June 29, 2016

Quilt 64: Squares of Sharon - Blue Delft - DONE!

Back in April, I posted about a quilt I made using some strips from a jelly roll pack.  It was this jelly roll pack:
(click any picture on this blog to see a larger image)
The blue and white prints remind me of Blue Delft pottery - just so fresh and clean looking.

I only used a few strips from the pack and have been wondering what to do with the rest of it.  Then I remembered my friend Sharon's first quilt - a really gorgeous quilt made up of diagonal squares from a jelly roll!

Here's Sharon's quilt:
Gorgeous, isn't it?!?  I visited her recently and asked her how she made it.  She showed me the technique and well, it's just crazy clever!

It starts with joining 4 strips together:

The idea is to then fold the right sides together and stitch again (along the top in the photo below), and what you end up is pretty much a "tube" of strips.

I wanted to be sure my "tube" would lay flat nicely, so before sewing the final seam, I pressed the top seam down toward the center seam.

Then I folded the right sides together and pressed the "bottom" seam toward the edge, so the both seams will lie flat and in the same direction

I left the center seam alone, didn't press it down.  Below you can see the seams from the four strips, and how the center steam is standing up a bit.  Next I folded the right sides together and sewed in that final seam, making the "tube".

Next I put the tube on the cutting board and used my triangle cutting template to cut a diagonal line from one side of the tube to the other.
Then I flipped the ruler and did the same thing, but this time upside down:
Now, here's the thing:  The point of the triangle overlays the seam:
So I pull open the triangle from the tube and because there's only four or five stitches, that little bit of seam on the point just pulls away easily.

And here we are (below)!  A super-fast, super-easy 5.5" square of diagonal strips.
And when I say "super-fast", I mean it.  It only took me about 3 hours of work to make 60 of these squares.  So, yeah, I know it's backward, but now I contemplate a quilt design to use them, and this is what I came up with:
Finished size: 48" x 68"
6 squares across and 10 down, giving me a 30" x 50" center panel.  So I added a 2" solid blue border, then a 5" print border, and finishing with another 2" solid border.

And here it is: mounted on the longarm:
 Next I auditioned the thread.  Originally I thought I'd go with the lighter blue on the left, but the navy on the right fades much MUCH better into the design - so that's clearly the way to go (I don't want the quilting to overpower the prints).

And here it is!  I'm simply wild about this design:

48" x 68" - free motion loop-d-loop quilting on the longarm

Here's the backing - just plain blue homespun.  And, as you can see, I quilted it with free-motion loop-d-loops.

I'm finding that I like free-motion quilting more and more, but I need to get out of my loop-d-loop rut and get some other stitch patterns into my repertoire.  To that end, I've ordered a couple of books which will hopefully give me some usable ideas.

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