Designing a quilt pattern can be quite intricate, but it doesn't have to be. When designing your first pattern, use a simple idea to create an all-over quilt pattern with squares. For the purpose of this project, design a quilt pattern with 6-inch squares. As you become more familiar and confident in the process, you can move toward more complex quilt pattern designs, using different angles and shapes.
Calculate the quilt size you desire. Use ¼-inch square to represent each 6-inch fabric square. If you are designing a quilt top to measure 48 inches square, you would mark off 8 squares across and 8 squares down to create a block on your graph paper. Use this process to create the size of quilt you prefer.
Make several of these, same size, blocks of squares, on your paper. This will give you plenty of practice blocks.
Make patterns from the ¼-inch squares, within the block you have marked off. Use colored pencils to represent the fabric used to create patterns. Consider a diagonal pattern or blocks of pattern within the larger block design. Generally, place light colors next to darker colors, which will give you more definition in your quilt design.
Choose fabrics that represent the colored squares of your pattern, when your pattern is complete. Later, when cutting out your fabric, don't forget to add ¼ inch on each side for the seam allowance.
Draw an outside border around your quilt design, 6 inches on each side. When designing a quilt top that will display a pattern, such as this project, the best borders are best when on the plain side. With this in mind, choose a solid color for your borders.
Sketch out a quilting design, with your pencil on the graph paper, for your borders. Since you've used squares in your quilt design, you may want to use flowers, vines or another geometric design, such as diamonds. This will give you a nice balance to your quilt.
Plan the quilt border design in matching thread or use a contrasting color quilt thread. Choose another color in your quilt top, such as red borders with yellow quilt thread. Mark the quilting border design with the colored pencil, on the graph paper, which depicts the quilt thread you will use.