July 21, 2014

Text Me a Quilt

At first, I didn't have a plan for using all the text fabrics I've acquired over the last year or so.  I just bought obscene quantities of fabric and watched my stash grow.  Eventually, I "destashed" some of it after the realization that I won't live long enough to use it all.  It took a while to choose a design.  I wanted to use small pieces of text fabrics in the background so that snippets of words, letters and numbers appeared throughout the background randomly.  I also wanted to use color prints for the main fabrics, but wanted to use more text fabrics than color.  Here's what happened.


This is only a portion of the quilt top that's finished -- I have a long way to go.  But I've had so much fun working on it that I decided to share the instructions in case you'd like to sew along with me.  If you don't have any text fabrics, you can always use "low-volume" backgrounds instead.  Or a combination of both!   
I shared the instructions with a couple of my Instagram friends who are fellow text fabric junkies.  They've been busy making quilts of their own.  I'm hoping Peggy (Stitchin with Peg) will be blogging about her finished finished quilt soon.  You can see it on her Instagram feed, too (paront1222).  It's fabulous!  Peggy made 10" blocks using both text fabrics and low-volume prints. 

Susan (yardgrl60 at Instagram) doesn't have a blog, but will be sharing her project soon on her Instagram feed.  She's making 7 1/2" blocks using text fabrics with subtle color prints.  If you know Susan, you'll recognize her signature style.  I love everything she makes. 

The instructions below are for a 60" square quilt, with options for two different block sizes.  Use 2" strips for the smaller 7 1/2" finished block, and 2 1/2" strips for the larger 10" finished block.  I've used the smaller block in my quilt, but the 10" block is easier to make, and you won't need as many blocks.  The instructions provide for a certain number of 2" or 2 1/2" strips, but I used as many fabrics as I could find, sometimes using only scraps or partial strips of text fabrics.  And I used only scraps for the colored squares.  If you need a little help deciding which block size to use, try making test blocks of each size before cutting your "real" fabric.  I threw together the instructions after I made a lot of blocks, so I haven't tested the instructions.  If you notice anything weird, just let me know. 

(You'll need 64 blocks for a 60" square quilt.)
From Light Fabrics:
     Cut 51 strips, 2" x the width of fabric.
           From 26 strips, crosscut:
                3 rectangles, 2" x 5" (78)
                2 rectangles, 2" x 3.5" (52)
                9 squares, 2" x 2" (234) *
           From 25 strips, crosscut:
                2 rectangles, 2" x 5" (50)
                3 rectangles, 2" x 3.5" (75)
                9 squares, 2" x 2" (225) *
        Cut one more 2" x 3 1/2" rectangle from leftover scraps.
        *  You will have 11 squares left over.

From Dark Fabrics:

        From assorted dark scraps, cut 128 matching sets of 4 squares, 2" x 2".

(You'll need 36 blocks for a 60" square quilt.)

From Light Fabrics:
        Cut 36 strips, 2 1/2" x the width of fabric.  From each strip, crosscut:

                2 rectangles, 2 1/2" x 6 1/2" (72)
                2 rectangles, 2 1/2" x 4 1/2" (72)
                7 squares, 2 1/2" x 2 1/2" (252)

From Dark Fabrics:

         From assorted scraps, cut 72 matching sets of 4 squares, 2 1/2" x 2 1/2".


For each block, arrange the pieces as shown in the illustrations below.  (The first illustration shows the measurements of the pieces for a 7 1/2" finished block; the second illustration shows the measurements of the pieces for a 10" finished block.)  Sew together the pieces in vertical rows, pressing the seam allowances toward the dark fabric squares.  Then sew the vertical rows together, pressing the seam allowances in the direction indicated by the arrows.  If you follow the pressing directions, the seams will nestle, you'll hear birds singing, and a rainbow will appear.  Probably.
Layout for 7 1/2" finished block.

Layout for 10" finished block.

Finished Block
Here are the 10" and 7 1/2" blocks side by side, just for perspective.
Sew the blocks together in horizontal rows, rotating every other block a quarter turn.   Press the seam allowances in the direction indicated by the arrows.  Sew the rows together; press the seam allowances in the same direction.

Layout for 7 1/2" finished blocks.  Quilt measures 60" x 60".

Layout for 10" finished blocks.  Quilt measures 60" square.
So there you go! Hope you'll grab a stack of fabrics and sew along with me.  If you have any questions, feel free to e-mail me (link in profile) or leave a comment here.  Have fun!

July 6, 2014

Text Fabric Problem and Winner of eBook

A while back, I confessed to having a text fabric problem. 

Initially, I didn't have a plan, but knew I wanted to make a quilt using lots of low-volume text prints with little scraps of color.  Here's a little preview of what I'm working on.

I'm also working on a tutorial to share with you later this week in case
you want to sew along with me.  Hope you'll join me!

In the meantime, we have a winner of the Celebrate Christmas with That Patchwork Place eBook. 

Congratulations, Jennifer!  I know you'll have fun with this book!
Thank you to everyone who played along.  Hope you all have a great week!