Hi again. Happy to show you today the two quilts I have finished in the past couple of weeks. The quilting was mostly done in March but it took me a while to handstitch the binding on.
Both quilts were pieced some time last year (though I have continued to make Log Cabin squares since January (see latter part of this post), for my second version of this quilt).
The little Ohio Star was inspired by a quilt in book by Jo Morton, but I wanted to do a different border. It took a while before I settled on sawtooth-set HSTs which I made from all the scraps using Triangles on a Roll paper foundation for accuracy. I love the paper method if I have a lot of HSTs to make, as it saves all that tedious trimming.
I have included these pictures of the unquilted top as the warmth of the afternoon sun today has given a slightly yellowish cast to my photos of the completed quilt. The neutrals are really a whitish cream. The blue fabrics in the stars were left overs from my Indigo Dreams quilt, being mostly from a line of reproduction indigoes by Harriet Harman bought and stashed many years ago (the fabric was dated 2002!) and I finished my indigo quilt in 2014...been hoarding the scraps ever since.
The quilt measures 55" x 64". There are thirty blocks, set in 6 rows of 5 blocks. The blocks measure 6" finished, with the hourglass units finishing at 2". The sawtooth border is made up of one hundred and twenty eight 1 1/2" finished size HSTs and there is a final indigo border which I cut at 5"from the fabric left over from backing my North Wind quilt. The binding is a solid navy from my stash.
On the back of the quilt I used a navy and white large floral which I had in my stash, bought for another project, never realised. I decided to take the plunge and use a light backing to link to the light stars on the front of the quilt. I would usually have gone dark and played safe, but I am very glad I didn't as I feel the large light floral was the right choice on this occasion.
The mustard for the alternate blocks was also a 'brave' choice, outside my comfort zone but inspired by Jo Morton's use of that colour in her traditional quilts. I had the fabric in my stash so I must have liked it all those years ago - but hadn't dared use it, until now! The alternate block made the star blocks go further, but also avoided lumpy seams and brought another dimension to the quilt which would have been missing if I had stuck to all-blue.
Because of the mustard I quilted with gold thread. Cream would have sat better on the stars but was too bright for the indigo. My quilting is straight lines with a walking foot for simplicity and across the blocks to avoid ditch stitching. In the borders I quilted hourglass shapes to echo the block design.
The hourglass blocks which make the Ohio Star points were trimmed to be as accurate as possible, which in turn meant that the blocks went together really precisely. I love Ohio Star set on point (less keen when it is straight set - I prefer the proportions of Sawtooth Star in that orientation).
I hope to teach this little quilt when my LQS returns to normal service in due course. At the moment, who knows the time frame, so I am getting up to date by completing WIPs and writing class instructions. I have also had a fun time chain piecing and will post a tutorial tomorrow for simple Log Cabin blocks of the conventional light/dark type.
Which brings me to the Log Cabin variation which for me is such a happy quilt. Which is probably why I have gone a bit mad with pictures....
I made this first bright version last year and got the blocks together after our holiday in September (see latter part of this post). I had previously (gosh, in 2017!) made a version in country colours which I also enjoyed, and I think it is safe to say that I am addicted to making these little blocks.
Each one gives you a chance to play around with colour and print on a small scale: the centres are cut at 2 1/2" square and the strips are cut at 1" (yes, one inch!) so each round finishes at only 1/2". The blocks finish at 5".
The quilt measures 65" x 80" which is a good size for a double bed. There are 208 blocks set 13 x 16. This may sound like an impossibly large number of blocks to make, but believe me when I say I already have almost as many again, so expect another iteration of this quilt before too long!
They are fairly quick to assemble if you make yourself a production line, by cutting strips to size then chain piecing and pressing in batches. And this quilt is all made from scraps - so satisfying, and economical when you consider the price of fabric. You have paid for all these scraps, so use them!
So why not trawl through your scraps and leftovers from other projects, and have a go at making some little Log Cabin variation blocks? If you are stuck at home without easy access to a quilt shop, you could make a virtue of necessity and use what you already have to produce something gorgeous and comforting.
For backing I used a soft yellow floral which I had in my stash, having bought it in a sale. Again, yellow isn't really one of my colours, but I was drawn to it for this sunny quilt.
The quilting is very simple - diagonal lines though the blocks using a walking foot. There is so much going on in this quilt that elaborate quilting would be wasted. I used my favourite light cream quilting thread from Mettler. It goes with almost anything and doesn't draw attention to itself.
I used up lots of leftover pieces of bright binding from other projects. With strips joined on the bias, I think an intentionally scrappy binding becomes something rather special.
Whatever is happening with you and your family at this worrying time for the whole world, I hope you will stay safe and well, and allow yourself some comfort and distraction by sewing.
With all good wishes,