What To Do?

Some time ago I was gifted a complete kit with pattern of the Safe Haven Quilt by Thimbleberries. It wasn’t exactly my typical style, but I thought it would do me good to use an actual pattern, different color scheme, larger size pieces and a little applique.

So I made the blocks. And enjoyed it.

But, then I really looked at the setting and discovered I didn’t like it. It isn’t so bad in the pattern, but I have seen pictures of finished quilts on beds, and it isn’t for me. At all. I am sure many people do like it very much. Maybe I have just gone as far out of my comfort zone as I can manage.

So, what to do?

A Quilt Block By Any Name…

Many of you asked what pattern I used for Miss Jenna’s quilt.  I didn’t know if it had a name…I had seen something similar and just made it work.

However, it turns out that it does have a name, and it is an old and common block:  Buckeye Beauty….or…a lot of other names, like

Double Four Patch
Gay Scrap Quilt
Give This One a Name
Going to Chicago
Hour Glass
Jacob’s Ladder
New Four Patch
Northern Lights
Railroad
Railroad Crossing
World’s Fair
Railroad
World’s Fair

More information here: http://www.generations-quilt-patterns.com/buckeye-beauty-quilt-block.html  and here: http://www.quilterscache.com/B/BuckeyeBeautyBlock.html

Mine is based on 2-1/2″ squares and 5″ squares for the HST sections–squared up to 4-1/2.

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I think what makes Miss Jenna’s quilt look so different is the use of three colors.  It is a great block by any name, and at least we all know.

CALICO ROSE QUILTALONG: Fabric and First Cuts

Today is the beginning of the Calico Rose Quiltalong, and it is all about deciding on  fabric and CUTTING.

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First you should choose a size to make:  SMALL–a throw that uses 5 stars and four alternating blocks.  Finished size about 48″ square; MEDIUM–This is the size I am making this time.  It uses 13 stars and 12 alternating blocks.  Finished size about 72″  square; LARGE:  This is the size of the original Calico Rose.  It uses 25 star and 24 alternating blocks.  Finished size 96″ square.

Quick Note:  If you are planning on using 2-1/2″ squares as your base,  a SMALL will finish at 64″ and a MEDIUM at 96″.  A large would be 128″ square, but I don’t recommend that–most quilting frames won’t hold one that size. The number of cuts you need for each size will be identical to the 2″ quilt, but you will need more background fabric.  Please plan accordingly. Using the quantity suggested for the next size up should work.  I hope.  But you might want to get an extra yard just to make yourself feel better.

Another quick note:  Some people have wondered why there isn’t a 4×4 or 6×6 (or any other number) block layout option.  You are free to make one, of course, but the final look will be different.  The symmetry comes from having odd numbers.

FABRIC NEEDS:

1. A lot of scraps.  Some should be at least 4″ square  for the points of the stars.   (Read 5″ square if you are using 2-1/2″ squares for your base.  Yes, I can hear you thinking…”I can use my charm packs.”) You can have a set color scheme (blues), controlled scrappy like the original (blue, yellow, green), or anything goes.  I am an “anything goes” person this time.  It is hard to judge how much scrap you need, but, unless you are a very new quilter, it will not be anything close to all the scrap you have. Just get a big pile–several double handfuls at least, especially for a large quilt.  Sort through.  Make piles.  Remember former projects and friends and favorites.  Rejoice in the abundance.   This is supposed to be FUN!

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2. Background fabric.  I am (no surprise here) using white.  You can use any color, but keep contrast in mind.  I recommend a single color for the background.  One less variable. You will need 1-1/2 yards  for SMALL, 3 yards for MEDIUM, 5-1/2 yards for LARGE.  I have calculated generously to allow for the inevitable error.  Hopefully this will work for you.

CUTTING, for FIRST STEP ONLY:

1. Cut small colored squares.  You need a lot of 2″ squares.  For SMALL:  cut 300 or so, MEDIUM:  approximately 800, LARGE: about 1500.  Some of these are the centers of the star blocks and some are for the border.  Just cut along–you don’t need to do it all at once.  You have time.  You will have some left over, but that is seed to grow a future quilt.

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2. There will be more cutting of fabric as each step comes along.  But, for now just get those little squares ready for the centers of the star blocks.  Set the rest of your fabric–colored scraps and background fabric, too–aside.  Clearly label it “Calico Rose Quilt” so you don’t accidentally cut it up for a different project next week.  🙂

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3. Wait in eager anticipation for the next set of directions.  They will be out Friday, April 10.

Thanks for joining in. Let me know how this goes.