Quilt Kits–Yea or Nay?

Vintage Quilting, LKennedyGood Morning, Quilters!

Let’s get right into it….

What’s YOUR opinion on quilt kits?Vintage Quilting, LKennedy

I’m of two minds…

Sometimes I think– Why re-invent the wheel?  When you’re drawn to a quilt because it is perfect…why not just buy the kit?

Vintage Quilting, LKennedy

On the other hand, if someone has already made the perfect quilt (and created the pattern) —why copy?–why not try to be original?

Vintage Quilting, LKennedy

I have made several “kit quilts”.  Here are my criteria:

  1. I will buy a kit when I am learning a new technique (like the Baltimore Album quilt-Friends of Baltimore project I am working on).  For this quilt, I wanted to focus on learning complex appliqué and not on choosing fabrics, etc.
  2. I will buy a kit if it requires a lot of fabric that I don’t normally keep in my stash. (Wool or 30’s for example.)
  3. I will buy a kit when it’s on sale–even if I am not sure if  I will make it.  (Impulse buy–not smart–don’t do this!)
  4. I will buy a kit when I don’t want to think too much but I want to be assured of good results…perhaps for a quilt retreat weekend.


What about YOU?  Do you ever buy quilt kits?  Do you prefer kits?  How do you decide?

Do you have any links to fun kits?  (I’m an enabler…–so much for The Big Three!)

We’d LOVE to hear!

Happy Stitches!


PS…This entire post is a grand justification for me just purchasing The Gravity Kit here…Anyone want to play along??? (Guilt loves company!)-

–My sister made me do it (Criteria Excuse #5)

PPS…All tutorials, images and information are the property of Lori Kennedy at The Inbox Jaunt and are intended for personal use only.  Feel free to re-blog, pin or share with attribution to The Inbox Jaunt.  For all other purposes, please contact me at lckennedy@hotmail.com.  Thanks!

150 thoughts on “Quilt Kits–Yea or Nay?

  1. I would love to pick out my fabric, but not all quilt shops carry it ‘all’. I live in the wilds of Nebraska and I work full time. It is much easier to buy a kit. The biggest draw back is you can’t change the pattern to much or you find they changed some of the fabric on you…boo!

    • I couldn’t read all of the replies but I didn’t see anyone mentioning $$. It seems to me kits are much more expensive than when I buy my fabrics separately. Sometimes I can even use a fabric I already have!

      • There is an upcharge on kits, but you might save money if many of the fabric requirements are fractions of a yard and you typically buy from places that do not allow cuts that are less than 1/2 yard.

  2. I don’t think I’ve ever bought a kit. Not that I’m against doing that, it’s just that there’s often something I’d want to do differently. I do buy patterns sometimes, but I usually make changes to them, too, so it’s best to buy my own fabric. Have fun with your new kit! (no guilt allowed)

  3. Yes l have bought a few kits. It’s fun , a no brainer,which works very well sometimes.
    Found a baby Quilt that l fell in love with, the store didn’t have all the fabric so l ordered it on line as a kit..

  4. I like to put my own take on patterns so I haven’t ever bought a kit. Perhaps one day I’ll come across one that shouts perfection to my tastes and I’ll buy it !

  5. I’ve only ever bought one kit – Michele Hill’s William Morris, Album Sampler Quilt – because the fabrics were so beautiful I couldn’t imagine it made in anything else.

  6. I love kits. They are great for beginning quilters and you can branch out on your own after you have a couple under your belt.

  7. Love this question. I have never bought a kit. My quilting friend only buys kits. I don’t buy kits because I want my quilt to be different. I like looking for my own fabrics and changing the design a little. Also, I have been know to make a few cutting mistakes and I would be too stressed about not having enough fabric if I didn’t buy my own.

  8. I have bought 3 quilt kits primarily because I was stunned by them. One was a complex applique and buying the kit save me time. Another featured Lana Jansdottir fabric. And the third was an adorable baby quilt. The key is that I loved the fabrics! 90% of the items I sew are non-kitted. Although I want to buy a McKenna Ryan laser cut quilt kit at some future date.

  9. Have to say I agree with you 100%! Really don’t buy it just because it is on sale……if you don’t love it it is doubtful that you will make it.
    I have many kits I need to make but sometimes I get joy from just looking at the fabrics
    and reading the instructions.
    Happy Sewing

  10. The last kit I purchased was AWFUL!!! Half of the star patterns on the quilt pictured were not included – it was a shop hop quilt and they didn’t get the patterns or fabric for them so they substituted a pattern for an Ohio Star for all the awesome star blocks on the quilt. They didn’t even bother to put a notice on it that some blocks had been substituted – if they had, it would NOT have come home with me!! I have also found that many kits leave no room for squaring up or any little error in the fabric that is included. I have a large stash of fabrics and really don’t need any more…I need to use what I have first, so maybe after making 1,000 quilts or so, I can buy more fabric!!!

  11. I do both. I use my own fabric and I buy kits. Sometimes i see a quilt hanging in a shop that I really want to make. Instead of purchasing the pattern separately and all the fabric to make it, I will buy the kit. It is also easier to pack when traveling.

  12. I have quilted with and without kits. Often a kit will simplify acquiring fabrics, especially as I live in a rural area. However, I also take scraps and cut them into charm squares, layer cake squares, and jelly roll strips. I have an “ice storm” quilt I made from charm squares I cut when our power was out for five days. Sometimes, if I am making a quilt as a gift, I will use a kit that the recipient likes.

  13. I know some quilters that only buy quilt kits, as they say it helps them not end up with excess stash. When I look at my stash, I must admit I could learn from their perspective. For me, I pretty much align with your criteria for kits, with two additional thoughts:
    – kits on sale that I like and I know they are a better deal than buying yardage on my own
    – kits for fun and fast projects that can be handy to have for a retreat that you don’t have a project ready to take.

    I’ve also periodically gone thru my stash and pulled fabrics together, that would work well in a kit, even though I didn’t have a pattern planned. As the time comes for another project I’ll look at those kits and see if I have a design in mind that I could use these “kitted” fabrics without having to buy more fabric, or with only needing to buy a little more fabric. This sort of supply kit has often helped expedite working on a project, as well as using fabric in my stash.


  14. Sometimes you just have to choose every square inch of fabric that will be used in your project. Other times – you just want to quickly have all your ingredients in one nice, tidy package. . . And sometimes, it’s more about the process – a new technique, motif, etc you will learn or use – and a kit may fill that need nicely. No worries about stash here….I have a stash of kits as well as many fabrics….sigh. ?

  15. I usually fall in love with colors and when a quilt that I love is in a kit, I’m tempted. What stops me is that the search for just the right fabrics is what I enjoy most. It gives me a purpose at the quilt shop! I have bought two kits in the past few years and they are both still sitting here. I don’t think I’ve invested enough of myself in them to make me excited.

  16. I usually buy kits from quilt shows, where that product isn’t available to me locally. Most of the time kits are made up from a complete fabric line. If the fabric is available in yardage I will almost always pick that option as I have made mistakes, or the quilt kit was cut short or they sub a fabric you don’t like ,etc …meanwhile it is years later that I am putting it together and it’s too late to purchase more so you end up having to be “creative” anyway!!:)

  17. I’m on a limited income, so I just simply can’t afford to buy kits. They are SOOO expensive!! I’ve bought boatloads of fabrics at insanely reduced prices (estate sales and such) and have been given even more fabric, so unless I can buy just the pattern for a quilt I love, or find a free pattern online, I just go with something I love and can get reasonably.


  18. I do like kits. I like interesting packaging , a tablerunner in a to go box. I am also a sucker for fabric bundles. Recently I purchased the Gravity quilt kit, when it arrived I used it to “shop” my stash and picked batiks to make a “practice” quilt. Both quilt tops are stunning, and the batiks were more forgiving than the solids all of those different shapes were a bit intimidating but I am very pleased I did it this way.

  19. I’m not a kit girl. To me, the best part of a new project is choosing fabrics. And if there is extra in my stash, so much the better. I MIGHT make an exception for that if I was looking at, say, an applique pattern with lots of tiny pieces in many, many colors. I have no aversion, OTOH, to buying thread packs for embroidered quilts. Saves me time and aggravation of having to hit multiple stores for all the colors.

    I don’t really have a lot of good quilt stores nearby. But I DO have a pretty good list of online shops I frequent. And a couple of Etsy sellers who will sometimes to custom listings for me.

  20. I still consider myself a “newbie” since I’ve only been quilting just over 2 1/2 years. I have bought several kits – but only on clearance (or GOOD sale). Using the kits, has increased my confidence level in choosing my own fabrics for other patterns. Recently, I had to get a quilt done “very quickly” and found a kit on clearance that was perfect…especially since I didn’t have time to travel to “shop” for different fabrics. I need to travel over an hour for “quilt shop quality” fabrics, and all winter long, have to order online (one quilt shop in the FL Keys, and she is very small with limited selection 🙁 ). As for the Gravity quilt…enjoy! That is one I would definitely do the “kit” for based on what is in my stash, IF I was going to make it.

  21. I buy some kits and make some from my stash. I do find that I don’t always like all the fabrics in a kit, so I substitute. It puts my spin on the pattern and makes it more my own.

  22. I rarely buy patterns and I don’t think I’ve ever bought a kit. Part of the fun for me is figuring out how something is done and what I like about it, making do with the fabrics from my stash, and making something that reflects my own aesthetic. But then again, I’m mainly attracted to traditional quilts and those are pretty much always in the public domain.

    The biggest problem I have with the fabric in the kits is that there’s, invariably some fabric that I just don’t like, but if I replace it with something from my stash, I end up with the ugly fabric to return to my stash squatting like a toad until I exorcise it to put in my Guild auction.

  23. while choosing and buying fabric is probably my favorite part of quilting, I do buy kits when the price is right or if I want the pattern and it’s more reasonable to buy the kit than pay for an expensive pattern.

  24. I am not a big fan of a quilt kit. I prefer to make a pattern from fabrics that I like. I can also make it the size that would work for me as all the quilts I make are not necessarily bed quilts.

  25. I enjoy not knowing exactly what the quilt will look like until I finish it. Even though I am occasionally drawn to a kit, I miss the anticipation that comes with creating something totally unique, so I try to resist buying them. Unless, as others have said, it is something very unusual in terms of design or fabric that is best remade as it is.

  26. I like the thought of kits but love when my own fabric comes together for me. To me that adds my personality into a pattern and makes it mine.

  27. I have vowed to buy no more kits. At least 3 different times. But, always find just the one I “need” so continue to purchase at least 6 a year!!lol Now I have vowed to not buy any more patterns until I use some of these I’ve already purchased. Hmm probably won’t make it out of International Quilt Festival in Houston without at least 3 new patterns!lol

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