Friday, March 19, 2010


I've been thinking about doing a series of small quilts to hang near my eating area in the kitchen. A week ago I found a book on Amazon containing patterns for 21 small quilts, each just 16" X 20". This is the first I attempted.

Now, I know that apart from some non-matching points and corners, there are also distortion issues, so I'll just lay that out on the table first thing. I know, I know. Partly, it arose from the cutting instructions. Since this is on point and the designer had the constraint to make it exactly 16" x 20", many of the pieces were strange sizes and her instructions included a lot of squares cut twice on the diagonals to make small right triangles. Of course, when you do that, the 90 degree corner of the triangle is on the bias, which is a recipe for disaster, or at least distortion. That just about drove me crazy. Also, I almost never make half square triangle blocks by sewing two triangles together. You get much more accurate results drawing the center line on a square and sewing on either side. At least I do. All these small bias triangles were a real pill during construction.

I almost redrafted the pattern to be 20" x 25", because - really - what would it have hurt? Might have saved my sanity!

The next one I'll try is partly applique so it will be easier to put together. However, the appliqued center is surrounded by a border of scrappy hourglass blocks. That means I will have to pull out every storage box in the stash and cut maybe one square out of over 60 fabrics to make it properly scrappy!


SingerMom said...

I love that quilt! What is the name of the book?

The Calico Quilter said...

SingerMom, it's called "Fat Quarter Quilting: 21 Terrific 16" x 20" Projects" by Lori Smith. These little things might be a bit fiddly and tedious, but they're addictive. I've already started another project! (But I need to make myself finish the machine quilting on the first one.)