Working With Florals and Solids

I was going through my tubs of 5″ squares trying to do some condensing and organizing when I came across packages of 6″ floral squares.  Many years ago I traded for these squares with my guild members.  If I recall the reason we were trading 6″ squares was for the people who wanted to make the Watercolor quilts, and a 6″ square could be cut into nine 2″ inch squares, a size that worked well for the Watercolor quilts.  I had no intention of making a Watercolor quilt but I loved to trade fabric and a person cannot have too many precut squares.  So here they are, still unused after about twenty years!

stack of squares

Lately I’ve been looking at a lot of quilts from the 30’s and 40’s and trying to figure out what it is about those quilts that I love. Then it dawned on me that a number of them used solid fabrics, sometimes in many colors, as their background fabric.  So I just had to give it a try, teaming up those nicely aged 6″ squares in florals with some solids.

blocks on design wall

I’m loving it! Here are some of the blocks close up, do you recognize any of these vintage fabrics? Do you still have some of them in your stash?

yellow and blue

Purple

Green

I think this will be my next charity quilt, so look for the directions for this quilt in some future blogs.

Pat

Pat Speth author of:  Nickel Quilts,   More Nickel Quilts,    Amazing Nickel Quilts,  Nickel Quilts & Borders, and The Big Book of Nickel Quilts

To schedule a Nickel Quilt lecture or workshop contact Pat at the email below.

Email: pat@patspeth.com
www.patspeth.com

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Sweet Land of Liberty Part 5

Right now I’m in California and the temperature could get up to 74° today.  When I left Saint Paul yesterday morning it was -12°!  During my down time today, and before the lecture tonight, I am alternating computer work with walking laps around the parking lot of the hotel were I am staying. I just can’t pass up taking advantage of this great weather!

Now for the borders on the Sweet Land of Liberty quilt.  I utilized my planned leftover half square triangles in this pieced border.  I sewed them together, changing direction in the center of each border.

Pieced Border Strips

Many times when adding a pieced border, I rely on an inner border to make my pieced border fit my quilt; not this time. With this pieced border I am going to adjust the pieced border in the center by inserting coping strips or taking a larger seam.

This is a close up of the center portion of the pieced border, with the half square triangles changing direction, and before the adjustments were made.

Center before coping piece

After measuring my quilt top and my pieced borders I discovered that I needed to add a couple of inches to the top and bottom borders to make them fit the quilt top.  So I just ripped out the center seam and inserted this coping strip.

Top and bottom with coping piece

The side borders were just 1/2″  to long to fit the quilt, so I simply took in the center seam. Yes I chose a different treatment for the side borders than I did for the top and bottom borders, I love making up my own rules!

Sides with center tuck

And here is the quilt top with borders added! It’s pinned onto my design wall sideways.

Top with Borders added

On my list of things to do when I get home is to load this on the longarm and get it quilted!

Of course this quilt is a great use of 5″ squares!

Enjoy!
Pat

Pat Speth author of:  Nickel Quilts,   More Nickel Quilts,    Amazing Nickel Quilts,  Nickel Quilts & Borders, and The Big Book of Nickel Quilts

This information is copyright protected
© 2014 Pat Speth
All rights reserved.
This pattern/design is for your personal, non-commercial use only.
You are not allowed to mass produce this information.

Email: pat@patspeth.com
www.patspeth.com

Sweet Land of Liberty Part 4

It’s time to show you the progress I have been making on the Sweet Land of Liberty quilt.  The blocks have all been sewn into rows and all the rows are sewn together!  This is the quilt top so far pinned sideways on two of my design walls. I’m loving it!  There are about 90 different blues and over 100 different reds.

Sweet Land of Liberty quilt top before borders

For the pressing when sewing the sashing blocks to the cornerstones, I decided to press away from the sashing and towards the cornerstones. This is the wrong side of a sashing row section showing the pressing.

pressing of sashing B

I’m also pressing away from the sashing and towards the blocks when sewing together the block rows.  This is the wrong side of a block row section showing the pressing.

pressing of sashing

I do love this quilt and the sashing I chose for it, which of course starts me thinking about other main blocks I could use with the same sashing treatment.  For a simpler and faster block you could just select some wonderful large scale fabric and add the connecting corners in the same manner so you still have those planned leftover half square triangles. Layer cakes (those 10″ squares) would be a great choice for these blocks since you could trim away just 1/2″ for the needed size of 9 1/2″.

alt block idea

Of course this quilt is a great use of 5″ squares!

Enjoy!
Pat

Pat Speth author of:  Nickel Quilts,   More Nickel Quilts,    Amazing Nickel Quilts,  Nickel Quilts & Borders, and The Big Book of Nickel Quilts

This information is copyright protected
© 2014 Pat Speth
All rights reserved.
This pattern/design is for your personal, non-commercial use only.
You are not allowed to mass produce this information.
Email: pat@patspeth.com
www.patspeth.com

Sweet Land of Liberty Part 3

Below are my hourglass units all ready to be sewn into the sashing blocks for the Sweet Land of Liberty quilt.

plates of hourglass units

The main block is going to measure 9″ (finished size), so I am adding spacer strips to my hourglass units to make my sashing block finish the same size in length as my main block.  The spacer strip is cut 2 1/2″ x 4″.

2 HG and spacer

Sew two hourglass units to a spacer strip and press towards the rectangle. The sashing block should measure 4″ x 9 1/2″ at this point (unfinished).

pieced sashing

More assembly information on this quilt will follow in another post.

Enjoy!
Pat

Pat Speth author of:  Nickel Quilts,    More Nickel Quilts,    Amazing Nickel Quilts,  and  Nickel Quilts & Borders

Email: pat@patspeth.com              www.patspeth.com

This information is copyright protected
© 2013 Pat Speth
All rights reserved.
This pattern/design is for your personal, non-commercial use only.
You are not allowed to mass produce this information.

Sweet Land of Liberty Part 2

This quilt is coming along nicely and I love it when the quilt looks just as good as I imagined it would.  This picture shows half of the blocks up on the design wall with the pieced sashing blocks.  Red cornerstones still need to be selected and added before everything is sewn together.

on design wall

I’m working with prints and plaids in the blocks and I went to my stash of already cut 5″ squares and selected an assortment of prints.

Blue prints

Then I went to my stash of already cut plaids and picked out some wonderful ones.  The plaids are all from upcycled shirts!

Plaids

To make the block you need:

four 4″ squares of background (light) fabric

four 5″ squares of blue, I used two plaids and two prints

squares for snowball blocks

Draw a diagonal line on the wrong side of the background square.  With right sides together stitch one thread width to the outside of the diagonal line (towards the corner you are going to cut away). I am making planned leftovers; the bonus half square triangles will be used in the pieced border that I am adding to this quilt.  Stitch a second seam a scant 1/2″ away from the first.

Connecting corner for two units

Cut on the diagonal line.

Units cut on diagonal

Set the seams and press the seam on the larger unit towards the light and the seam on the half square triangles to the dark. Set aside the half square triangle units for the pieced border.

two units

Arrange four different units as shown below and sew together.

arrange units for block

More assembly information on this quilt will follow in another post.

Enjoy!
Pat

Pat Speth author of:  Nickel Quilts,    More Nickel Quilts,    Amazing Nickel Quilts,  and  Nickel Quilts & Borders

This information is copyright protected
© 2013 Pat Speth
All rights reserved.
This pattern/design is for your personal, non-commercial use only.
You are not allowed to mass produce this information.

Email: pat@patspeth.com
www.patspeth.com

Sweet Land of Liberty and Hourglass Units

During the past two months I’ve been gone from home teaching almost nonstop and have not done much with the charity quilts I’m making.  Four Square is ready to be loaded on the longarm and quilted, but it’s going to have to wait a couple more weeks.  I’m packing for a week long retreat, non teaching- I get to quilt!  I have started on my third charity quilt and am taking it with me to work on.  Below is the EQ6 drawing of the quilt, I’m naming it Sweet Land of Liberty and it will go to Quilts of Valor.

Sweet Land of Liberty EQ6 image

To make Sweet Land of Liberty I am making lots of hourglass units.

4 hourglass units

To make hourglass units from 5″ squares, select one dark and one light square.

1 dark 1 light

1. Draw a diagonal line on the wrong side of a 5″ square of background (light) fabric. With right sides together, place the marked background square on top of a square of the main fabric

Line on background

2. Stitch a “scant” 1/4″ wide seam on both sides of the diagonal line.  I always sew my seams using a “scant” 1/4″ wide seam allowance. This is a slightly narrower seam, about a needle-width narrower than the full 1/4″. This narrower seam allows for the thickness of the thread in the seam allowance, the pressing of the fabric over the seam, and results in a more accurately sized unit.  Give it a try!

Stitch on each side

3. Cut on the diagonal line to yield two half-square-triangle units.

Cut on diagonal

4. Press to set the stitching; then press the seam toward the dark fabric.

press to dark

5. Select two different half square triangles and draw a diagonal line on the back of one of them that is perpendicular to the seam line.  Do not trim these units up!

two different hst

6. With right sides together and with light and dark fabrics opposite each other, center the marked unit on top of the other unit. Nestle the center seam and pin in place. Sew on both sides of the diagonal line.

dark against light

7. Cut on the diagonal line. Press to set the stitching; then press the seam to one side in each unit.

Stitch and cut

8. You are ready to trim!  The easiest way trim this unit is with a 4″ square ruler. Simply lay the ruler on the unit with the corners of the ruler lying right on top of the seams.  Trim all four edges.

square up 4 inch ruler

To make four hourglass units that have two different dark fabrics in them like the units shown below simply start with two background squares and two different dark squares and follow steps 1 through 8.

2 dark 2 light4 hourglass units

Enjoy!

Pat

Pat Speth author of:   Nickel Quilts,    More Nickel Quilts,    Amazing Nickel Quilts,  and  Nickel Quilts & Borders

This information is copyright protected
© 2013 Pat Speth
All rights reserved.
This pattern/design is for your personal, non-commercial use only.
You are not allowed to mass produce this information

Email: pat@patspeth.com
www.patspeth.com

Four Square

Before I left town on my current teaching trip I found some time to quilt! This is number two of the ten charity quilts I am making to celebrate ten years of quilting as my full-time profession. I love scrappy quilts and this one is going to be great!  I’m calling it Four Square after the children’s playground game I remember playing about fifty years ago! So dig out those stash fabrics, cut some 5″ squares, and join in with me as I make this fun scrappy quilt!

Finished Four Square Block

To make one block these are the fabrics you need:

One 5″ square of a dark or medium to use in the four patch

One 5″ square of a dark or medium to be cut into 2 1/2″ x 4 1/2″ rectangles

Two rectangles that are 2 1/2″ x 8 1/2″

Three 5″ squares of background fabric

Actually you could use 2 1/2″ strips for all of your dark and medium fabrics in this block but since I’m the “Nickel Quilt Lady” I’m using 5″ squares where I can!

pieces needed for the block

Using a square of the dark or medium and a square of the background fabric make four patches.

2 squares

You will be making two four patches at a time; use one in this block and use the second one in another block.

2 four patches

Cut rectangles from the remaining square of dark or medium fabric by measuring over 4 1/2″ and trimming away 1/2″.  Then in the opposite direction measure over and cut on the 2 1/2″ mark; your two rectangles should measure 2 1/2″ x 4 1/2″.

Short rectangles cut

Sew these rectangles onto the four patch, always having the dark squares in the four patch in the same orientation.

Adding short rectangles

Set the seams and press towards the rectangles.

short rectangles sewn on

Now sew on the 2 1/2″ x 8 1/2″ rectangles. Set the seams and press towards the rectangles.

Long Rectangles

Long Rectangles sewn on B

Cut the remaining background squares in half on the diagonal. I first draw a mark (about 1/2″ long) on the center on the back with a pencil; then I cut in the opposite direction. By doing this I have easily marked the center of the long edge of the triangle and this mark can be useful when sewing these triangles on in the next step.

Squares cut on diagonal

Sew the triangles onto the sides of the pieced square.

Corner triangles ready to sew on

Press towards the triangles.

Corners sewn on

Square this block up to 10″

Finished Four Square Block

OK now it’s time to make a bunch of these and play around with the settings!

Pat