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A quiltlet is a baby quilt.  Tiny.  Small.  Some might even call it a potholder.

What is it’s purpose?  To join together with other quiltlets to make a bigger quilt.  One of my guilds has a quiltlet quilt.  All members have been asked to make a quiltlet – an 8.5″ block, bound, with apron strings for tying it to other member’s quiltlets.

Seems simple, right?  To make an 8″ block that represents you.  It could be anything – a traditional block, an invented block, applique, representational, abstract, and any color under the rainbow.  As long as it finishes to 8.5″ square, and has strings, anything goes.

Only it’s not so simple.  I thought of so many great ideas.  Only to find that they were 9″ blocks.  Or 14″.  I wanted a star, but not a sawtooth star, and bright colors.  In order to make sure that I had mine in before next month’s quilt show, I invited some friends over to my house for a quiltlet sewing day.  I had two weeks to figure this out, and figured it out at 9pm the night before.

I made it of 2″ finished equilateral triangles.  Bright greens with a blue star floating in the center.  I love it!  I was sad to have to give it up at the meeting, so I made another one, which is right now just a block.

I figured something out that I never knew.  I cut this using specialty rulers.  I knew I had an equilateral triangle ruler because it’s purple.  But I recently won a stash giveaway and in there was a trirecs ruler.  At first glance they’re the same ruler.  A trirecs ruler is designed to make ‘peaky and spike’ or ‘triangle in a square’ blocks.  Fortunately, I only cut about 6 pieces before I realized what I was doing.

If you’re in the area, look for my block on the quiltlet banner in April!

Thanks for stopping by –


A few days I posted about my scrap bin.  I have pictures!

These are the two quilts that I made from pulling most of the pink scraps out of the bin:  (Being scrap quilts, there are tons of seams and they need a still good pressing!)

  As mentioned, I was very surprised to find out that I’d sewn together more than 400 inches of scraps into one long huge strip.  So I decided to make two smaller quilts out of it instead of one great big quilt.  It was a decision of porportions.  I thought with all the scraps in one place I’d need thicker sashing strips to balance it and I just didn’t want to.  I wanted simple and small.

I made the light pink one first.  I am surprised, but shouldn’t be, to find out that I like the darker pink one better.  The light pink in the second quilt is the leftovers from my daughter’s bed quilt.  At night, when I was picking fabrics, I decided that a 1″ finished pink would be fine and determined I had enough scraps to make it happen.  In the light of day, I started cutting for a 1 1/2″ finished pink and really eeked out the last few inches of the border.  But now it’s gone, and I have space for new fabric!  Same for the dark pink.  It was a 1/2 yard piece that I’d hard a hard time using because it was splotchy. 

After the quilts were done, I had them sitting on the ironing board waiting to be pressed.  What did I discover but a HOLE in the white sashing!

  Nice and small, easy to overlook.  Once upon a time, when my daughter was small, she thought that experimenting with scissors on my fabric was better than experimenting on the fabric in the scrap bin.  Every once in a while I’ll come across another piece that’s been sliced at the fold.  I cut around the great big 2″ slice, but missed it’s little brother.

Since the quilt top was done and dusted, and it’s to be a charity quilt, there’s no way I was ripping out that entire strip and replacing it.  I also don’t seem to have any interfacing right now.  So I put a patch on it.  Just like my grandma would have.  And from a distance it looks OK.  (The patch is to the left of the brightly striped fabric in the middle row.)

Well, not everything’s intended to win a blue ribbon!   This is one of those times where done is better than perfect.

Wait, there’s more!  This is my scrap bin AFTER pulling all those pink fabrics out:

More scrap quilts to come!

I have occasionally tested patterns and quilts for a few quilt designers.  It lets me try out new patterns, see how other designers think and write, and lets me edit something other than my own writing.

I was quite surprised to get an email out of the blue for someone I’d tested for before, almost a year ago.  Three of us took up the challenge, and a challenge it was because she needed edits and a finished quilt top in a week.  All zigging and zagging aside (see my post on Murphy’s Law!) I got it done in 6 days.

While I can’t show you the whole quilt (yet!), below is a super close-up of part of the middle.  The multicolor yellow print does have sequin-y things on it…your eyes are not decieving you. 

I like this pattern – I think it’s really flexible…it can be made in loads of sizes, colors, and from any type of fabric – charm packs, layer cakes, jelly rolls, FQs.  Just add a yard of this and a yard of that to all those scraps and watch it come together!

About six months or more ago I was lucky enough to be able to make a quilt for a new book that was going to be published by  The book is called Once upon a Time Fairy Tale Quilts by Beth Helfter

The book was going to be at Quilt Market, and also the author.  But the poor little quilts weren’t expected to be shown in the booth due to space reasons.  She told me that all the quilts were coming, though!

I’m looking – searching – obsessively hunting – for blogs and pics showing all of the new goodies from Quilt Market.   Imagine my delight when I stumble across a photo from showing my quilt in all it’s blurry glory!  Here’s it not so fuzzy!


What to do with a pack of charm squares that you just can’t bear to cut up? 

Over a year ago I bought a charm pack of 5” squares – Swanky by Moda.  I loved them, and still do.  They were a splurge at the time.  How can a pack of charm squares be a splurge?  I’d just gotten laid off, not a surprise due to my company’s overall performance.  We’d just sold our house for less than we paid for it.  Had moved from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean.  And we wanted to buy a new house, believing in the sell low / buy low concept.  My old job required insane hours and was full of pressure.  I hadn’t seriously quilted in 3 years, so 90% of the fabric in my stash was 3-12 years old.  The colors in this charm pack were bright and clear.  The prints were fun.  And I wanted them.  So I bought them.

And there they sat.  On the bookshelf, in the quilt emporium, just above my book collection.  Waiting for an a-ha moment.

Which came, courtesy of a library book.  I love guilds – I currently belong to three, all different in style.  One guild has a great library, full of new and current books.  One of the books I checked out last month had a quilt that had rectangles bisected with strips.  I think it was intended for layer cakes.  I looked at the picture, looked at my charm pack, and knew what I was going to do.

The little quilt finishes to 27.5” square with 36 blocks set 6×6.  Each block finishes to 4.5” square. 

Fabric Required:

One charm pack.  Mine had 33 squares in it, so I added 3 random squares from my stash for a total of 36 squares.

Quarter yard (full length is better than a fat quarter) of white fabric.

Quarter yard for 3-2.5” strips of binding.

7/8 yard for backing

Cutting and Sewing –

Cut the white fabric into 1” strips.  No picture, I’m sure you can figure it out!

Subcut into 72 1″ x 5” strips.

Take the 5” squares and cut a 3.5” section off.  I cut through about 4 at a time.  Since I was cutting multiple squares at once, I found it easier to have more of the ruler on the fabric, which is why I measured and cut the 3.5” piece and not the 1.5” piece.

Sew a 1”x5” strip of white into the middle of the cut charm squares.  Press to the charm square.  The cool thing about insetting a 1” strip is that you have the illusion that the pattern continues.  This only works if you pay close attention.  To get this effect, make sure you sew the white strip along the edge you cut for both pieces.  In the picture to the left, that would be the edge of each piece with the blue/pink flower.

Cut, again.  Cut the block into a 3.5” section and a 1.5” section.  This time I only cut one piece at a time.

Sew, again  Inset the remaining 1” x 5” strips of white into your blocks.  When you sew, make sure that the seams for the original strip of white will line up when the block is finished.  See how the thread/seam line on the short piece lines up with the fold on the longer piece?  Press to the charm square again.

Lay out the blocks on your design wall or floor.  I laid mine out so that I ended up with continuous strips of white running through. 

I didn’t put a border on mine.  Of course, you can do what you want!

Baste, Quilt, and Bind as desired.  I quilted straight down the middle of the white bars.

Tadah!  Done and done.

Want a teaser?  I’m developing a pattern for this quilt with a shortcut piecing technique – look for it in my etsy shop, Aspen Hill.

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About Aspen Hill

Welcome to Aspen Hill! I'm Deb. Quilter, lover of fabric. Fan of completed projects. Quilt Pattern Designer. My blog is my space where I get to share quilting, sewing, and other creative pursuits. Come back often!

You can find my quilts, doll clothes, and patterns on Etsy.