So…this is take two at a baby quilt for my cousin’s baby boy.
I won an AccuQuilt GO! last year on a blog giveaway. (be patient, it makes sense) One of the dies I requested was the Dresden Plate. As I was trying to figure out what to make for the baby quilt, I decided to spend some time with that die. I also had it in the back of my head that I’d like to use one of the stripey novelty prints I had – one is robots/space, the other is pirates.
I grabbed some larger fabric scraps and cut some of every shape with my new Dresden Plate die. I looked at the flat-ended ones and thought they could go together like a tumbler. So I sewed them together (in pink…) and thought they looked interesting.
I ended up doing this –
I cut out about 160 individual fan blades from probably about 8 fabrics. More of some, less of others. I kept most in the medium value, with very few darks.
Then I sewed two blades together into pairs, then pairs into foursomes. Then foursomes into eight-somes, and into sixteen-somes. (You get it – sixteen blaces, all in a row). There I stopped, because it was time for trimming and I wanted to be able to cut with my 24″ ruler without folding.
This was where I had planned to stop – I was going to square up the ends, sew them into the quilt, and off I’d go. I didn’t like the scale, though, of having a 5″ strip of wedges inset into a 3″ strip of pirate ships. So I took one of the 16-somes strips and cut it in half. I like the thinner strip better! It’s a matter of the scale of it.
As you can see, not all the ends are perfect. No problem! The width of the strips is 5 1/4″ to 5 1/2″. So I evened up one edge. Cut a 2.5″ strip, then a second 2.5″ strip, then had another bit of scrap at the other end. The strips look like they are made of wide and narrow tumblers. Since I cut at slightly different places on every strip (based on where I had to cut to even up the edge), the patches are not all identical in size, but I like the individuality it gives them.
Then I sewed sixteen-somes into thirtytwo-somes.
Then I took my striped fabric, which happened to have these great stripes. Very carefully, I cut the strips apart lengthwise along the fabric. For one, I cut 1/2″ off the bottom of the black stripe. I wanted to minimize the black and orange stripes, so I buried them in the seam allowance. For the other, I cut exactly on the line between the yellow and red stripes. Trust me…do this 12 inches at a time.
I alternated the theme fabric with the pieced rows – I ended up with one extra thirtytwo-some strip and one extra strip of shark fins but that was because I wanted to start with ships at the top and end with shark fins at the bottom.
You could wait to square it up until it’s quilted, but I went ahead and squared it up. The top is about 40″ x 60″.
What works for me on this quilt is the scale and the value. The scale of the patchwork strips is similar to that of the theme fabric. When I laid the full-sized fan strips on there it was too much angled fan blade and the ships and sharks faded away. Then I tried cutting the strips in half and sewing them back together (to get more of a crazy-quilt effect). I didn’t like that much, either, because of the scale. The pieced strips felt too tall for the print. As for value, I made sure to keep the values in the medium range with only one foray into dark territory.