Usually for my projects I try to show you patterns that you can make using the basics without having to buy any extras, but occasionally I find a quilting accessory that makes such a difference that it is well worth telling you about.
This square in a square quilt was made using a Creative Grids template ruler called Quarter Square Triangle and the quilt was made in a fraction of the time that it would have taken me without the ruler. The final quilt size is 50″ square and I have used 60″ of each of the two fabrics – that’s about 1.3/4 yards of each one. You will then need more fabric for the binding, backing and wadding.
Making the square in square quilt blocks
I began by cutting twenty 2.1/2″ strips across the width of the fabric in each of two different fabrics. It makes quite a dramatic quilt if you use two fabrics which contrast sharply, but of course it could also be used to make a jelly roll quilt. Sew the strips together in pairs as shown on the left. Press the strips with the seam allowance towards the dark fabric.
Take two pairs of strips and place them with right sides together and the light fabric facing the dark fabric. Sew the pairs of strips together along the length to create a tube. Repeat with the rest of the strips until you have ten tubes.
Take a tube of strips and fold it in half so that the two short edges are together. Place the quarter square triangle ruler along the folded strip. Line up the black broken line at the bottom of the triangle with the stitch line on your fabric and line up the right hand edge of the ruler just inside the selvedges of the fabric strips – if you haven’t already trimmed them. Taking care to keep your fingers from the edges cut along the triangles of the ruler.
I find that I can cut three triangles as shown above. Then I unfold the rest of the tube of the fabric and cut one more triangle as shown on the right. As the tube is folded, that means that I get seven triangles from each tube of fabric.
At the top of each triangle there are a few stitches from the top line of stitching. Unpick these and your triangle will unfold to make a 6″ square. Sew all these squares together in pairs as shown on the right.
Sew the square in square quilt blocks together
Sew the pairs together to make a square. With most quilts I would then recommend sewing together squares across each row and then sewing the rows together. However for this quilt I found it best to sew together four blocks of four squares and then sew th blocks together. That way you have shorter seams to deal with until the very last seam.
Square in square quilt border
The square in square quilt that I made used sixteen blocks which meant that I had six of the triangles left over as well as the offcuts – more leftover fabric than I would normally like – so I am still thinking about how to use this.
At this stage the square in square quilt measures 44″ square. For the quilt border I added a 2″ strip of the dark fabric across the top and bottom (44″ strips) and then down each side (47″ strips), followed by a 2″ strip of light fabric across the top and bottom (47″ strips) and then down each side (50″). That way I could use the dark fabric for the quilt binding.
I have kept the border simple so the entire quilt is extremely quick to make but a non quilter will think you laboured for months on this square in square quilt!
Here’s the video: