Monday, May 2, 2016

Quilt-A-Long Instructions

Please read through this post so we know where we stand with respect to sewing along together while we make this gorgeous quilt.

I would just like to reiterate that I did NOT design this quilt.  The photo below came through on one of my Facebook feeds just as it is and as soon as I saw it, it 'stopped me in my tracks' and I knew that I just had to make one.  No credits were given as to the designer but as you can see, it's a fairly simple design and was very easy to draft out on paper.  The measurements I chose to use are those that I feel comfortable with and my intentions are to end up with a quilt being either a very generous queen or even a king.

The instructions or guidelines that I am giving you are the ones I'm using to make my own version.  This is NOT an instructional pattern like one you would have to pay for that would give you step-by-step instructions or 'teach' you how to make the quilt.  It's not a difficult quilt to make and I would rate it at an intermediate level.  Having said that, some quilting experience is required.

How long it takes you to make yours is up to you.  I suggest that you take your time and enjoy the journey because there's definitely a lot of cutting and piecing.  Depending on my progress, I'll probably post some photos every couple of days till it's done and of course, we'd all like to hear and see about yours as well.

The size of your quilt will be your decision.  My initial plan is to make mine to finish at 102" x 88" but that could change.  Having said that, I really suck when it comes to figuring out how much fabric will be needed for just the quilt top.  If you're aiming for optimum size then would suggest a minimum of 4 yards of yellow and 5 yards of white to be on the safe side.  Too much fabric is better than running out, right?  *wink*  You can always make pillow cases or shams with the leftovers!

Now at this point, you might want to grab a cup of tea or coffee because a heavy dose of step-by-step photos follows.

If you've had trouble in the past lining up your squares so that the corners 'perfectly' match, you might want to have a quick look at and refer to this 'nesting squares' tutorial for some hints.  

Click on the link HERE.

Sew, let's get started.

To download and print the PDF file, please click HERE.  It is my suggestion that you keep the layout grids close by to refer to for color placement.  Even though I made the charts, they certainly helped me when laying out pieces for piecing. I even put them in a plastic sleeve because I found them easier to handle that way.

My instructions and diagrams are all hand written and drawn.  I don't have any fancy-schmancy programs to give them that 'professional' look and hopefully you'll be able to understand them.

I started with cutting 28 strips @ 2 1/2" x WOF (width of fabric) of each of the yellow and white fabrics.  You will need more but this will get you started with enough strips to complete the first two rows or sections of the quilt.

I love my Creative Grids rulers.  Look closely at the line where the almost center of the ruler sits on top of the left outside edge of the fabric.  The 2 1/2" line is marked and easy to see making cutting that much easier...and they don't slip or slide!

Referring to the grid for placement, piece seven strips together starting and ending with the yellow strips using a 1/4" seam allowance.

Subcut into 2 1/2" strips.  You should be able to get 16 pieces from one pieced set.

Repeat the above step, this time starting and ending with the white strips at the top and bottom.

Subcut these into 2 1/2" strips as well.

Referring to the layout grid, piece together 5 - 7 strips x 7 strips blocks, alternating the strips to form a checkerboard pattern.  

Did you notice that my walker has a secondary use as a prop?
From the white fabric, cut 71 sashing strips @ 3 1/2" x 14 1/2".  You should be able to cut three from each WOF strip.

Connect the five blocks together with a sashing strip, adding one to each end as well.

Using the same method as above, piece together 3 sets of 1 1/2" x WOF yellow and white strips and 6 sets white and yellow strips to make 42 - 3 1/2" unfinished nine patch cornerstone blocks.

Subcut into 1 1/2" strips and use the same piecing method to make the nine patches as for the larger checkerboard squares.  Refer to the layout grid for color placement.

Piece together 5 sashing strips, starting and ending with a nine patch cornerstone block.

Sew these to the top and bottom of each checkerboard row to connect the rows.

After I completed two sections, I took this photo on our queen size bed just to give you an idea of size.  It is centered on the bed and as you can see, there is ample drop on both sides.  

Then just continue adding sections until you reach the size of quilt that is suitable for your needs.


Are you having fun yet?

Ready, set...


Oops, I forgot...ya gotta cut first!

Happy stitching!

Friday, April 29, 2016

"Stopped Me in my Tracks" Update

What an incredibly gorgeous day!

The sun is shining, the sky is blue and I'm sewing up a storm!  Probably the wrong choice of word but it's the first think that came to mind.

My "Stopped Me in my Tracks" quilt is progressing beautifully.  It definitely is going to be a winner, trust me!

I just want to say that I'm an artist which means that I have absolutely no knowledge or desire to know any more about math than I do now.  As a result, the yardage requirements that I'm about to give you is my BEST GUESS, based on what I've accomplished with mine thus far.

So here's the deal.  My instructions will include the sizes for two quilts.  One will finish at 102" x 88" and the second option will finish at 88" x 88".  If you want to alter the size in any way then that will be your decision and you'll have to figure out how much more or less fabric you'll need.

I would recommend getting a minimum of 4 yards of the focus...or in this case, the yellow...fabric which also will also take into account the yardage for the binding and 5 yards of the white/cream.  Having too much is better than having not enough to complete the quilt and besides, you can always make a pair of pillow slips or shams should there be any leftovers.

On Monday I'll be posting the PDF file with the instructions and grid charts in addition to a step-by-step tutorial with loads of photos illustrating the steps I followed to make my version.

Have fun shopping for your fabric over the weekend and we'll see you back here on Monday.

Oh, and I'll leave you with a picture of Frankie supervising, just to make sure that I'm doing a good job with mine.

Happy stitching and shopping!

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Lots Happening!

So many exciting things happening!!!

I just got off the phone with UPS and they told me that my fabric has cleared customs and I should have it either tomorrow or Friday.

Yippee skippee!  Woo hoo!  Eureka!  Huzzah! and whatever other exclamation I can't think of at the moment to add to the mix!!!  I can't wait to see it wrapped as bolts.  I'm light-headed now.   Can you imagine how I'll be when I see the REAL thing?  Oh my!

I finished binding my school house quilt and even though the batiks are totally out of my box, I really love the way it turned out.  Thank you, Alice for another wonderful quilting job.  I believe the edge-to-edge design that she used is called "Evening Primrose".

And lastly, I've been cutting and sewing on our "Stopped Me in my Tracks" quilt-a-long in order to have a better idea of the yardage that we'll need to complete it.

Sew here are my plans.

Let's see how much I can accomplish between now and Friday morning and I'll post the yardage requirements sometime on Friday.  That will give you the weekend to shop your stash and/or LQS (local quilt shop) to come up with your fabric.  On Monday, I'll post the link to the PDF file with my instructions and diagrams as well as a step-by-step tutorial with photos in order to make the process even easier than it already is.  

How's that?  Are you still in?

You're gonna L-O-V-E it!!!

Happy stitching!

Saturday, April 23, 2016


I've received several comments and emails both here and on my Facebook page asking me if I would consider doing a quilt-a-long with the "Stopped Me in my Tracks" quilt that I spoke about in my last post.

Funny thing is I was thinking the exact same thing when I began to draw up the quilt on graph paper after writing down notes and measurements.  

It certainly isn't a difficult quilt to make and of course I don't nor will I take any credit for the design because it isn't mine.  Plain and simple, I just L-O-V-E it and I have to make one!

Let me know if you're interested in quilting-a-long and I'll make a "rough" PDF file which will actually be my work sheet and notes and we can make one together.  If there's enough interest, I'll get my act together and pass along the file to you sometime next week.

In the interim...

Happy stitching!

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

What's next?

I am really a very simple person with very simple tastes.  I'm not at all into 'froo-froo', glitz or bling and those that know me also know that my tastes and life style reflect that.  

I love primitive, antiques and virtually everything with a vintage flair.  The Civil War era fascinates me and I'm so thankful for the opportunity to be able to include the reproduction fabrics that are available to us today to my quilts.

In yesterday's post I mentioned a photo of a quilt that came through in one of my Facebook feeds that just stopped me in my tracks.  It was love at first sight and I immediately knew what my next project would be, the quilt that is folded at the foot of the bed.

It's not a difficult quilt to make but the calmness and serenity that it exudes is right up my alley.  

I purchased some new Thimbleberries fabric yesterday specifically for this quilt and as you can see, I'm going to use the same butter yellow/white color scheme.

I might start cutting some time in the next few days but I'd really like to completely finish the center medallion of Brinton Hall first, which just so happens to be my goal for this week!

Happy stitching!