Clays Choice Quilt Pattern


Clays choice quilt

Clays choice quilt

My Clays Choice quilt is loosely based on the block of the same name, but I played around with the colour placements in order to create the design that I wanted, so the actual block that I ended up using probably goes by a different name altogether!

What I was aiming for was those lilac patches forming a chain down the columns and I’m pleased that I managed that.  Along with the extended pinwheels, I feel that there’s plenty to look at in this quilt.  It may look fairly complex, but it is a simple four patch block made with only squares and half square triangles.

The Clays Choice quilt block has an interesting history.  It was named for Henry Clay, a 19th century American statesman who was known as the Great Pacificator because of his ability to get all sides to compromise in a negotiation.

I thought that it was time I made a rectangular (rather than square) quilt and at 54″ by 66″, this would work well for a single bed with some dropdown on the sides or on a double quilt, to just lay flat on the top.  I have used 1.1/4 yards each of the purple and the yellow fabrics, with 3/4 yard of lilac and 1/2 yard each of blue and white fabrics.  As usual you can buy these fabrics at a 10% discount in this week’s special offer.

Completed clays choice quilt block

Completed clays choice quilt block

Cutting requirements for the clays choice quilt

3,1.2″ squares:  forty lilac, eighty purple, forty yellow

3.7/8″ squares:  twenty each in lilac and purple, twenty each in purple and white, twenty each in white and blue, twenty each in blue and yellow

For the border you will need six 3.1/2″ strips of yellow fabric, cut across the width of fabric.

Make half square triangles

Make half square triangles

Making the clays choice quilt block

Use the 3.7/8″ squares to make half square triangles in the colour combinations listed above.  Place two squares with right sides together and mark a line along the diagonal.  Sew a 1/4″ seam either side of the marked line.  Cut along the line to produce two half square triangles.  Press the seam allowances towards the darker fabric and trim the two corners where the triangle tips stick out.

Clays choice quilt block layout

Clays choice quilt block layout

Lay the patchwork out in four rows of four.  I know that the lilac doesn’t show up too well in this photo, but basically the first and fourth rows are made using a purple square at each end with a blue/white half square triangle and a lilac square between them.  Rows two and three are made with a yellow square, and purple/white, purple/lilac and blue/yellow half square triangles.  The purple/white half square triangles are placed so that they are diagonally opposite each other.

Sew the squares together across each row and then sew the rows to each other.  The clays choice quilt block is 12.1/2″ square at this stage and you will need to make twenty of them.

Sew the blocks in five rows of four

Sew the blocks in five rows of four

Assembling the clays choice quilt

Sew the blocks together in five rows of four blocks each.  Take care that the blocks are all placed so that the lilac runs down the middle of the block with the yellow on the sides.

Clays choice quilt border

Clays choice quilt border

Clays choice quilt border

For the border I have used 3.1/2″ strips of yellow fabric.  You will need two lengths of 48.1/2″ for the top and bottom of the quilt and two lengths of 66.1/2″ for the sides.

That completes the clays choice quilt top.  It is now ready for layering, quilting and binding.  Full details of these steps can be found in the beginner quilting section.

Here’s the video:

Busy weekend ahead – if I can sort myself out in time, I’m dashing down to Malvern this afternoon for the Creative Crafts show.  Although I don’t do any crafts like papercraft or beading, I still find it interesting to look at all the beautiful things that can be made.  Obviously I’m not going to spend any money at all!  Then tomorrow is my daughter Samantha’s birthday so I’m going down to London for lunch with her and my eldest son with his fiancee – what a lovely prospect.


Shelf Liner Ideas


Shelf liner ideas

Shelf liner ideas

Shelf liner ideas are always useful – I tend to have a lot of orphan quilt blocks because I make up individual blocks so that I can show you the tutorial.  These can be made into cushions or bags, but are also very useful to making shelf liners.  I know that some quilters are nervous of the maths of quilting, so I thought that it might be helpful to explain how I decide how much to add to the edges of a quilt block in order to make it the right size for a shelf liner.

I’m not showing the quilt block pattern here, but if you are interested then you can find that on Hope of Hartford quilt block pattern.

Shelf liner ideas – the maths

The first thing to note is that quilt blocks are usually square while shelf liners are more likely to be rectangular.  This particular shelf that I want to line is 13″ by 17″ and the quilt block that I’m using is a 10″ square finished size.  That means that I have to add a total of 7″ to the sides of the block (17″ minus 10″) and a total of 3″ (13″ minus 10″) to the top and bottom of the block.

Add the sides first

Add the sides first

Obviously I want the quilt block to be in the middle of the shelf liner, so I need to split the 7″ so that I can add it on each side.  Half of 7″ is 3.1/2″.  Each one of these strips will have a 1/4″ seam either side, so I need to add 1/2″ seam allowance to each strip.  That means that for the sides I have cut two strips 4″ wide by 10.1/2″ long and sewn them to the sides of the block.

In the same way, I want to split the 3″ for the top and bottom.  Half of 3″ is 1.1/2″ and I will again need to add 1/2″ seam allowance to each strip.  So the measurements for the top and bottom strips are 2″ wide by 17.1/2″ long.  This last measurement is from the 10″ block plus two 3.1/2″ strips as the top and bottom strips have to stretch across the block and side strips.  Sew the strips in place and press.

Layer the shelf liner

Layer the shelf liner

Finishing the shelf liner

Cut rectangles of backing fabric and wadding which are slightly larger than the patchwork top.  Layer these with the wadding on the bottom, then the backing with right side up and then the patchwork with right side down.

Leave a gap and trim the edges

Leave a gap and trim the edges

Pin and using a 1/4″ seam sew three and a half edges, leaving a gap of several inches to turn the shelf liner right side out.

Trim the edges and clip across the corners to reduce bulk.

Turn the shelf liner right side out

Turn the shelf liner right side out

Sew around the edge and around the block

Sew around the edge and around the block

Turn the shelf liner right side out through the gap.  Turn under a small hem across the gap, press, and sew all round the edge of the shelf liner.

As you can see, I have sewn around the edge of the shelf liner, the outline of the quilt block and also the star contained within the block.  This all helps to hold the three layers in place.

I hope that’s helped you with some shelf liner ideas.  Here’s the video:

Thanks for visiting my blog.

I hope to see you again soon.


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