Here’s a little secret about a duvet. People who don’t sew are really impressed when you tell them you’ve just finished making duvet for your comforter (immediately after you explain what a duvet is). When this happens… simply smile, accept the ohhhs and ahhhs, but do not go on to explain that a duvet is really just a giant bag. There’s nothing wrong with being impressive! Besides, we’ve amped up the awe-inspiring potential by creating a unique patchwork design with big, beautiful blocks of solid color in a Mondrian style of random intersecting rectangles. This clean, modern look is also referred to as Color Block, which is very much on-trend with the latest in home décor. We used a selection of calming colors from Michael Miller’s Cotton Couture collection. With 118 colors of Cotton Couture solids to choose from, including 28 new tones that came out this Spring, you’re sure to find the perfect combination for your bedroom.
Do you love the matching long bolster pillow in the photo above? We have a tutorial for it as well!
The steps below are quite detailed, as are all our Sew4Home tutorials. However, if you are brand new to patchworking, you may want to take a peek at our Quilting Basics Series before you start. This five-part series starts here with Tools, Notions & Other Stuff You Need.
You’ll also notice today’s project features mostly drawings rather than the instrutional photos you may be used to if you’re a regular S4H follower. When working with something this large, it’s hard to capture the steps in photos without bringing in the S4H crane. Diagrams save the day.
Sewing Tools You Need
- Any Sewing Machine (we recommend the Janome Horizon Memory Craft 15000… not because you have to use a top-of-the-line machine to complete this project, but because this is such a great machine to check out.)
- Quarter Inch Seam foot (optional, but very helpful as the majority of the seams are ¼”)
Fabric and Other Supplies
Our sizing is for a queen duvet. It finishes at approximately 88″ long x 86″ wide.
NOTE: We’re sorry, but we are unable to create on-demand revisions to our patterns or projects for size or usage variations. Time and budget constraints do not allow us to create our samples in more than one specific size. Our recommendation is to measure your comforter and compare those measurements to our original dimensions. Do the math to make adjustments and scale the original dimensions up or down. Then use these new measurements to sketch out your own custom grid.
- FIVE coordinating solid colors: we used Turquoise, Kryptonite, Mint, Jade and Luna from the Cotton Couture collection by Michael Miller Fabrics. Our color block blend is shown below and we’ll use these names in our instructions below. Follow our recommendations or choose your own from the 118 Cotton Couture colors.
Turquoise: 2 yards (front only)
Kryptonite: 1¾ yard (front only)
Mint: 4 yards (front and back)
Jade: ¾ yard (front only)
Luna: 4 yards (front and back)
- SIX large buttons; we used 1½” plastic buttons in a blue gray
- All purpose thread to coordinate with fabric
- See-through ruler
- Iron and ironing board
- Scissors or rotary cutter and mat
- Fabric pen or pencil
- Seam gauge
- Seam ripper
- Straight pins
As mentioned above, the cuts below are listed by the fabric colors within our sample. Simply refer to the diagrams above and below to follow along and/or substitute your favorite Cotton Couture colors.
- From the Cotton Couture Turquoise (T), cut the following:
ONE 26½” x 45½” rectangle (T2)
ONE 19½” x 10½” rectangle (T3)
ONE 26½” x 8½” rectangle (T4)
ONE 24½” x 27½” rectangle (T6)
- From the Cotton Couture Kryptonite (K), cut the following:
ONE 18½” x 21½” rectangle (K1)
ONE 13½” x 14½” rectangle (K2)
ONE 14½” x 22½” rectangle (K3)
ONE 15½” x 10½” rectangle (K5)
ONE 47½” x 14½” rectangle (K6)
- From the Cotton Couture Mint (M), cut the following:
ONE 18½” x 15½” rectangle (M1)
ONE 19½” x 6½” rectangle (M3a)
ONE 7½” x 22½” rectangle (M3b)
ONE 26½” x 33½” rectangle (M4)
ONE WOF x 96½” rectangle (Center Back Panel)
- From the Cotton Couture Jade (J), cut the following:
ONE 18½” x 6½” rectangle (J1)
ONE 13½” x 6½” rectangle (J2)
ONE 19½” x 6½” rectangle (J3)
TWO 6½” x 26½” rectangles (J4 and J5)
ONE 6½” x 27½” rectangle (J6)
- From the Cotton Couture Luna (L), cut the following:
ONE 24½” x 21½” rectangle (L1)
ONE 13½” x 25½” rectangle (L2)
ONE 15½” x 16½” rectangle (L5)
ONE 17½” x 27½” rectangle (L6)
ONE WOF x 96½” rectangle, then cut this piece down the center to create TWO pieces 22.5″ x 96.5″ (Left & Right Back Panels)
At Your Sewing Machine & Ironing Board
The duvet top is made up of 23 pieces sewn into six blocks. You’ll create the six individual blocks, then assemble them in the order shown below.
All seam allowances are ¼”. Press all seams towards the darkest color.
- Find pieces: K1, J1, M1 and L1.
- Sew J1 to M1 aligning them along one 18½” side.
- Sew K1 to to left side of the J1/M1 block.
- Sew L1 to to right side of the J1/M1 block.
- Find pieces: K2, J2, T2 and L2.
- Sew J2 to L2 aligning them along one 13½” side.
- Sew K2 to the bottom raw 13½” side of the J2/L2 block.
- Sew T2 to to right side of the J2/L2/K2 block.
- Find pieces: K3, J3, M3a, M3b and T3.
- Sew J3 to M3a aligning them along one 19½” side.
- Sew T3 to the bottom raw 19½” side of the J3/M3a block.
- Sew K3 to M3b aligning them along one 22½” side.
- Sew the K3/M3b block to the J3/M3a/T3 block, aligning the 22½” left raw edge of the K3/M3b block with the 22½” right raw edge of the J3/M3a/T3 block.
- Find pieces: J4, M4 and T4.
- Sew J4 to T4 aligning them along one 26½” side.
- Sew M4 to the bottom raw 26½” side of the J4/T4 block.
- Find pieces: J5, K5 and L5.
- Sew K5 to L5 aligning them along one 15½” side.
- Sew J5 to the right raw 26½” side of the K5/L5 block.
- Find pieces: J6, K6, L6 and T6.
- Sew J6 to T6 aligning them along one 27½” side.
- Sew L6 to the right raw 27½” side of the J6/T6 block.
- Sew K6 to the top 47½” side of the J6/T6/L6 block.
Assemble the blocks
- Sew Block #2 to Block #3, aligning the bottom of Block #2 with the top of Block #3.
- Sew Block #5 to the upper right corner of Block #2.
- Stop your seam ½” from the bottom. This will help later when you add Block #6.
- Sew Block #1 to the top of Block #2/Block#5.
- Sew Block #4 to the right edge of Block #1/Block #5.
- Sew Block #6 into the final empty space. To attach this block, you need to sew an interior corner.
- Pin right sides together and then stitch along the TOP of Block #6 first.
- Remove the duvet top from the machine.
- Pin Block #6 to the right side of Blocks #2 and #3.
- Drop your needle back in at the exact corner point and continue the seam all the way to the bottom edge of block #3.
Duvet envelope back
- Find the three 96½” panels: the main Mint panel and the two Luna side panels.
- With right sides together, pin a side panel to the left and the right of the center panel.
- Stitch both long seams with a ⅝” seam allowance.
NOTE: We used a ⅝” seam allowance because these cuts are WOF (width of fabric). A ⅝” seam allowance insures none of the selvedge will be exposed next to the seam.
- Press the seams towards the side panels.
- Cut 22″ from one end of this three-panel unit.
- Across one end of this 22″ three-panel unit, make a 2″ double fold hem. To do this, fold under the raw edge 2″ and press. Fold under an additional 2″ and press again.
- Topstitch across the full width, staying close to the inside folded edge.
- Following the instructional manual for your machine, make SIX 2″ horizontal buttonholes. The buttonholes should be centered top to bottom within the hem and evenly spaced across the width. We placed ours from both sides at 10″, 22″ and 35″.
- Across one end of remaining long three-panel unit, make a 1″ double fold hem. To do this, fold under the raw edge ½” and press. Fold under an additional ½” and press again.
- Topstitch across the full width, staying close to the inside folded edge.
Assembling front to back
- The final assembly is very similar to making a giant envelop back pillow.
NOTE: We chose the envelope style opening for this duvet over the more traditional “open sack” variety, which usually has buttons or ties visible along the bottom edge to secure the comforter inside the duvet. Buttons or ties would have been too busy for this sleek Mondrian-style design. Instead, an envelope opening allows the bottom and top edges to be as clean and straight as the sides.
- Lay duvet cover right side up on a flat surface. It’s big… that probably means the floor.
- Lay the smaller buttonhole back piece along the bottom of the duvet, right side down. Align the three raw edges of the back piece with the bottom and side raw edges of the duvet top. The hemmed edge with the buttonholes is pointing up, towards the middle of the duvet.
- Lay the larger plain back piece right side down. Align its three raw edges with the top and side raw edges of the duvet top and overlap the buttonhole piece until the two back pieces are exactly the same height as the duvet top.
- Pin all the way around.
- Stitch around all four sides, using a ¼” seam allowance.
- Turn right side out through the envelope opening.
- Poke out the corners so they are nice and sharp. Press flat from both sides.
- Open the buttonholes and mark the position for each of the six buttons.
- Handstitch the buttons in place.
- Insert your comforter through the opening and button it up.
Project Design: Alicia Thommas
Sample Creation and Instructional Outline: Debbie Guild