|Aqua/gray Dr Suess border|
|Just a bit of the mess!|
As soon as I finished this one I wanted a different combo so I asked my non-quilter friend Bev for ideas. After brainstorming a few minutes I came up with beige/gray. She thought I was nuts and was not on board until she saw it all together. It may be my favorite.
|Beige/gray. Admit it. It looks good!|
|Brights/black made with inspiration|
fabric. Looking at the picture the
border actually works.
|Zoo I Spy for baby boy|
I will always relate these quilts to Survivor. I have been binge watching for months while sewing, so they are Survivor quilts!
Well, I now have to stop this madness for a while and clean up the mess! I have to move an entire room full of stuff into another room that at the moment has stuff piled up everywhere. Christmas is coming and so is Emma!
Supplies needed: A square ruler. For these measurement you will need an 8 1/2" square. A smaller or larger ruler will require different measurements.
Rotary cutter and mat
Long ruler at least 3" wide
Lots and lots of scraps
A large piece for the X. It will be cut into 1 1/4" x 12 " pieces so you should decide how many blocks you will be making before getting X fabrics (I used various black fabrics on the scrappy one)
|Washi tape ruler. Love it!|
Fabric sizing or Best Press type spray sizing VERY IMPORTANT
Choose fabrics. Obviously anything goes with a total scrappy look.
|Blue and greens, scrambled up. I like the side|
borders which make it a better size. Not too fond
of the weird olive greens but I'll call them sparkle.
should have pulled out, but decided to go with everything...thus the ugly olive in there).
Here where I talk about one thing I consider very important for any quilt..SPARKLE!
Some people call it POP, I like SPARKLE. Sparkle fabrics are the ones that contrast and pop out a bit. If you have a bit of sparkle your quilt will not be flat and lifeless. It will have some life and movement. My rule is there should be 1-2 "sparkles" in each unit. In this project I see 3 units--middle, left and right.
|Pile of strips. See the|
sparkles in there?
In a bright combo, yellows and oranges and lime green will sparkle
In a neutral, a darker or lighter color will sparkle
In the bright/black combo, a lighter one will sparkle
It is also a good idea to make the SPARKLES a narrow strip.
Keep in mind what you want for the X. Some ideas:
Bright kids fabrics with black X
Pastels with white or yellow X
Two color with contrasting X (aqua/gray w/ white X, gray/beige w/ dark gray X, blue/green w/ white X
Anything can be done as long as the X pops!
Cut strips in varying widths 1", 1 1/4", 1 1/2", 1 3/4", 2", up to 2 1/2" (wide pieces are good for fabrics with large fun prints). They can be any width, but it is best to have a good variety. It doesn't matter how long the pieces are as long as they are at least 3 1/2" long.
Cut X pieces 1/1/4" x 12". Cut enough for the number of blocks you are making.
It is a good idea to know how many blocks you are making. - like to make them in multiples of 4 because it bothers me to have half an X on the edge, but that's just me. It takes 4 blocks to make an X.
16 blocks= baby size square
24 blocks= larger baby or lap size, but looks best with added side borders
36 blocks = square lap size
STEP THREE: Center piece
Sew strips together. I've done this a couple ways. I have cut strips for the center into pieces 3 1/2 to 4" long first and sewed the pieces together. I have also sewn long strips together in groups of 3 (any more is a problem unless each strip is the same length)
"RULES" FOR SEWING
For 3 1/2" pieces:
Choose pieces to pair up based on CONTRAST. Different widths, different colors, different values, different amount of pattern. You want good variety throughout.
Chain piece like crazy.
Cut units apart and sew pairs together, keeping watch on width, color, value, pattern, and sparkle.
Repeat until piece is 12 1/2" to 13" long with 1-2 sparkles per 12 1/2" strip (this is where my ruler on the machine comes in handy)
For longer pieces:
Sew together in groups of 3. (This seems to work well). Then cut these into 3 1/2" to 4" pieces.
At this point the directions are the same. Pair up, watch contrast, go for 12 1/2" to 13" length.
PRESS. VERY IMPORTANT to use fabric sizing when you press. This will equalize the weights of the fabrics and will prevent stretch on the edges.
Press all strips to one direction.
Cut into a 3 1/2" strip. Here is where you will get excited because it looks so pretty!
Center your X fabric on the strip. Sew. If you are smart you will make sure to sew with the pieced edges going down so you won't flip any--just saying!
Sew strips to the X.
My rules: First strip should contrast with the X so it doesn't blend in. Start and end about 1" from the end.
Continue adding strips, keeping in mind color, value, pattern, width, and sparkle. Be sure not to put your sparkles (one per unit) in the same round or they will all meet up in the end.
Where you start and end depends on the last strip. If you are a geometry thinker, think 45° angle. If the strip was 1" start and end 3/4" down, if it was 2 1/2" start and end 2" down.
This is one project where I use the scissors A LOT!
Try not to repeat fabrics on a round or you will have to work harder later to keep them from meeting up at the end.
Keep adding strips on both sides until the piece is 12 1/2" from corner to corner.
It is a huge time (and thread) saver to chain piece!
Press from the center out, using sizing.
This step could be done with a larger ruler, but what a hassle! If your block is the size of the ruler, it is so much easier to visualize!
THIS WILL MAKE YOU VERY HAPPY! THEY ARE SO PRETTY!
|Scrappy with various blacks|
for the X
Lay out the way you like them. Keep an eye on your sparkles. Don't let them touch, balance them throughout the quilt. You want the eye to travel evenly around the surface, not zero in on some "galloping horse" area. Check to make sure you don't have strips touching that match , and it is a VERY good idea to check to be sure seams don't meet up anywhere. That makes a hard lump.
Sew together. Add borders if wanted. There are a couple ideas here.
This has become a long blog, but hopefully it will inspire someone to try this block. Get in touch if you have a question. I am pretty sure I left something out that would help. All of these directions seem lengthy, but for me it is fun to work within the "rules". I have never been bored, because each strip is a decision, and each decision is different. (I'm sure the invisible psychologist would have a name for this too, but I look at it as a way to be creative and not bored). Please share any pictures if you make one!
And finally I need to speak to the fabric hoarders (like me) out there. I used to save anything bigger than an inch (really!) I have given myself permission to call the cut off fabric "scraps" which Webster defines as "a small piece or amount of something, especially one that is left over after the greater part has been used:"
I probably would have saved all those cut off edge scraps in the past but now they are in a bag to be used for dog bed stuffing. I feel good about that!
|Another early I Spy. The|
colors are so pretty!
|One of the first ones I made with|
this pattern. It is a fun I Spy.