Quilter’s Confession: We love Fat Quarters Bundles! We love to collect them, pet them, admire them… but why is it so hard to cut into them?
Known by many as the “original precut,” the fat quarter is a staple in any fabric stash! It is so versatile and the perfect size for so many quick little projects!
So, what is a fat quarter, you might wonder? Well, it’s a quarter yard of fabric total, but not the way you would get a quarter yard of fabric cut off a bolt at your local quilt shop. It’s actually a half yard of fabric cut in half (on the fold). So, 18×22″. Some people prefer a fat quarter to a normal quarter yard cut because it allows you to see bigger prints better and is an easier size to work with. Or, if you’re like me, you can just collect them if you LOVE the fabric and can’t think of leaving the quilt shop without it, but don’t have a specific project in mind for it yet.
Which brings us to today’s topic. How do we bring ourselves to cut up that beautiful, perfectly-sized piece of fabric? There are some great options! Here is a great infographic that you can download to help you plan your next fat quarter project!
Hello we are Elizabeth Evans and Elizabeth Evans… two girls who married brothers and ended up with the exact same name! We also are the same age, have the same number of children and, are both former school teachers. Together we blog over at Simple Simon and Company where we love to write about sewing, quilting, and the art of homemaking.
Today it’s me (liZ…short name, short hair) that gets the chance to share some thoughts about quilting with you. And the quilt I’m talking about is one that is a current work in progress that I started after being inspired by Jenny’s Alter Ego Quilt Tutorial.
There are two things that I really love about this quilt top tutorial:
#1. How the finished product looks complicated and time consuming when in actuality it is simple enough to be completed by even a novice quilter! (Over at Simple Simon and Company we love simple, beautiful projects….so this tutorial was right up my alley!)
#2. How versatile this tutorial really is. Just by changing up fabric styles and combinations you could make this top countless times and have an entirely different looking quilt each and every time. (And because most of us who quilt are making quilts for others rather than ourselves I can see this fast becoming a go-to quilt top to make for gifts.)
So let’s get down to brass tacks…the making of this quilt top.
(I love this fabric. It has such a happy, vintage vibe and working with it is a pure delight. Yes, a pure delight…some fabric just is that fabulous.)
But before I made my first cut into this fantastic fabric I came up with a plan. Even when I am following a pattern or a tutorial I jot down notes or sketch out my plan in a notebook.
It’s not fancy but it helps me collect my thoughts and gives me a direction for what fabrics I would like to place where. And for this quilt I wanted to try something a little different.
The Alter Ego quilt top is made using alternating 4 Patch and Hourglass quilt blocks. Each of these blocks have 4 different areas or zones. And my idea was to start in the center of the quilt with solid patterns…no white…and slowly add white into the mix until the rows on each end were solid white.
So you can see in my plan where the middle two rows were constructed of solid patterns.
Then the next row on either side of the middle would have ¼ of each block be constructed out of white.
The rows after that would be constructed from blocks where ½ of the area would be made from white.
And finally the two rows on each end would be solid white.
That was my plan but when I got to here I stopped:
I’m not sure I feel like only ½ of the blocks done in white gives the quilt enough white space to transition into an all white row.
Which is where you come in…what do you think?
Here is the original plan:
Solid, ¼ white, ½ white, all white.
But here is what I am thinking I should do instead:
Solid, ¼ white, ½ white, ¾ white, all white.
So that would mean adding two more rows (one on each end of the quilt before the all white row.)
I think this would make the flow better…and I have exactly enough little squares already cut to make it happen.
But here is what it would do to my quilt size:
If I stick with my original plan the quilt will finish at roughly 72” x 72” (which I like…because I LOVE square quilts). However, if I add the two extra rows it will become about 72” wide and 90” long…kind of a strange size.
Which leads me to my question (and the reason my quilt top construction has come to a halt): Do I go with the better design and weird size or better size and a design that is not as strong?
I am leaning toward the stronger design….what do you think?
Here’s where I am at…and can go either way:
While you are thinking you can check out Jenny’s terrific tutorial for The Alter Ego quilt and then you can pop on over to Simple Simon and Company and read about a quilt making tip that saved my marriage when making this quilt top!
(And when I decide which way to go I will be sure and share photos the finished quilt with you!)
Okay, so the truth is out. I LOVE the disappearing nine patch. I have been raving about it like a crazy woman in the shop.
Another thing that I just adore is when someone I have talked to about it, brings back something she’s made and shows off her quilt top! Those things combined equals the best.day.ever!! 😉 This amazing lady (who chose to conceal her identity 🙂 ) has already made two of these quilts. (yes, I said two..and I think she’s planning on a few more!) Her first was with the Soiree charm pack (Lila Tueller) and it was so darling! Well, I just about had a fit when she brought this quilt in…..using our new Micheal Miller fabric and some bright Moda fat quarters! I love how BOY it is….and how bright and fun it is! Thanks Mystery Lady for stopping by to give me my very own show and tell!!
So, thanks again for stopping by to say hi and don’t forget to sign up for our giveaway…..and join us in the forums!!
This week we have been quilting like crazy! One of my favorites was this darling little baby quilt made by Carol, one of the ladies in our beginning quilt class! It turned out so cute! She used a Wee Play Charm Pack and coordinating fat quarters. Isn’t it darling? She backed it with Peas and Carrots, and asked us to machine quilt it with the Counting Sheep pattern by Quiltin’ Bill. It looks amazing! She can make me a quilt anytime!