Monday, 21 February 2011

Quilt Pattern for Moda Jelly Roll Quilt

Do you know what I love about the Moda jelly rolls?  Apart from the gorgeous fabric, of course.  It's that the edges of the strips have all been cut by whatever is the mechanical equivalent of pinking shears, so there's no fraying and threads hanging out from the fabric edges.  I made this jelly roll quilt from a Moda Rural Jardins jelly roll plus a yard each of two Moda fabrics, one dark and one light, and I'm really pleased with the way that it turned out.

The quilt block that I used for this jelly roll quilt is called variously Path and Stiles, Far West, Stile and Paths, and it is also a sort of variation of the Shoofly quilt block.

I began by sorting the strips first into red and blue and then into light and dark within each colour.  Sew together light, dark and light strips along the length of the strip and then dark, light, dark strips along the length.
Press and cut the dark, light, dark strips across the width at 2.1/2" intervals.

Press and cut the light, dark, light strip across the width to give four 6.1/2" squares and at least four 2.1/2" strips.
Using two of the dark, light, dark strips and one light, dark, light strip, make a nine patch square as shown on the right.  You will need four of these for each jelly roll quilt block.

From the additional two Moda fabrics, cut a 6.3/4" strip across the width of each fabric and cut into 6.3/4" squares.  You will need 24 squares each of light and dark fabric.  With right sides together place a dark square and light square together and mark a line along the diagonal.  Sew a seam 1/4" either side of the marked line and cut along the line.  This will give you two squares each made of a dark and a light triangle.

Lay out each Moda jelly roll quilt block with a nine patch square in the middle, a striped square against each side of the nine patch square and a triangle square in each corner as shown.

As you can see, I have kept blue together and red together, but you could make it completely random if you chose.

Sew the rows of the quilt block together and then sew the rows to each other.  I used twelve quilt blocks (six red and six blue) for the moda jelly roll quilt, sewing them together in four rows of three blocks to a row.  I opted to alternate the red and blue quilt blocks, although of course you could sew them together randomly.

At this stage the jelly roll quilt top measures 54" by 72".

As ever, I wanted to use all the fabric so that I wasn't adding to my stash.  I gathered together all the remaining fabric from the jelly roll and sewed strips together where possible and cut everything into 2.1/2" squares or strips.  These were then sewed together into two strips 54" long (27 squares) and two strips 76" long (38 squares) to be used for the jelly roll quilt border.

Here's the video showing the parts of the quilt block:

Sew one 54" strip across the top and bottom of the quilt top and one 78" strip down each side.  I felt really pleased that this just left me with half a dozen 2.1/2" squares from the jelly roll to add to my stash.

The Moda jelly roll quilt top is now complete and ready to be layered, quilted and bound.  I was able to use the fabric left from the two extra fabrics for the binding.

For the binding for the moda jelly roll quilt I cut seven 2.1/2" strips from the remaining red and white fabric and alternated them so that the binding was part red and part white.

Thanks for visiting my blog.
You'll find more ideas for quilting at Ludlow Quilt and Sew.

Amazon also have lots of ideas for jelly roll quilts.

Monday, 7 February 2011

Fabric Hunting in London

Oh what a weekend!  I needed to go to London on Saturday for a service at Southwark Cathedral so I decided that I would arrive bright and early so that I could visit the Designer Guild store.  I was looking for a very special gift for a friend and was sure that I would find some delightful fabric there.

From Euston I decided to walk to Euston Square station so that I would be on the right line for the area that I wanted.  The station was shut.  I walked to the next station, buzzed myself through to the platforms and found that several of the underground lines were shut for maintenance.  Took a train to what I thought was the right stop and asked for directions.  Took a train back two stops to where I should have alighted.

Asked directions and caught a bus.  Asked directions and walked what felt like miles.  Asked directions and walked what felt like further miles.  Arrived at the Designer Guild shop - it's shut on Saturdays!!  That was most of my morning gone, so I realised that I would have to start heading for Southwark Cathedral without having bought any fabric, designer or otherwise.

By a combination of bux and taxi I arrived at the Cathedral with a few minutes to spare so I ran through the market to the cathedral - and was informed by a very embarrassed lady that the back of my skirt was caught up in my tights. 

I don't know how that had happened but I do know that in future I shall buy my quilting fabric from local stores or the internet!

Thanks for visiting my blog.  I'm going to stick to quilting next week.

Thursday, 3 February 2011

Jewel Box Quilt Pattern

I've often looked at jewel box quilts longingly but felt that I couldn't be doing with all those triangles everywhere.  It took my tiny brain a while to work out that they were in fact squares for the most part, but I got there in the end! 
I've seen many jewel box quilt patterns with much smaller pieces than I have used, but for this quilt pattern I have stuck with my favourite 2.1/2" size because it is such an easy size to work with.

I rummaged around in my fabric stash looking for pairs of colours that I could theme together:  one dark and one light.  I ended up with six pairs of colours (12 fabrics) and cut a 2.1/2" strip and a 4.3/4" strip across the width of each of these fabrics.  Batiks would look absolutely gorgeous in a jewel box quilt but I didn't have any of them.  You will also need twelve 2.1/2" strips and twelve 4.3/4" strips in black.

Using a 1/4" seam and with right sides together sew a 2.1/2" black strip to a colour strip along the length.  cut across the width at 2.1/2" intervals.  Do the same with another black strip and the colour that themes with the first one.

Take a black/light colour 2.1/2" strip and a black/dark colour strip and sew together to make a four patch square as shown below.

Take a black 4.3/4" strip of fabric and a colour 4.3/4" strip.  Lay them with right sides together and cut across the width at 4.3/4" intervals to make 4.3/4" squares.  Mark a line along the diagonal of each square (these are pairs of squares, black and colour) and sew a 1/4" seam either side of the marked line.  Cut along the marked line and you will have two squares each made up of one black triangle and one colour triangle.

These two quilt blocks are all you need for the entire jewel box quilt pattern:  that's how simple it is. 
The video shows the block construction:

To make the centre of the jewel box quilt block, take four of the four patch squares and four of the triangle squares and arrange them as shown.  The small squares (the jewels) are starting to form a frame around the big square (the jewel box) in the middle, so make sure you place them as shown with the light and dark alternating.

The rows above and below the central square are both made of a triangle square at each corner with two nine patch blocks between them.  Again, be careful to alternate the colours so that you continue the frame around the central square of the jewel box quilt block.

The central square is obviously the two themed colours that you began with:  the triangles in each corner of the jewel box quilt block will form another square (jewel box) with the three different colours of the blocks around it.

Keep going and make more jewel box quilt blocks with all the other colours of fabric.  I had enough fabric to make two quilt blocks in each pair of colours, so that I ended up with twelve jewel box quilt blocks.  There are two options:  one quilt using four rows of three quilt blocks or two lap quilts each using three rows of two quilt blocks.  Each quilt block measures 16" square so the first option would give you a quilt 48" by 64" (before the border) and the second option of the lap quilts would be 32" by 48" before adding the border.  I decided to go for two lap quilts.

After completing the twelve jewel box quilt blocks, I was left with  enough triangle squares to be able to use them in the border - you know how I hate having fabric left over.

Sew them together in pairs and then make two strips of eight for the short ends of the quilt.

In the photo on the right the quilt border has been added along the bottom edge of the jewel box quilt.  The border strip to sew along the edge needs to be fourteen squares long but notice that the end square is a single colour rather than a pair of colours.  that way you get the effect of a square going into the corner, which I quite liked.

I hope you enjoyed quilting this jewel box pattern as I did.  It really does have simple building blocks, doesn't it?

Thanks for visiting my blog.  You'll find more ideas for quilt patterns at Ludlow Quilt and Sew.

Tuesday, 1 February 2011

Quilting In An Empty Nest

When my daughter Samantha, the youngest of my offspring, left home to go to university I was reliably informed that I would suffer from empty nest syndrome.  I was told many times that I would mope around the house feeling depressed.  I was warned that I would go into her bedroom and daydream.

Well, actually  .... no.  For the first time in 30 years I had nobody else to look after, could be totally selfish and loved every minute of it!.  When I went into one of the empty bedrooms my thoughts usually turned to how much extra fabric I could store in that room.

I quilted and I quilted and I quilted some more.  I launched a quilting website and began to run my own online quilting business.  Sometimes I came up for breath and fed myself - bread and cheese is so much quicker to prepare than the nutritious meals that I always tried to give the children.

When I was halfway through a project (and when wasn't I?) I could leave the quilt blocks spread out across the table and not have to pack everything away and then try and remember which quilt blocks went where next time I returned to the project.

Yes, of course I miss the children, but they keep in touch and it is wonderful to hear about their lives now, so very different from my own.   And now I must get back to the thirty or so not quite finished quilts spread out in their bedrooms ...