Pre-cut Layer Cakes for quilting are 10″ squares of cotton quilting fabric that typically come in a stack of about 40 squares. Some stacks have all unique fabrics and others have duplicates of the more subtle blender fabrics in a fabric collection. Each stack contains fabric from a particular fabric line and/or designer and they all work in harmony.
How Many Layer Cake Blocks In A Yard?
Each block is 10″ and 10″ square. There are 36″ in a yard of fabric, averaging 42″ wide.
If you were to cut the 10″ blocks by hand, the most you could get out of a yard is 3 deep (30″) by 4 wide (40″). That’s 12 layer cake blocks in a yard. You would actually need .83 yards ( 7/8 yd) of fabric for 12 blocks.
Are Layer Cakes Worth The Price?
A typical 40-block stack of layer cake squares is $39.95 and the average price per yard of the high quality quilting fabric it contains is about $10.50/yd. Here’s what the math looks like. 12/.83 x 40/x = 2.77 yards of fabric. (Interesting enough, a jelly roll has 2.78 yards of fabric in it, almost exactly the same as the layer cake.) So 2.77 yds x $10.50/yd = $29.09. That’s a difference of $10.86. In my personal opinion, making a quilt out of layer cakes is not exactly economical. You could buy a 1/3 of a yard of many different fabrics and cut the squares yourself. Because the blocks are so big, it’d be worth it. It all depends on whether or not a fabric store has all the bolts of fabric contained in a single layer cake stack.
Quasi Layer Cake Quilt
For Christmas this past year, I made my grandson a quilt. Most fabrics in a layer cake are too girly, so I bought yardage and cut the blocks myself. I also had a bunch of fabric in my stash, including some fat quarters. On a perfect day, you can get 2-10″ blocks from a fat quarter, but not from the ones I bought from Beverly Fabrics. Thanks a lot, Timeless Treasures! Because of that, I had to cut 9″ squares. I’ll explain down below how I used them.
I used fabrics that had prints of his favorite things like lady bugs. I made that the focus fabric. Because it was red and black, I mainly wanted to keep the entire quilt red, black and white, but I threw in some green because I found a hecka cute Halloween spider print. Little black spiders with red eyes and tiny little white fangs on a green background. It was way too cute to pass up.
It needed just a little pop so I added a marigold fabric. I had broccoli, green beans, lady bugs, spiders, skulls (he likes zombies), and cats. I used some blenders with black ants on red, black ants on white, black cow spots on white and black dots on lime green.
This is a cell phone pic so it’s kinda blurry.
You slice a block once vertically and then again horizontally. Here’s my cutting diagram for my 9″ block.
That gives you 4 pieces:
- 1 @ 6″ x 6″
- 2 @ 2″ x 6″
- 1 @ 3″ x 3″
When you sew the blocks together, you just flip that right side so the 3″ block is on top and the 2″x6″ block is on the bottom. Then when you lay it out, you just twist and turn the blocks how ever you like. Here’s what one finished block looks like.
Here’s a video from Missouri Star Quilting Company on how to do it. Her dimensions are a little different than mine because she’s using an 10″ block and mine’s only 9″, but the technique is the same.
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