Another Sunday and another scrappy idea for using up those strips. This is the classic Chinese Coins quilt – rows of strips sometimes separated by plain rows as here (or you could use a print)
or sometimes just rows of strips. The strips can be all the same width as above or you can use strips of different widths as in this example.
Whichever one you choose to make they are really quick and easy – join strips of the same length (you choose) together until you have a strip the length you want your quilt to be, Make more strips – as many as you want and either sew them together or sew them to alternate plain strips until the quilt is the width you want.
All you have to do then is quilt it! If you’ve used plain strips then you can treat it as a ‘strippy’ quilt and stitch a different border-type design in each strip or if its lots of strips, as in the second example, you can use an allover pattern or treat it as a wholecloth quilt and quilt it from the plain ‘back’.
Is your scrap bag full of random strips? Different lengths, different widths, not even straight? We have a plan! You can do this quilt-as-you-go or just fabric and quilt later – your choice. But the basic premis is the same – stitch those strips together!
You do need a bit of a plan if you like order and symmetry, otherwise just go completely random. If you want to do q-a-y-g then you will need to find some wadding squares and some backing – all cut to about the same size. Even with random ones you may find it easier if you stitch to some sort of backing – interfacing or light weight cotton of some sort – that is cut into a square, especially if you are going for the more ordered look.
Start with a central strip diagonally across the square centre(ish) – if you like a plan then this should be the same colour fabric, if not the same fabric each time; then add strips to either side of this – right-sides together, stitch, press back etc. Trim square.
Your squares will look either neat and ordered if all your strips were the same width, or a bit wild and wonky if they weren’t –
Once you get bored with making squares you can join them together. By having the same fabric down the centre of each square you can make different designs by turning your blocks around. Notice how having wonky strips means no matching of seams other than the blocks themselves.
If you did qayg then you may (depending on the method you use to put the blocks together) have a little sashing strip between the blocks – you could make this the same colour as the centre strips if they were all the same.
If you get bored very quickly then you could just make a simple little runner or two –
Join us next week for some more scrappy ideas . . .
Its July so a new EQ Doodle has magically appeared on the EQ Doodles page. This month we look at a simple on-point Autograph block. You can make these as ordered or not as you wish, keep the centre strip plain white for autographs, or just mix up the colours and have fun with it all.
Over on the Doodles page we have kept our ideas to greyscale but here on the scrappy post we can go a little mad with colour. In these examples we have kept the background triangles the same colour, but used different prints; you could try mixing these colours up too and make other designs where the blocks meet.
Download a colouring sheet here to play with. The easiest way to make this block is not to worry about the finished size but to worry about the size of the strips – especially if they are to have autographs scrawled on them. Cut strips to a suitable width, join three together and then cut into squares. Add setting triangles to the four corners to turn the strip square on point – you can download an information sheet about how to do that here.
Chris has been browsing her bookcase in the last few weeks and unearthed one of her earliest patchwork books – The Perfect Patchwork Primer by Beth Gutcheon.
All black and white, no colour at all, and lots of useful information on making and using templates and sewing patches together by hand – no rotary cutter or indeed machine stitching mentioned. On the other hand it does contain a lot of blocks and one that caught my eye was called Becky’s 9-Patch as it consisted of different width strips plus a couple of squares.
You can download the rotary cutting instructions to make a 9 inch version here (courtesy of Electric Quilt). I then had a play with the colours. If you make all your blocks the same colours (and remember they needn’t be the same fabrics as they are in my diagrams, they could just be the same shade of whatever colour) then you get some very interesting patterns appearing depending on where the colour emphasis is and which way you turn the blocks.
You do get more of a mish-mash if you make everything a different colour.
But you could try to make just the long edges all the same (ish) to get some pattern and symmetry back into your quilt.