How do you determine how much fabric is needed if you are creating your own design?  I know the blocks I want to use but I need to know how to determine how much fabric I need to buy.  I am using 5 different colors.

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I just visited www.thousandsofbolts.com for the first time and I think I'm in love!!!  At the very  bottom of the page you can find video tutorials. And within those tutorials are 4 topics that are free to use.  Now I don't have to rack my brain to figure out how much yardage I need.  The tutorials help me design my quilt by blocks and tells me how much I need to buy.  Check it out.  The Color Picker helps you find a specific color from the fabrics they have in stock.  The Color Matcher helps you match colors together.  The Designers' Palette and Quilters' Tool Box helps you put your quilt together and see it before you make it.  I intend to use this a lot.  And it's free!
I take a wild guess, then buy more than what I think....That way there is some for the stash. :)

I hate to say this but, I use math.  Your base number is always 40 inches in width.  Divide 40 by the size of the squares you need to cut.  We'll just go with 4 inches.  You can get 10 4 inch squares out of 40 inches in width.  My pattern calls for 40 squares.  That means I'll need 4 4 inch strips.  That's 16 inches so half a yard will do.

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