Monday, July 13, 2015

Starburst Pattern

Greetings from Chicago! I've been busy working on another Starburst quilt top and I finally have the time to write out the directions and even take a few photos.  So many of you have asked me for the pattern, thank you! Truly, I do appreciate it.




Here's what you'll need to make a Starburst quilt:

1 print fabric jelly roll (or 27 - 2 1/2" WOF strips)
1 solid jelly roll, or 11 WOF strips measuring 2 1/2" wide
batting measuring 46" x 46"
2 7/8 yards backing fabric (this is sewing a backing with one center seam. You'll have plenty of backing fabric left over to use as binding, if it matches your quilt top.)
1/2 yard fabric for binding, or 5 left over strips for a scrappy binding

For this Starburst I am using an Amy Butler jelly roll and a Moda Bella white solid jelly roll. Remember, you can always make your own 2 1/2" strips. It takes 27 print strips and 11 solid strips to make nine blocks for a three by three setting. Your finished blocks will measure 14" and the finished quilt will measure 42" square. Let's get started!

First, choose 3 print strips for each block. Two of the strips should be duplicates or blend well together, and the third strip should contrast. You'll use the third strip for the center squares and you really want that square to pop. Amy's jelly roll has a lot of duplicates so I'm going to use duplicate strips for the first two strips and a contrasting strip for the center squares.

I have six blue color sets, three teal and three green, along with lots of single strips so I've decided to use three from each color way. I've organized them into the sewing sets for each block, but don't hold me to these sets.  I may end up changing my mind as I start sewing them together. Take a few minutes to play with your strips and organize them for cutting.




For each block you'll need to cut:
8 white 2.5" squares
8 fabric 2.5" x 3.25" rectangles
8 white 2.5" x 3.25" rectangles
17 fabric 2.5" squares
8 fabric 2.5" squares from the contrasting strip.

First, make your half square triangles. I have a Sizzix Fabi and use that to cut my half square triangles (see below.) If you don't have a cutting machine, here's a quick and easy way to make half square triangles.  

After some research I found a way to make 2.5" half square triangles using 2 1/2" strips. To do this I cut rectangles from the fabric strip in 3.25" in lengths and pair them with a solid fabric the same size.  Using the 45 degree line on my ruler I placed the 45 degree line along the bottom of the rectangle and slid it until I could draw a sewing line from the upper left corner to the bottom of the rectangle.  




I then slid the ruler further along the fabric until the corner of my ruler was at the end of the fabric.  Keeping the 45 degree line along the bottom of the strip I drew a second sewing line.








I sewed along the lines and had a 1/2" seam between each half square triangle. 
Voila! Two 2.5" half square triangles were born! Snip off the little dog ears and you're ready to sew. 







Once you've sewn your half square triangles together it's time to lay out your block.  


I sew each row together, from left to right. Press seams to the left in the top row, to the right in the next row, and continue the pattern so the rows will nest together.  





Next, sew the first row to the second, the third to the fourth, the fifth to the sixth and add the seventh to the sixth. When I sew the rows together I press the seams open. I find that my blocks lie flatter when I do this. Next, sew the first two rows to the second two and, finally, add the last group of the bottom three rows. Each block should measure 14 1/2" squared at this point.



Once you've made your nine blocks, put them on your design wall and play around with the layout.  When you're satisfied with the layout sew the blocks in the first row together, from left to right.  Do the same with the second and third rows. Then sew the first row to the center row and, finally, add the bottom row.    When your quilt is finished it should measure 42" square, perfect for a baby quilt or a wall hanging. You can add a border if you want to make the quilt larger, or add more rows!

This is my Starburst using a Kaffe jelly roll. 



Layer your quilt top, batt and backing and quilt as desired.  I like circular quilting on my Starburst tops. The circles give the quilt a unique texture and complement all the points and straight lines in the pattern. When you've finished quilting, square the top and bind. I like a scrappy binding. 

Below is my Starburst that I made for the Sewtopia Chicago Michael Miller fabric challenge. Circular quilting is very easy once you get past the first two or three rounds. Check out Jacquie Gering's class on Craftsy, "Creative Quilting With Your Walking Foot." It's fabulous!




As soon as I finish my Starburst Amy Butler top I'll post it in a new blog.  Watch for it on Instagram too, where I post often as @julieqquilts.  

If you make a quilt using my Starburst pattern please share a photo or two. And let me know if you enjoyed making the quilt! Feel free to share your feedback anytime. 

I hope you’re inspired today!  
Julie



Follow me on Instagramjulieqquilts  - there you'll see lots of photos of my contemporary quilting adventures!


* I have a Sizzix Fabi and I use that to cut my half square triangles.  I have never had to square a block after cutting it with my Fabi and sewing it together.  I have to say it does cut the time it takes to make a block! You put right sides together, feed the strips through the Fabi and your blocks come out ready to sew together. It's as simple as that!





A perfect half square triangle every time!


Starburst © 2015  by Julia Quigley,  julieqquilts™  All rights reserved.  This pattern is meant for your personal use only. Please do not reproduce, resell or reproduce for commercial use without express written consent from Julia Quigley. 

Sunday, May 3, 2015

My Starburst Quilt - A Fun Pattern to Make!

In April I attended Sewtopia in Chicago. It was great! One of the activities was the Michael Miller Fabric challenge.  I couldn't wait to cut into this fun fabric to make my Starburst quilt. I used the fat quarters and added some Michael Miller white solid and a package of Cotton Couture solids 5" squares.

If you follow my blog you know I love precuts and I like to take a conventional block or pattern and make it with precuts.  Sometimes that means "unconventional" block sizes and sewing seam sizes.   Since I usually make my Starburst using jelly rolls, I went ahead and cut my fat quarters into 2 1/2" strips. The blocks I made called for several half square triangles.  After some research I found a way to make 2.5" half square triangles using 2 1/2" strips.

To do this I cut rectangles from the fabric strip into 3 1/4" in lengths and pair them with a solid fabric the same size.  Using the 45 degree line on my ruler I placed the 45 degree line along the bottom of the rectangle and slid it until a drawn line went from the upper left corner to the bottom of the rectangle.  




I then slid the ruler further along the fabric until it was at the end of the fabric.  Keeping the 45 degree line along the bottom of the strip I drew a second line.








I sewed along the lines and cut between them.  Voila! 2.5" half square triangles were born!






For each block I cut 8 white 2.5" squares, 8 fabric 2.5 x 3.25" rectangles to pair with the white 3.25" rectangles, 17 fabric 2.5" squares  and 8 fabric 2.5" squares from a different strip (These 8 squares are the center squares and should be a different colorway.)  

Here is my Starburst block, ready to be sewn, row by row.



I pressed my seams to one side so they would nest when sewing rows together.  I like a flat block so I press seams open when sewing rows together.  




Voila - here's what you end up with.  I love this quilt pattern.  I like to use circular quilting, following the edge of my walking foot.

 If you make one please share your photo - I'd love to see your quilt top!

How do you use your precuts? What’s your favorite precut?

I hope you’re inspired today!  
Julie

Follow me on Instagram - julieqquilts  - there you'll see lots of photos of my contemporary quilting adventures!

Starburst copyright 2015 Julia Quigley,  julieqquilts. All rights reserved.  Please do not reproduce, resell or reproduce for commercial use without express written consent from Julia Quigley. 






Friday, January 2, 2015

“You made that with a layer cake???”

I Love Layer Cakes!


“Dwell”by Camille Roskelley, using Sandy Gervais’ Soho Chic

All my quilting friends know I love a good layer cake.  There’s so much you can do with a layer cake. Why do we buy precuts? If you’re like me you probably like the fact that you have the entire fabric collection.

When you see a pattern that you like take a few minutes to read the fabric requirements and see if you can substitute a precut collection for the yardage.  It works! I’ve become quite adept at converting pattern yardage into a layer cake when ever I can. 

Camille Roskelley’s Dwell quilt, from her book Simply Retro, is one recent example.  I love Camille’s book and after I picked up Sandy Gervais’ Soho Chic layer cake last year I knew Dwell would be the perfect quilt to use this layer cake fabric.  It took a little bit of tinkering to make it work. I didn't have enough of some squares to follow the directions calling for houses with a matching roof and walls. So I used a coordinating roof fabric to the walls and you know what? It looks fine! I really like how this quilt top turned out.

When you think about using a layer cake, think out of the box.  There are lots of different ways you can use your precuts.

How do you use your precuts? What’s your favorite precut?

I hope you’re inspired today!  
Julie

Follow me on Instagram - julieqquilts  - there you'll see lots of photos of my contemporary quilting adventures!

Friday, December 5, 2014

Quick and Easy Wine Coasters

These wine coasters are the perfect Christmas, birthday or house warming gift for family and friends. And of course it never hurts to include a nice bottle of wine too! These coasters are also a great way to use your fabric scraps, left over charm squares and layer cake squares.

To make each coaster you'll need five 5" squares of coordinating fabrics.  I use the same fabric for the top four squares and a coordinating fabric for the bottom square. 


To begin, press each of the four top squares in half, creating a 2 1/2" x 5" rectangle.  Draw a circle on the wrong side of your bottom square. I use a 4 1/2" inch diameter circle.


Next, place your four top rectangles on top of your backing square following the photos here:




Turn down rectangle #1 to place the left half of rectangle #4 beneath it.

Pin at each fold, you'll only need 4 pins.  Sew around, following your drawn line on the backing square.  Remember, slow and steady wins the race when sewing these circles.  Take your time and your circles will be fine. I used my walking foot to keep the layers from shifting as I sewed. Some sewing machine companies make a circular embroidery attachment which will move the fabric around in a perfect circle. 


When you're finished trim as close to the stitching as you can, being careful to not cut the stitches. 

Clip around the circle. If you have pinking shears these will also work and will save you from clipping around the edge of each coaster.


Turn your coaster inside out, use a stylus to gently shape and push out the outer curve of each coaster and voila! You're done!




Cheers!

If you make a set of wine coasters please tag me, @julieqquilts, on Instagram so I can see what you've made. Follow me on Instagram - julieqquilts - there you'll see lots of photos of my quilting adventures.

I hope you're inspired today!
Julie



Friday, November 21, 2014

Who Starts A Christmas Quilt in November?!?

I do! I can't wrap my head around making Christmas quilts in July. I just can't.  I can make a Christmas quilt in November...with Christmas music playing and freezing temperatures outside. Yes, I am inspired!

I saw a picture of a quilt block and I decided to de-construct it.  Of course, I could have looked the block up online, found it in a book, the usual ways to choose and construct quilt blocks. But when you're procrastinating it's kind of fun of do it the hard way. After some trial and error constructing test blocks out of scraps, I was able to construct the quilt block using a layer cake and some additional fabric.

It started out as a lap quilt but after seeing 9 blocks on my design wall I decided to go the table runner route.  I'm still working on it but here's what I've done so far.

I'm using Deb Strain's "Christmas Countdown" layer cake. You know how I love my precuts, especially layer cakes and I wanted to use this particular one this year.  I picked several medium and darks, a few lights, and stayed away from the greens because the background is green. In hindsight I wish I'd used more of the cremes and stayed away from the black tone fabric. Oh well, you know what they say about hindsight...

Such a pretty fabric line!
Here is the first section of the block. Add 3 more and you have the complete block.
Voila!

From the layer cake square cut it into 4 5" squares (you can also use charm packs.)




Cut each square on the diagonal and you'll end up with 8 triangles from the layer cake 10" square or 2 triangles from a charm square.
Be sure to have a wide variety in color and tone.
From your back ground fabric cut 5" squares and subcut diagonally to make the triangles. For each block section sew one background triangle to one layer cake triangle. You'll need 4 of these units for each block.

Next, choose 4 more triangles (make sure none of your layer cake fabrics match, keep it scrappy!) From your background fabric cut four 2 1/4" x 7" rectangles. You'll sew one rectangle to each triangle and end up with this:




Squaring up each section is really important.  If you square your blocks properly you'll have perfect points in the finished block. Make sure your layer cake triangle, sewn to the background triangle, is what you use to center your block. I centered my blocks so they were 6" which translates to 5 1/2" finished. 

Sew each of the 4 sections together and press your seams open at each step so your blocks lie flat.

As I made each block I put it on my design wall. However, when I had the 9 blocks on my design wall I thought the finished quilt looked too "muddy." My fault, I should have used lighter layer cake pieces, eliminating the blacks.  So, I decided to make 2 table runners - one with 4 squares and one with 5. Here's the one I'm quilting today, with 4 blocks and a skinny border that will measure 1 1/2" finished. I used left over layercake squares to make the backing.

 I'll post more photos in a few days after I've finished the first runner. Our little peanut comes home from college today for Thanksgiving break and the big kids come home on Wednesday so I won't get much sewing done. And I'm happy about that - I love having my kids back home!

I hope you're inspired today!
Julie 

Follow me on Instagram - julieqquilts - there you'll see lots of photos of my quilting adventures.