Thursday, July 7, 2011

Mini Design Board Tutorial...

I'm excited to show you how 
I make my design boards 
that I told you about in my
I made 6 of them that
 measure 10" x 10" to use 
when making my 6" blocks...
of course you can make 
as many as you want and 
in any size according 
to the projects that
 you are currently working on.

 I have several sizes that 
I use all the time...
including ones that are as large 
as the foam board that I use 
to make them with.

You can get foam core board at any office supply store and usually most department, grocery and drug stores sell them too. They are with the poster board.

I got these at Walmart....Elmers brand...2 in a package that each measure 20" x 30".
They are about 1/4" thick which is great for the mini boards.

I can get six 10" x 10" mini boards out of one foam board....10 x 10 is the perfect size for the 6" blocks used in the Farmers Wife quilt.

I use my rotary cutter and ruler to cut them to size....but this is the important part so listen up!...
I use my OLD DULL BLADE that I have saved
just for this reason.
I would suggest that you never use a new rotary blade because it will certainly be an old one by the time you finish!...LOL
I simply measure and cut just like I do with a piece of fabric...but then I turn it over and make a cut on the other side in the same place as well.

After cutting from both easily snaps apart:)

Continue cutting your board into the sizes desired.

I use my paper scissors to trim off any foam that sticks out from the edge.

This is also a good way to use up small pieces of leftover batting.
I use thin batting made of 100% cotton or a blend of 80% cotton/20% poly.
Either would work for this project.
Lay your foam board down on your batting to use as a guide and cut your batting about 1" bigger than your board all the way around.

Using a hot glue gun, begin on one side and place a line of glue on the board ...
and glue the batting down.
The extra batting should hang over the edge.

Place your glue close to the edge but not right on it so that when you
press the batting down...
 the hot glue doesn't run down the sides:)
Glue all the way to the corners of one side...and then glue the batting down on the opposite side, pulling the batting as you go to make sure it fits smoothly.

It will look like this with 2 sides glued down. Now continue and glue the batting to the remaining edges of the foam board.

I only glue batting on one side of the foam board. The other side remains as is:)

After all four edges are glued down and the glue is completely cool...I use my Gingars and trim the batting even with the edges.
Easy-peasy don't ya think?!...I think a design board is a very useful tool besides being inexpensive and sew simple to make:)....I love them!
You can use the design boards just like this or you can make them fun and cute by covering the edges with fabric.
My motto is...if it's worth's worth making it cute!!
Tomorrow I will show you how to cover the get your boards finished today so that you will be ready to roll!
Just so you will need a
2 1/2" x  Width of Fabric strip for each
 10 x 10 mini design board.
You can see how I finish my design board edges with the fabric strip by clicking
So I'll type at ya the meantime...have fun making your boards and be careful not to burn your fingers!


antique quilter said...

great idea, I use boards like this to carry from my cutting table to my sewing machine table blocks that have lots of pieces so I can keep them straight while sewing!
have to make a few for applique projects
love how pretty they look

sewprimitive karen said...

Those are pretty, Lori. And I like your nail polish :-).

May Kristin said...

Very clever! Looking forward to your next post!

Cindy said...

Love this idea! Thanks for sharing!

Thimbleanna said...

Such a cute idea Lori -- thanks for the tutorial!

Mary Ann said...

Great idea! Useful AND adorable ;-) Would you please consider linking up to Toot-torial Tuesday at I'd love to feature you!!

Cathy H. said...

What a wonderful idea!! Thanks so much for sharing the tutorial with us!! I'll definitely be making several of these! And, I'll be covering the edges, because yours are so pretty!

Needled Mom said...

Very cute and very handy!

Auntie Em said...

Thanks for the tutorial. Love the manicure!

Nedra said...

You DO make everything cute! I remember the first time seeing your design boards and they are the best idea!!

Mabel said...

These are great! Looking forward to tomorrow's post. And you are so right, if it's worth making, it's worth making it cute! Thanks for sharing!

my happy bluebird said...

Thanks so much for these instructions -- this looks very easy to do! :-)

PamKittyMorning said...

I'm looking forward to the completion!!! the edge makes it cute and no one does cute cuter than you. xo

Material Girls said...

I love it!! I am doing the farmers wife quilt along too!! I so need to make one of these! Another cute idea Lori.

Sue said...

I'm going to make a few...not that I have several projects on the go at once...Thanks for the tutorial.

Anita said...

Thanks for the great tutorial! As soon as you mentioned them on your previous blog I wanted to make some...I guess I'll have to hurry for tomorrow...'cause they gotta be cute!

Deb said...

They are so pretty...and they would make a different fun gift for a quilter friend...I think I know what a few friends might be getting this Christmas!!

Deb from

Vicki Miller said...

I am a new reader of your blog and as I was scrolling through it, I saw the live feed. I thought that if you ever looked at the live feed you might wonder "Who looked at my blog from Baku?" Most people don't know where Baku is or even that it exists. LOL! I am a US expat living in Baku, Azerbaijan on the Caspian Sea (Google Map it) am on the opposite side of the world! I will be going to the states next week and I am so glad that I found your "mini design board" instructions. We have a quilting group here in Baku, but supplies is limited for quilting so everything we have for a project has to be brought in.....I will be making some of these while home and everyone here will want some, I'm sure! They will be lightweight in my luggage so maybe I better make extras to share! I will be watching for new ideas and will go back and read past posts! said...

trop beau ce tuto bravo les coloris superbes bises jojo

Teri Myers said...

Lori, I am new to your blog. I really enjoy your fun filled,heart-warming refreshing ideas and vintage style. You have inspired me to start some sewing projects after quite a break. Thanks for your inspiration and these really useful, cute boards.

Beeshebags said...

I've only just stumbled upon your blog, and know I'm going to be reading until the wee small hours now....but boo hoo, I love these boards, but I don't think we have Foam core board in Australia...I wonder if we have something similar, might have to print a copy of the foam core board and take it to a couple of places to see if anything similar is you use the foam board because it's lightweight? Coz I'm thinking I could substitute it for/with thin mdf if I can't find anything else right??? lol Hugs Naomi

ferne said...

Have I missed the part where you show how you did the edge of the board? I am going to Walmart today! This looks like a really helpful idea for me who always looses the order of things from the cutting board to the machine!

RobynLouise said...

Oh yay. Just found your blog and I'm going to make one (or more) of these. Went on a net search and we have a range of thicknesses of foamcore in Australia and some of them are self adhesive :)! It's used by artists/framers for photo mounting so a good art shop should stock it.
Off to add this to my 'shopping' list, lol.
Robyn in Oz

Christine L said...

I found your design boards via Pinterest, and I LOVED them So much I made some today! THANK YOU SO VERY MUCH for the Tutorial!
I am getting ready to start my FWQ as well, not a FW, but still love the quilt! HAPPY QUILTING... LOVE YOUR BLOG TOO!! :)

elnorac said...

Thank you so, so much for this excellent tutorial! I'm sure a design board (or 10) will be very useful.

Julie B. said...

Thank you! What a great idea! What is the biggest size you have made?

Julie B. said...

Thank you! What a great idea! What is the biggest size you have made?

Tammy said...

Great tutorial! I'm going to try this out. I just discovered your blog today--and LOVE it!

Unknown said...

Hi I love your blog and I love these little design boards! I hope you don't mind but I have blogged about them on my blog and linked you. I would love for you to stop by

Christine said...

Just made myself a mini design board. Thanks for a great idea and clear directions.

Unknown said...

I'm definitely making several of these to keep AND give !

Johanna said...

Just finished my 6 design boards!
I'm still picking the extra hot glue off my fingers.
These are such a great idea.

The Crafty Hen said...

I am a beginning quilter and starting my first Granny Square Quilt and I am SO glad to run across your site! I am even more glad to find your tutorial on the boards! I was wondering how I was not going to get lost as I sew the squares! Thank you for all you do to help us along. I am inspired!

cindyann said...

I LOVE this idea, I'll be making my boards as soon as I get the supplies. This will help me stay organized for sure. Thanks so much for posting this tutorial.

Maggie @alifewellstitched said...

I am going to a retreat in March and I am going to make a couple of these to bring along. I am forever losing pieces on my way from the cutting table to my sewing machine. We always kid that you need the death grip on the way back, but that even fails sometimes. On my way to the store to get some foam core. Thanks for the tutorial.

The LadyBugs Garden said...

I so love these. I made several different sizes. Beautiful colors are important!

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