Ask Jo: Lots of Miscellaneous


Every so often I get questions from readers that I think other readers would also like to know the answers to.  I often answer them here on the blog.  Today is one of those days.

After seeing this post of some nurse fabric I purchased Jan O asked, “Love the nurse fabrics – What is the name/manufacturer of that fabric line?”

Here is the link to the quilt shop where I purchased the fabric.  I am sure they could send you some.  Here’s what the salvage edges said if you want to try to hunt it down on your own… the blue is Windham Fabrics Calling all Nurses by Whistler Studios Style No 37302.  The white with colored words was a fat quarter and I got the piece with no information on the salvage.  The one with the saying has the informtion Block Prints-  I hope that helps.  I can tell you that the shop carried several other nursing related prints, some with band aides some with other nursing motifs.

After seeing this post on making bread pudding, Sarah Craig asked, “I’m guessing you mean 7 CUPS of bread ends? Is that right?”


Actually not seven cups-seven slices of bread is what you need.

After reading our tutorial with the strip calculator Vicki Walker writes, “I can’t get the calculator to work. I see I am not the only one. Am I doing something wrong or what? Can you please help me?”


I was just over and checked it.  The calculator worked for me!

After seeing this charity quilt Doti asked, “The quilt top you just sent, what size squares did you use? Thanks.”

The quilt was already boxed and gone by the time this question came in and I don’t remember for sure.  If the blocks were cut at 6 1/2″ the quilt would be 66″ x 78″ and I think that’s about the size this quilt was.  If they were cut at 8 1/2″ then the quilt would be 88″ x 104″ and that seems bigger than the quilt was.  I am relatively sure the blocks were cut at 6 1/2″ making them finish at 6″.  I don’t know what pattern this was made from as it was a charity top that was sent to me to quilt.

After Kayla’s post about her potatoes growing in containers Velma asked, “Kayla’s potato growing method is interesting. How do you get the potatoes out of the barrel?”

Easy..dump the barrel over.

After Kelli’s chalk painted entertainment center post Suzanne asked, “I am interested in learning if you have attempted to paint fabric with the chalk paint. At Pinterest, there was a lady who painted the wicker and wood of a chair w/chalk paint and then painted in another color the fabric seat and back. Would like to hear your comments on same.”

We have not tried chalk paint on fabric.  We have seen a few things on line about it but haven’t had the need to try it yet.  I am a little intrigued though.  I think the next time I am at the local thrift store, I buy a pillow and try it out…of course I’ll report back to you then.

For this round…that’s all the questions.  Feel free to ask anything…I’ll try to answer it.

Quilt Strip Calculator


If you are new to the blog, welcome.  You have reached an archived quilting tip.  We typically put up new blog post twice daily so there is always something new and fresh here.  We host lots of giveaways too.  Click HERE and see what’s new today…

Earlier this week we got a HUGE box of fabric that was given to us for charity quilts.  We were so excited that we have more goodies to work with and in turn can help more people.  The box was filled with polka dot fabric and the fabric is a linen.  I am a bit of a purist and didn’t want to mix the fabric with cotton as I want to make sure they’d wash up the same.


There are strips and strips and strips all a variety of sizes.  Our daughter quickly said-  ”It would be perfect for quilt racing!”

Have you made a quilt race quilt before??  What you do is sew the strips together end to end.  Then you bring the long snake ends together, cut it in half and sew them together.  Keep cutting in half and sewing together.  If you haven’t made one before or want directions, here is a YouTube video that shows you how.

I thought the idea was wonderful so I started cutting strips.  The only problem…some strips were 2″ – some 2 1/2″ and some 3 1/2″.  So my question…how many strips did we need to make a charity quilt???  Well, Kayla is a math and computer whiz so she came up with a tool to calculate how many strips and it’s the neatest thing ever!!

Simply type in the information and it will let you know how many strips you need to cut to make the quilt size you want.  She is so ingenious that she embedded the calculator into this post and made it available for everyone to use.  Try it.

We put in the information to make a 60 x 80 quilt using 3 1/2″ strips….It says we need 42.666 strips total to make it.  Just round up and cut 43 strips.

We did end up with one problem though...this calculator will tell you how many strips BUT you can’t sew them like you would a jelly roll race quilt.  If you keep sewing in half, in half and in half, you’ll get an awkward size.

Here is our suggestion.  Sew the strips together making a long-long snake.  Then cut 18″ off one end.  Cut that long snake in half and sew the two pieces together.  Now cut the strips the width you want the quilt to finish at…then sew those strips together.

Feel free to stop back and use the calculator anytime.  We are putting a link in tutorial section on the right hand column of the blog…just look for Quilt Strip Calculator.


With the calculator to do the math, it was easy to quickly bundle up enough strips to make a 60″ x 80″ quilt race kit thanks to Kayla’s math and computer skills.

You can find MANY other free patterns on our site by looking under the free patterns tab at the top of the page under our banner.  Stop by again…