog (Christmas quilt) who referenced your blog. I'll follow you on Bloglovin since it looks like your blog is one I'll enjoy!

  16. I just love this quilt! I found it when I was searching for "tent quilt blocks". It's just the kind of inspiration I was looking for. I hope it's ok, I'm planning to use this block design for my do. Good Stitches circle, but I've come up with a different method for piecing - only because I don't want to alternate the order of the strips. Thanks for sharing this tutorial!!

  17. Couldn't you just use an ordinary ruler or a very large set square instead of a strip tube ruler? It might involve a bit more math and a bit more time but it would still get the craft project done I think

  18. i have been looking for a new way to use my strip ruler, still in pristine and unused condition so now I can give it some work to do, thank you so much, love the quilts you make!

  19. its not 1.34am her in New Zealand, it is 7.34 pm, night time!! hehehe~

  20. Thank you so much for this tutorial. It looks jolly simple and I shall look forward to trying it.

  21. I love this quilt! Thanks for sharing the tutorial. Can you tell me how big the finished quilt is and did you use the entire jelly roll?

    1. Hi there

      The finished quilt measured 54" x 65" and I believe I did use the whole jelly roll.

  22. How much background fabric did you have to get??

  23. This comment has been removed by the author.

  24. very Help Full Post. Look Some Different here at SSB Interview


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