Attic Windows Quilt Pattern

Attic windows quilt

Attic windows quilt

I’ve made the attic windows quilt pattern using fabric patterns to represent the view outside the window.  You’ve probably seen the quilts where a picture is built up outside the window, but for this pattern I just wanted to show you the basic technique of creating an attic windows design.  In order to create the three dimensional look of the window frame I have used three different brown:  medium brown for the uprights with light and dark brown for the horizontal sashing strips.

The quilt measures 51″ by 78″ finished size. I used 9.1/2″ strips of the sky, floral and grass fabrics with 3/4 yard of medium brown, 1/2 yard of light brown and 1/4 yard of dark brown.  For the border I used a further 1/2 yard of the red metallic floral fabric.  You can buy these fabrics at a discount in this week’s special offer.




Cutting requirements for the attic windows quilt

9.1/2″ squares:  three sky, six floral, three grass.

3.1/2″ by 9.1/2″ rectangles: sixteen medium brown.

3.7/8″ squares:  eight medium brown.

2.3/4″ squares:  eight light brown, with eight 1.3/4″ squares of dark brown. Read the pattern in full before you cut these as they can be strip pieced.

3.1/2″ squares:  eight medium brown.

9.1/2″ by 2.1/2″ strips:  twelve light brown, together with 9.1/2″ by 1.1/2″:  twelve dark brown.  Again read the pattern before you cut these as they can be strip pieced.

One 3.1/2″ by 39.1/2″ strip of medium brown.

For the border you will need to cut five 3.1/2″ strips of the red fabric across the width of fabric.

First row

First row

Form the rows

For the first row lay out three blue 9.1/2″ squares with four 9.1/2″ by 3.1/2″ medium brown sashing strips.  That’s one sashing strip at each end of the row and one between each pair of rows.  Sew the pieces together across the row.

Rows 2 and 3

Rows 2 and 3

In order to make the next two rows, use six of the floral squares.  Same idea:  three squares and four sashing strips to each row.

Fourth row

Fourth row

Finally for the fourth row place three green squares with four sashing strips between them.  You’ll see that I have cut the grass fabric in different places.  This is just to provide a little more interest to the quilt.

Sew together light and dark

Sew together light and dark

Make the half square triangle units

These units may look complicated, but the technique is quite simple if you take it step by step.  Begin by sewing together 2.3/4″ lengths of light brown and 1.3/4″ lengths of dark brown along the length.  Cut this panel at 3.7/8″ intervals to make 3.7/8″ squares.

Half square triangle units

Half square triangle units

In order to make the half square triangles you need one 3.7/8″ medium brown square with one light/dark 3.7/8″ square (top left of the photo).  Place these right sides together taking care that the dark brown strip runs across the bottom.  Mark a line along the diagonal from bottom right to top left.

Sew a 1/4″ seam either side of the marked line and cut along the line.  This produces two triangles each with a seam along the base.  Each one will open up to form a half square triangle as shown on the right of the photo.  As you can see, these are totally different from each other.  The one on the bottom with a dark brown strip across the bottom is the one you need.  Unfortunately the one above it with a corner of dark brown cannot be used in this project.  I have put mine to one side and will probably use them to make a bag of some sort.

Sashing strips

Sashing strips

Make the sashing strips

Sew together the 3.1/2″ and 1.1/2″ strips of light brown and dark brown along the length.  Cut this panel into 9.1/2″ strips.

Each sashing strip contains two half square triangles and three 9.1/2″ light/dark brown strips.  That means the row starts and ends with a strip and there is a half square triangle between each pair of strips.

Add squares at each end

Add squares at each end

Here I have a confession:  I had a brain freeze and completely forgot that I would need a 3.1/2″ medium brown square at each end.  I had already taken the photos so I have no option but to describe these strips as I actually made them.  So now add a 3.1/2″ medium brown square at each end of the strip.

One thing to be careful with:  it is important for the dark brown strip to be even across the width of the quilt.  When sewing the sections together across the row, match the dark brown lines before you sew.  Then if there is a slight mis match in the sizes of the pieces you can trim across the bottom of the row.  Although I am sure that your piecing is far more accurate than mine so you probably won’t need to do any trimming!

You need to make four of these sashing strips.

Add the top sashing

Add the top sashing

Assemble the attic windows quilt

Sew the 39.1/2″ medium brown strip to the top of the first row.

Add sashing between the rows

Add sashing between the rows

Now sew a sashing strip to the bottom of the first row.  Sew the second row of blocks to the bottom of the sashing strip.  Continue down the rows, adding sashing strips between each pair of rows.  Take care to match each half square triangle with the upright medium brown sashing strip above and below it.

Red border for the quilt

Red border for the quilt

Add the attic windows quilt border

I have introduced another fabric altogether for the border.  It’s a red metallic floral fabric which I thought would frame the quilt nicely.  I’ve cut 3.1/2″ strips.  You’ll need two lengths of 39.1/2″ for the top and bottom and two lengths of 57.1/2″ for the sides.

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

Here’s the video:

https://youtu.be/NKWPN_P80zQ

Botanical Gardens Tenerife

Botanical Gardens Tenerife

Last week I managed to sort out my photos of the Botanical Gardens in Tenerife.  To see my photos click on botanical gardens or click on the photo.

Rolling star quilt pattern

Rolling star quilt pattern

Two weeks ago I asked for name suggestions for the Rolling Star quilt.  You sent me a wonderful variety of names – all far more imaginative than the name that I had used.  Many, many thanks to everyone who commented on the website or emailed me with suggestions.

The name that I have chosen from these suggestions is CRANBERRY SKY.  Isn’t that a wonderful, evocative name?  Thank you Betty for the suggestion.  I will be emailing you for your postal address so that I can send you a pack of fat quarters.

 

 

Botanical Gardens – Tenerife – Photos

Botanical Gardens Tenerife

Botanical Gardens Tenerife

The Botanical Gardens in Puerto de la Cruz, Tenerife, are stunning.  They were set up in 1788 by order of King Carlos III of Spain.  He wanted tropical plants from his overseas territories for his palace in Madrid.  These plants needed somewhere to get used to the colder climate of Spain and the Botanical Gardens were set up as a halfway point to allow them to acclimatise.  In fact, the gardens are still known as the Gardens of Acclimatisation.  The gardens are incredibly well stocked and are highly renowned – on a par with places like Kew Gardens.

These red hot pokers definitely beat any that I have ever grown!




Winter colour

Bougainvillea flowers

Bougainvillea flowers

The whole area of Puerto de la Cruz, where we were staying, is full of colour.  I’m familiar with bougainvillea from my childhood in Africa, but rather surprisingly I had never noticed the small white petals right in the middle.  I have since found out that the white forms the actual flower while the pink or purple petals surrounding it are actually leaves known as bract.

Fan shaped plants

Fan shaped plants

The variety of plants was amazing.  These fan shaped plants had similar leaves to a banana plant, but I have only ever seen bananas growing in a more tree like form.

All the plants were well labelled, which was a great help for me, but I wasn’t able to photograph asll the labels – and of course my memory isn’t up to remembering any of the names of the plants.

Muscular tree

Muscular tree

Unusual trees

Some of the trees looked completely different from the ones that I am used to.  This one had nodules along all the branches which reminded me of muscular arms – either that or balloon sculptures.

Adventitious roots

Adventitious roots

And this one was fascinating.  Those are all roots that you can see – known as adventitious roots.  they are also known as aerial prop roots and support the main structure of the tree.  It allows the tree to grow over a larger area than it would otherwise.

Feathery flowers

Feathery flowers

Glorious colour

Coming from cold and gloomy Birmingham, it was an absolute treat to see all these wonderful colours.  In this particular flower there were droplets of moisture collected between the petals – glistening like diamonds.

Calliandra

Calliandra

I’ve seen this plant as a houseplant in the UK.  It was lovely seeing it growing outdoors in great profusion.  From the labels that I did take photos of, I think that this is called Calliandra and comes originally from Bolivia.

Wallisia

Wallisia

This one was stunning – the flowers seemed almost to be a part of the leaf structure.  I’m guessing that the spikes turned purple along the whole length with time. Gorgeous.  It comes from Ecuador.

Water section

Water section

Water Plants

Behind a wall we nearly missed the steps up to this wonderful water section.  The water was very still so the reflections of the plants made a magnificent feature.

Bird of paradise

Bird of paradise

Finally my favourite flower – and I know that I always show you one of these when I head off to warmer climes.  It’s Strelizia, also known as Bird of Paradise.  They bring back wonderful childhood memories and I’m always thrilled when I find one during my holidays.

The Botanical Gardens are well worth a visit and I’m so pleased that we were able to spend a morning there.  I can quite understand why the King of Spain wanted to transfer some of these magnificent plants to his palace in Madrid back in the eighteenth century!

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