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How to Make a Design Wall

I made a design wall for my sewing room, and I am so happy with how it works! I know there are several design wall ideas out there, some are good for portable projects (think flannel-backed tablecloths that can be rolled up and packed away quilt blocks and all).

I was working in my temporary sewing room while my new workshop was under construction. The space is small, without a lot of wall space, so I needed a semi-portable design wall that I could move around the room. It also needed to be rigid and stand up on its own without being heavy.

I bought a huge piece of foam insulation board at the hardware store. This stuff is 2” deep and comes in a 4’ x 8’ sheet (or you can get it in 2’ x 8’ as well). It doesn't weigh anything, I could easily pick it up with one hand. I cut it shorter by about 16” so it was 48” x 80” of usable design wall.

I bought 2 ½ yds of white polar fleece. It comes in 58” wide yardage, so I just bought enough length to wrap over the ends. This is the basic inexpensive polar fleece that can be found at most of the big box fabric stores like JoAnn Fabrics. You can do any color you like. Maybe next time, I'll use the light gray color.

I laid the polar fleece out on the floor and centered the insulation board in the middle of it. I pulled the corners tight, around the board, and used long straight pins (about 1 ½”) to hold the corners tight.

I worked my way down the sides, tugging at the polar fleece, and poking pins in at a steep angle to hold it in place. It isn’t an exact science and the polar fleece will stretch so you can get a snug fit easily.

Once the corners and edges were secure, I stood it up to ensure the front wasn’t sagging in any spots. I love how rigid this design wall is- a floppy design wall drops your blocks all the time and that can be very frustrating.

I set this one up in front of the closet doors, but I can move easily it when I need to access the closet.

One of the nice things about using polar fleece, instead of batting to wrap the insulation board, is just how clingy it is. Blocks of all sizes cling to it with no problems!

I can’t believe how easy it is to keep clean. I use a lint roller and it doesn’t stretch it out or pull fibers off like it would with batting.

I'm so happy with this design wall! I plan to make four to six more, just like it, to cover a big wall in my studio! No more floor layouts for me :) Hahaha!

Happy Sunday everyone,


Follow all my quilty adventures on Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest. Visit my Youtube channel for free tutorials and tips. If you like my patterns, you can buy them on Etsy, and here on the website.


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