I decided in May of this year that I wanted to make quilts for both of my nieces for Christmas. Knowing that it was going to take me a good 6 months, I decided to start right away. As the first quilt is coming together, I have also decided that I want my local quilt shop to long-arm quilt both quilts. Just another reason I need to kick it in gear & get these quilt tops done!
I decided on just simple patchwork patterns for both quilt tops since I think it will complement the fabrics for both and also I didn't want the girls to fight over them. Oh, who am I kidding. They probably won't even like them, but I can dream, right? ;)
So I started with Ava's quilt. Mostly just because I already had the fabric I thought was perfect for her. (Again this was Hobby Lobby fabric that I bought prior to taking the beginner's class at the quilt shop. It just does not cooperate as well as nice quilting cotton fabric.) Pictured below are the 18 fat quarters I started with. Shades of pink, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple. Also a little white and a little brown.
Also pictured is my sewing machine that my husband bought for me in January. As much as I would love to have a nice, expensive Bernina, I just couldn't justify it since I had just started sewing & wasn't sure if I would stick with it. So I chose this Brother machine that has lots of the same features as the Bernina 440 QE that I used at the quilt shop. I seriously love this machine!
For this quilt, I cut my fat quarters into six strips, 3" x 21". I then sewed 4 strips together and pressed the seams open. I pressed the seams open for this project because I am just doing this randomly and without a pattern, so I didn't want to have to plan around the seam directions. Then, I cut the 4 strips across, horizontally, into seven pieces, each measuring 3" x 10.5". Which gave me a stack like this:
Then I picked out 4 sets of strips and sewed them together to make a block, 4 squares across x 4 squares down. Then I pressed the seams open again. This block measures 10.5" x 10.5". I checked my blocks with a square and squared up any that needed adjusting.
After that I started laying them out on my bedroom floor to see how they all looked together & also to decide what dimensions to make the final quilt. I decided on 50" x 70", so 5 blocks x 7 blocks. I had made 36 blocks just in case I decided to make my quilt 60" x 60", so I have one leftover block that I plan on using on the back of the quilt. I also had some scraps leftover from the cutting & piecing of the strip sets, so I am thinking I will try to incorporate them into the back of the quilt as well.
I hope to get these blocks sewn together by the end of the week. I'll keep you posted!