Quilted Postcards

Here is a quick tutorial on how I put together the postcards I did for the 100 Day Project in 2021. You could really go to town and use your imagination – this is just what I did, but feel free to embellish to your heart’s content 🙂

First, a supply list:

  • Peltex Ultra Firm (Pellon 72F) double sided fusible (if you can’t find the fusible kind, just use glue)
  • Fabric, thread, the usual sewing supplies

Really. That’s it. The whole project is easy and fun – or else doing it 100 times would be way too much work…

Cut the Peltex into 4″ x 6″ rectangles. This is standard postcard size. The double sided fusible is the easiest, but at times during my project I could only find the plain Peltex (still at the height of the pandemic) so I just used school glue to hold my postcard together until I could sew it down.

Make your little mini quilt, or quilt block. For this Dresden Plate, I made around 5″ x 7″ to start, then trimmed down to the required 4″ x 6″.

For the back of the postcard, I used tone-on-tone white or off-white or gray – any color so long as you can see the writing – also cut to 4″ x 6″. To make it look like the back of a real postcard, draw lines with some sort of fabric marker – I used a Frixion pen, first down the middle (3″) then on the right side for the address, draw lines 1/2″ from the bottom and then 1’2″ apart – see below, photo on the left. Then sew on those lines – photo on the right – I realize you can’t see my white thread very well in this photo, but in real life you can 🙂

Next iron, or glue if necessary, your little finished “quilt top” to one side of the Peltex. Always best to read the directions for fusing, but this worked for me: steam setting, and a teflon pressing sheet behind it the Peltex to keep from fusing the other side to my ironing board. Sew through both layers (front and the Peltex) to anchor it well. I usually made sure I did several lines of stitching, but didn’t “quilt” it as much as I would a real quilt.

Once you are happy with the way the front looks, iron or glue the back to the other side of the Peltex – but once you do this, you can’t do any more “quilting” because it would mess up the blank area where you write, so make sure you are finished with the front. Then once both sides are fused, zig zag around the edges and you’re done! For my machine, a setting of 5.0/1.0 for the zig zag worked well – experiment with that on a scrap of fabric first though to make sure you like those settings.

This Dresden block was easy to make fit the required 4″ x 6″ size – but many traditional quilt blocks are square. If you want to do a square block, resize any quilt block to 4″ x 4″ and add some extra fabric to the sides to get to 6″. See the photos below – on the left where I made a square block and added more background to get to 6″, then on the right once I finished it and zig zagged the edges.

Now you are ready to write on the fabric with a Sharpie – of course a fine point tip works better than one of the fat ones. The Peltex is thick enough you don’t need worry the Sharpie will bleed through – I did 100 with no problems.

You can actually put a first class stamp on these and put them in the mail as is – but please note: NOT a postcard stamp, the Peltex makes them too heavy for the cheaper postcard rate – regular letter postage is needed. Instead of just sticking the stamp on, I sewed it onto the back before I zig zagged everything together, just to be sure the stamp didn’t fall off. I sent one to myself before I started the 100 day project, as a test, and I did receive it – but it got a little dirty – which is to be expected as many hands and machines touched it. So I decided for my project I would put them in an envelope so they would arrive in pristine condition. Either way, regular first class postage was enough.

Fun and easy! If you have any questions, give me a shout and I’ll try to help.

Happy making everyone!