Providence Quilt – Free Pattern

Providence quilt

Providence quilt

For this Providence quilt I have used several variations on the Providence quilt block.  My aim was to produce secondary designs threading through the quilt and I’m quite pleased with the way it has turned out.  Sometimes my quilts don’t look a bit like the original idea in my head, but this time it worked.  I have used nine blocks which are all 15″ square finished size.

The quilt measures 53″ square and I have used 1 yard each of dark blue metallic and red fabrics, together with 1.1/2 yards of white, 1/2 yard of cream and 1/4 yard of blue.  The dark blue is rather a pretty metallic floral fabric.  As usual you can buy these fabrics at a discount in this week’s special offer.




Completed blocks

Completed blocks

Cutting requirements for the Providence quilt

3.1/2″ squares:  twenty red, eight dark blue, twenty five blue, seventy two white

3.7/8″ squares:  thirty six cream thirty six white

4.1/4″ squares:  four red, three blue, eleven white, eleven dark blue

For the borders you will need to cut five 2.1/2″ strips across the width of fabric in both red and dark blue.

Half square triangles

Half square triangles

Make half square triangle units

Use the 3.7/8″ squares to make half square triangle units.  Place a cream and a white square with right sides together and mark a line along the diagonal.  Sew a 1/4″ seam either side of the marked line and cut along the line.  This will produce two half square triangle units which are now 3.1/2″ squares.  Press the seam allowances towards the white and trim the two corners where the triangle tips stick out.

Put these to one side so that they don’t get muddled with those made in the next stage.

Begin with half square triangles

Begin with half square triangles

Make quarter square triangles

You can make quarter square triangles by making half square triangles twice.  So begin by making half square triangles using 4.1/4″ squares in dark blue/white, blue/white and red/white.  Place one half square triangle right sides together with another half square triangle.  Add them so that the white on the top square is against the coloured fabric on the bottom square, seams following the same diagonal in both of them.

Completed quarter square triangle

Completed quarter square triangle

Mark a line along the diagonal that crosses the original seam line and sew a 1/4″ seam either side of the marked line.  This is shown in the right hand side of the photo.  Cut along the line to produce two quarter square triangles from each pair of half square triangles that you began with.

Having made half square triangles with all the 4.1/4″ squares, you need to turn them into quarter square triangles in these ratios:  eight half square triangles of dark blue with dark blue together in four pairs,  ten half square triangles of blue with dark blue together in five pairs, eight pairs of red with dark blue together in four pairs.  (I hope that’s right – I’ve tried to count them really carefully!).  Each quarter square triangle has at lease one dark blue triangle so that they can form those diamonds around the central squares.

Corner blocks

Corner blocks

Make the first quilt block

Lay the pieces out in five rows of five.   In each corner place a four patch layout of two white squares with two white/cream half square triangles.  Note that the two cream triangles form a butterfly shape across the corner.  In the middle of each edge place either a dark blue or a red square.

Add a red square in the middle.  On the top and the left hand side of this central square lay a quarter square triangle made with two dark blue triangles.  On the bottom and right of the central square lay a quarter square triangle with one dark blue triangle and one red triangle.

Sew the patchwork pieces together across each row and then sew the rows to each other.  The block at this stage measures 15.1/2″ square and you need to make four of them – one for each corner of the quilt.

Central block

Central block

Make the second block

The layout for this block is broadly the same as for the first block.  This time place a blue square in the centre and half way along each edge.  Use dark blue/blue quarter square triangles.  Make sure to place them so that the dark blue triangle always lies on the edge of the central square.  That way you form a dark blue diagonal around each central square.

Sew together as above.  The block measures 15.1/2″ square and you just need to make one for the middle of the quilt.

Third block

Third block

Make the third block

Again, this is very similar to the first two blocks.  Place a blue square in the middle with blue squares on the top and bottom edges of the block.  Add red squares to the two sides.  Use two dark blue/blue quarter square triangles and two dark blue/red quarter square triangles.  Lay these so that the dark blue triangles lie against the central square, the blue triangles are above and below the middle while the two red triangles are on the sides.

Sew together as above.  The block measures 15.1/2″ square and you need to make four of them.

Row one

Row one

Assemble the Providence quilt

Sew the blocks together in three rows of three.  In row one you need a block one at each end with a block three between them.  Make sure that the blue runs vertically in the middle block and that the dark blue forms the top left corner in the first block or the top right in the third block.

In row two place the block two in the middle with a block three on either side of it.  Make sure that in the blocks at either end the blue runs horizontally while the red runs vertically.

Row three

Row three

For row three you need a block three in the middle with a block one at either end.  Make sure that the blue runs vertically in the middle block and that the dark blue forms the two quilt corners in the end blocks.

Providence quilt border

Providence quilt border

Add the quilt borders

For the first border I have used 2.1/2″ strips of red fabric.  You’ll need two lengths of 45.1/2″ for the top and bottom of the quilt, with two lengths of 49.1/2″ for the sides.

I formed the second border with 2.1/2″ strips of dark blue.  You’ll need two lengths of 49.1/2″ for the top and bottom together with two lengths of 53.1/2″ for the sides.

That completes the Providence 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:

https://youtu.be/nDSmOKeWeOk

For those of you who have been asking, my next demonstration on the Sewing Quarter channel will be on September 24th – one at 9 am and one at 11 am.

Wednesbury Museum Art Gallery

Wednesbury Museum Art Gallery

Last week I took time off to visit the Wednesbury Museum and Art Gallery.  It’s not far from here and I had a lovely time there.  To see my photos click here or click on the photo.  I thought that those etchings on the glass would make lovely quilting designs.

Star and Squares Quilt – Free Pattern

Star and squares quilt

Star and squares quilt

The Star and Squares quilt is just as the name describes.  I’ve formed a large star in the middle with a pattern of squares in the corners.  These are shaded so that they form a blue diamond around the star.  I have used nine 15″ finished size blocks and the quilt measures 49″ square.  The quilt required 1 yard each of blue and green with 1.1/4 yards of white fabric.

As usual you can buy these fabrics at a discount in this week’s special offer.  I should add that for the green I have used a green metallic fabric that I think is really pretty.




Completed quilt blocks

Completed quilt blocks

Cutting requirements for the star and squares quilt

8.3/8″ squares:  ten blue, ten green

3.7/8″ squares:  ten blue, ten green

3.1/2″ squares:  sixteen green, sixteen blue, forty eight white

For the binding you will need to cut five 2.1/2″ white strips across the width of fabric.

Half square triangle units

Half square triangle units

Make the half square triangle units

Use both the 8.3/8″ and the 3.7/8″ squares to make half square triangle units.  Place a blue and a green square with right sides together and mark a line along one diagonal.  Sew a 1/4″ seam either side of the marked line and cut along the line.  This produces two half square triangle units which are either 3.1/2″ square or 7.7/8″ square.

Central block

Central block

Make the first block

Use four of the large half square triangles to create the central block.  I have used the simplest method of creating a diamond in a square block.  Place them in two pairs with the blue triangles in the middle.

Sew the squares together in pairs and then sew the pairs to each other.  The block now measures 15.1/2″ square and you need to make just one.

Second block

Second block

Make the second block

For the second block I have used the same four large half square triangles but arranged them differently.  This time the blue triangles form larger blue triangles pointing towards the middle while the green triangles also form larger green triangles, also pointing towards the middle.  As before, sew the squares together in pairs and then sew the pairs to each other.  This block also measures 15.1/2″ square and you need to make four of them.

Corner block layout

Corner block layout

Make the squares block

For the corner blocks I have used a simple design of alternating squares, but I have shaded them so that the block is shaded blue in one half and shaded green in the other half.  The diagonal itself uses blue/green half square triangles.

The block consists of five rows of five squares.  I would recommend placing the half square triangles along the diagonal first and then adding blue and white to one side of the diagonal with green and white on the other side of the diagonal.  Sew the squares together across each row and then sew the rows to each other to complete the block.

At this stage the block measures 15.1/2″ square and you need to make four of them.

Row one

Row one

Assemble the star and squares quilt

Sew the blocks together in three rows of three.  For row one place a squares block at each end with the blue section nearest the middle and the green section forming the top corners of the quilt.  In the middle place one of the second blocks, laying it so that the blue triangles are vertical and the green triangles are horizontal.

Row two

Row two

In row two you need the diamond in a square block in the middle with a triangles block at each end.  Lay these so that the blue triangles are horizontal and the green triangles are vertical.

Row three

Row three

Row three is similar to row one, but the corner blocks are placed slightly differently.  The green triangles still form the quilt corners and the blue triangles still point towards the middle, but the diagonals move inwards now to complete the overall diamond in the background of the star – that was my intention anyway!

Sew the blocks together across each row and then sew the rows to each other.

White quilt border

White quilt border

Add the quilt border

Use 2.1/2″ strips of white fabric for the border.  You’ll need two lengths of 45.1/2″ for the top and bottom, with two lengths of 49.1/2″ for the sides.

That completes the star and squares 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:

https://youtu.be/F68OKWVAJnI

Shugborough Hall

Shugborough Hall

When travelling north on the motorway I have often seen signs for Shugborough Hall.  Last time I went to Fabric Freedom I made a detour so that I could visit it.  To see my photos click here or click on the photo.

This week has been busy even by my standards.  I have been making a very large quilt for my appearance on the Sewing Quarter this morning.  It’s a gorgeous quilt, but it certainly took some time.  Then Fabric Freedom asked me to make some sample quilts for them, so I have been very busy.  After my two craft stalls this weekend I think I will need a day of quiet reading to recover!

Shugborough Hall – UK – Photos

Shugvorough Hall

Shugborough Hall

I’ve passed signs for Shugborough Hall many times when I drive up to Bradford to buy fabric.  Recently I allowed myself enough time to detour and have a look at it.  It was well worth the effort!  Unfortunately the hall itself wasn’t open when I was there, but the grounds are magnificent.  I certainly chose the right day to visit.  There are many mature trees throughout the grounds so you can’t see the full width and splendour of the hall until you are quite close.  However I found a photo of Shugborough Hall without the trees on the National Trust website.




Clock tower

Clock tower

History of Shugborough Hall

The Anson family bought the estate in 1624 and had lived there ever since until the death of the fourth Earl of Lichfield in 1960 when it was given to the National Trust.  I’m sure there were many illustrious members of the family, but the most recent and the one  that we all know is Patrick Lichfield, the society photographer.  He lived in one tower and his rooms are still as they were then – no photos allowed but I can assure you that they are fascinating, with many examples of his work dotted around.

Look at those reflections

Look at those reflections

The grounds

There is a lovely walk from the car park to the hall, giving a taste of what’s to come.  The water in the lakes was very still, giving rise to some wonderful reflections.

Swans looking to us for food

Swans looking to us for food

This family of swans was just one of many birds – loads of ducks and geese – but for me they were definitely a star attraction.

Cattle grazing

Cattle grazing

The grounds are used as a working farm and these cows amused me with their strict line formation.  Every time one of them stepped forward the rest would do the same.  Very efficient!

Entrance stairway

Entrance stairway

The hall

What a grand entrance.  These steps led up to a lovely courtyard area which was surprisingly ornate.

Guarding the entrance

Guarding the entrance

First you passed under the gaze of these magnificent statues.

Decorated ceiling

Decorated ceiling

At the top of the stairs the covered area had a lovely ceiling.  This surprised me as it it is open to the elements.  I’m used to seeing these ornate ceilings inside stately homes, but never on somewhere exposed to the elements.

Shugborough Hall

Shugborough Hall

Shugborough Hall is wonderful and I am so pleased that I finally took the chance to visit it.  My only regret is that I can’t show you any photos of the inside of the hall – but glad to have an excuse to visit it again.

The grounds are extensive and well worth a visit in their own right.

Summer Garden Quilt Pattern

Summer Garden quilt

Summer Garden quilt

The Summer Garden quilt is based very loosely on Clara Stone’s Dutch Rose quilt block.  I’ve added in plenty of different colours to give it a summer garden feel.  I have used two 24″ blocks finished size, making a rectangular quilt 34″ by 58″.  That could be a throw or a single bed quilt.  In fact, now that I look at the name, it could also be a quilt to use in the garden.

Of course if you wanted to make it bigger you could just keep adding blocks.  The quilt needed 1/2 yard each of white, lilac, green and pink, together with 3/4 yard each of blue and purple.  As usual you can buy these fabrics at a discount in this week’s special offer.




Completed quilt block

Completed quilt block

Cutting requirements for the summer garden quilt

3.1/2″ squares:  eight white, eight purple, sixteen blue, eight lilac, eight pink

3.7/8″ squares:  six each in white and lilac, six each in white and pink, two each in green and lilac, six each in green and purple

For the borders you will need to cut four 2.1/2″ purple strips, four 1.1/2″ green strips and five 2.1/2″ blue strips, all across the width of fabric.

Half square triangle units

Half square triangle units

Make half square triangles

Use the 3.7/8″ squares to make half square triangle units in the colour combinations listed above.  Place two squares with right sides together and mark a line along one diagonal.  Sew a 1/4″ seam either side of the marked line and cut along the line.  This produces two half square triangle units which are now 3.1/2″ squares.  Press the seam allowances towards the darker fabric and trim the two corners where fabric sticks out.

Purple quarter

Purple quarter

Make the lilac quarter

This block can best be made in quarters.  Each quarter is just four rows of four squares.  Down one diagonal place a white square followed by two blues and a purple square.  Down the other diagonal place a lilac/white half square triangle in each corner with two lilac squares between them.  In the remaining spaces on the top and the left place two lilac/white half square triangles, with the lilac squares together forming a larger lilac triangle pointing away from the middle.  In the spaces on the bottom and the right place green/purple and a green/lilac half square triangles, with the green triangles together forming a larger green triangle pointing towards the middle.

Sew the squares together across each row and then sew the rows to each other.  This block measures 12.1/2″ square and you need to make four of them.

Pink quarter

Pink quarter

Make the pink quarter

For this quarter my intention was to replace the lilac squares with pink and leave everything else the same.  However if you look closely you’ll see that I haven’t quite done that – there are two purple/green half square triangles which should have been pink/green.  By the time I realised this it was far too late to unpick and start again, so I have left them in and adjusted the cutting requirements to match the layout in the photos.

Look for the larger shapes to check that you have your triangles placed correctly.  There is a large white triangle across the corner, the green triangles are always placed together to form larger green triangles pointing inwards, while on two of the edges the pink triangles lie together to form larger pink triangles pointing out.

Sew the squares together across each row and then sew the rows to each other.  This quarter also measures 12.1/2″ square and you need to make four of them.

Keep the purple squares in the centre

Keep the purple squares in the centre

Complete the summer garden quilt block

Use two lilac and two pink quarters to make one block, placing the lilac quarters diagonally opposite each other.  Rotate the quarters so that the purple square is always in the middle of the block.

Sew the quarters together in pairs and then sew the pairs together.  The block measures 24.1/2″ square at this stage and you need to make two of them.

Add the purple border

Add the purple border

Assemble the quilt and borders

Sew the blocks to each other.  For the first border I have used 2.1/2″ strips of purple fabric.  You’ll need two lengths of 24.1/2″ for the top and bottom with two lengths of 52.1/2″ for the sides.

Green and blue borders

Green and blue borders

I’ve used 1.1/2″ strips of green for the second border:  two lengths of 28.1/2″ for the top and bottom with two lengths of 54.1/2″ for the sides.

Finally for the third border use 2.1/2″ strips of blue fabric:  two lengths of 30.1/2″ for the top and bottom with two lengths of 58.1/2″ for the sides.

That completes the Summer Garden 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/T4ramWbOX_g

My favourite show quilt

My favourite show quilt

Last time I wrote I promised you my photos of the lovely quilts at the Festival of Quilts.  You can seem them here or click on the photo.

This morning I am demonstrating on the Sewing Quarter TV channel – wish me luck!  I’m back there in two weeks’ time on August 30th.  Then tomorrow I have a stall at the craft fair in Malvern.  No doubt on Sunday I will collapse in a heap and rest.

Festival of Quilts 2019

My favourite show quilt

My favourite show quilt

The Festival of Quilts 2019 seemed even bigger and better than usual.  What an exhausting day – but what a treat it was!  There were more quilts than ever and more traders than ever.  This particular quilt was high on my list of fabulous quilts.  It looks like Hawaiian style applique, but I don’t know how she made the colour variation.  Lovely!

You can see lots more about the Festival of Quilts on this link.

All those triangles!

All those triangles!

Usually I try to dash around the quilts first to get photos before it becomes too crowded.  Then I can go back slowly and just enjoy the quilts.  However that didn’t work on this quilt – I couldn’t get a photo of the full quilt, but isn’t it beautiful.

Clever quilts

Delicate and eyecatching

Delicate and eyecatching

I loved the delicacy of this quilt.  It’s a wedding ring style quilt with white and purple triangles around each oval.  Beautiful fabrics.

Clever tumbling blocks

Clever tumbling blocks

Does this count as tumbling blocks?  We all love tumbling blocks and this one was a particularly clever version.  Not only the design itself, but the colour placement – just everything about it!

I can only gasp in awe at the thought of the technical aspects of making this quilt.

Stunning quilt

Stunning quilt

Sometimes it’s the sheer exuberance of a quilt that amazes me.  Another one that I can only dream about making – all those gorgeous colours so beautifully placed.  A really stunning quilt.

Optical illusion quilt

Optical illusion quilt

This quilt was amazing.  I didn’t realise quite how clever it was until another visitor pointed it out to me.  Behind the screen the animal changes depending on whether you are looking from the left, the centre or the right.  I wish I knew how to make such a clever quilt.

Baltimore Album quilts

Baltimore Album quilt

Baltimore Album quilt

Apart from the main exhibition there are always separate quilt galleries scattered throughout the area.  One of these this year was of Baltimore Album quilts.  They were all beautiful, but this particular one struck me because of the diagonal setting – very pretty.

I have only been able to bring you a small selection of the many beautiful quilts on show at the Festival of Quilts 2019 but I hope it’s given you a flavour of this wonderful show.

Diamonds in Rings Quilt Pattern

Diamonds in Rings quilt

Diamonds in Rings quilt

For the Diamonds in Rings quilt I have used jewel colours to create a four patch diamond in the middle of rings of blue.  The design may look quite complex, but it is really quite easy to make.

To make the quilt I used 1/2 yard of purple, 3/4 yard each of light blue and of green, together with 1.1/4 yards each of dark blue and white.  As usual you can buy these fabrics at a discount in this week’s special offer.

The quilt measures 57″ square, using nine blocks which are nearly 18″ square.

In order to celebrate ten years since I launched Ludlow Quilt and Sew I am holding a 20% off sale – full details at the bottom of the page.




Completed quilt block

Completed quilt block

Cutting requirements for the Diamonds in Rings quilt

3.1/2″ squares:  seventy two white

3.7/8″ squares:  thirty six dark blue, thirty six white, nine purple, nine green

4.5/8″ squares:  thirty six dark blue, thirty six light blue, nine purple

For the border you will need to cut six 2.1/2″ strips of green across the width of fabric.

Nine patch unit

Nine patch unit

Make the nine patch unit

Begin with the nine patch unit forming the middle of each block.  Use the 4.5/8″ squares to create two rows of dark blue, light blue, dark blue and one row of light blue, purple, light blue.

You could use individual squares here or sew strips together along the length and then cut them at 4.5/8″ intervals.  Sew the rows to each other to form the nine patch unit.  Make nine of these.

Add the edges to the blocks

I have added a large patchwork triangle to each side of the nine patch unit.  This turns the unit so that the squares appear to be formed along the diagonal lines.

Make half square triangle units

Make half square triangle units

For these sections I needed to use half square triangles.  Make these using the 3.7/8″ squares of green and purple with white.  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 and cut along the line.  This produces two half square triangle units which are now 3.1/2″ squares.  Press the seam allowances away from the white and trim the two corners where fabrics stick out.

You will still have 3.7/8″ squares in white and dark blue – these are cut in half along the diagonal and used as separate triangles.

Purple triangle sections

Purple triangle sections

Form half of the large triangles using a purple half square triangle in the corner.  Next to it lay a white square and a dark blue triangle.

In the row beneath this, use a white square and a white triangle.  For the third row you just need a dark blue triangle.  Sew the pieces together across each row and then sew the rows to each other.  Make eighteen of these.

Green triangles

Green triangles

Now make similar triangles but with a green half square triangle in the top left hand corner.  The remaining pieces are exactly the same as for the purple triangle above.  Make eighteen of these green triangles.

Add a triangle to each edge

Add a triangle to each edge

Assemble the blocks

Add one large triangle to each edge of the nine patch units.  Place them so that you have two purple triangles opposite each other and two green triangles opposite each other.  In the photo I have placed green triangles at the top and bottom with purple triangles on the sides.

Sew the triangles two at a time

Sew the triangles two at a time

Join these triangles to the nine patch units two at a time.  Sew the triangles to the top and bottom of the nine patch unit, press them open and then sew the remaining two triangles to the sides.

The triangles are slightly longer than the nine patch edges – this is by design.  When sewing a triangle to the central unit it should stick out about 1/4″ at each end.  This will give you a straight edge to the finished block.

At this stage the blocks measure just under 18″ square.  Make nine of them.

Three rows of three

Three rows of three

Assemble the Diamonds in Rings quilt

Sew the blocks together in three rows of three.  Make sure that the purple corners are always top left and bottom right of the blocks.  Otherwise you won’t get that pretty four patch unit formed where the blocks join together.

Sew the blocks together across each row and then sew the rows to each other.

Green quilt border

Green quilt border

Add the border

I have used 2.1/2″ strips of green for the border.  You will need two lengths of about 53″ for the top and bottom and two lengths of about 57″ for the sides.  You’ll need to measure your own quilt to be sure of the lengths as they may vary a little from mine.

That completes the Diamonds in Rings 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:

https://youtu.be/Ab-3YJEzefg

As I mentioned above, it is now ten years since I started this business.  It has been a wonderful decade and I have met many lovely quilters from all round the world.  In order to celebrate this, I am offering a discount of 20% on all orders over £6 from today till next Thursday.  Take a look at https://shop.ludlowquiltandsew.co.uk/.  The discount will be taken off automatically at the checkout section.

By the time you read this I will be at the NEC for the wonderful Festival of Quilts.  I hope to be able to bring you photos of lots of lovely quilts next time I write.

Railfence Star Quilt Pattern

Railfence star quilt

Railfence star quilt

I have designed my railfence star quilt pattern with two colourways for the railfences and a few stars to give it some pop.  It is a very simple pattern to make, but very striking.  The quilt measures 56″ square, using 1.1/4 yards of yellow, 1/2 yard of white, 1 yard of one of the blues, 1/2 yard of another blue and 1/4 yard of everything else – that’s four purples and two more blue fabrics.

The fabrics are chosen to run from dark to light in blue and again in purple.  I have used sixty four blocks, all 6″ square finished size.  As usual you can buy these fabrics at a discount in this week’s special offer.




Completed quilt blocks

Completed quilt blocks

Cutting requirements for the railfence star quilt

Five 1.1/2″ strips cut across the width of fabric in four purples and four blues

Ten 1.1/2″ strips cut across the width of fabric in yellow and in white

2.1/2″ squares:  six yellow twenty four blue

2.7/8″ squares:  twelve yellow, twelve blue

For the borders you will need to cut five 2.1/2″ strips of yellow and six 2.1/2″ strips of blue across the width of fabric.

Make panels in blue and in purple

Make panels in blue and in purple

Make the railfence quilt blocks

Sew the 1.1/2″ strips of four blues with yellow and white along the length to make one panel.  Repeat with the four purples, yellow and white.  Place the strips so that they run from dark to light.  This makes a 6.1/2″ panel in each range of colours.  You need to make five of each panel.

Cut these panels at 6.1/2″ intervals to make 6.1/2″ squares.  You need to make twenty nine of these in blue and twenty nine in purple.

Make half square triangles

Make half square triangles

Make the star blocks

For the stars I have used the third lightest blue, but you could use any blue that you prefer.

Use the 2.7/8″ squares to make half square triangles.  Place a blue and a yellow square 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 triangle units.

These are now 2.1/2″ squares.  Press the seam allowances towards the blue and trim the two corners where fabric sticks out.  You need twenty four of these.

Star quilt block layout

Star quilt block layout

Lay the squares out in three rows of three.  Place a 2.1/2″ yellow square in the middle with a blue square in each corner.  Add half square triangles in the remaining spaces.  Check the photo to see which way to place the traingles.

Sew the patchwork pieces together across each row and then sew the rows to each other.

Each star block measures 6.1/2″ square and you need to make six of them.

Rows 1-3

Rows 1-3

Assemble the railfence star quilt

Sew the blocks together in eight rows of eight blocks.  In row one place a star at each end.  Between them lay a purple block across, purple block down, blue block down, two purple blocks across and one purple block down.

For row two you need two blue blocks across, one purple down, two blues across, one blue down, one purple down and one blue across.  In row three place a purple down, blue down, two purples across, one purple down, one blue down and two purples across.

Rows 4-6

Rows 4-6

For row four you will need a purple down, two blues across, two stars, two blues across and one blue down.

In row five place two purples across, one purple down, one blue down, two purples across, one purple down and one blue down.

For row six place a blue across, blue down, purple down, two blues across, one blue down, one purple down and one blue across.

Rows 7-8

Rows 7-8

Make row seven witha purple across, blue down, two purples across, one purple down, one blue down and two purples across.

Finally for row eight place a star at each end.  Between them add two blues across, one blue down, one purple down, two blues across.

Sew the blocks together across each row and then sew the rows to each other.

Add two borders

Add two borders

Add the railfence star quilt borders

In border one I have used 2.1/2″ strips of yellow fabric.  You’ll need two lengths of 48.1/2″ for the top and bottom with two lengths of 52.1/2″ for the sides.

For the second border I have used the second lightest blue fabric in 2.1/2″ strips.  You’ll need two lengths of 52.1/2″ for the top and bottom with two lengths of 56.1/2″ for the sides.

That completes the railfence star 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/GKdO5X03ecg

Ben Venom's quilts

Ben Venom’s quilts

Last time I wrote I was off to a craft fair the next day.  As a totally unexpected treat there was a quilt exhibition upstairs in the MAC building.  It featured Ben Venom’s quilts in an exhibition called All This Mayhem.  Ben is a renowned San Francisco artist.

I am delighted to see that this exhibition will be at the Festival of Quilts next month.  Well worth seeing if you are there.

All this mayhem

All this mayhem

Birmingham is known as the home of Heavy Metal music and Ben’s quilts are heavy metal music meets quilting.  Absolutely delightful.  He had used a sort of crazy quilting/applique technique and the detail was amazing.

Blue Bargello Quilt Pattern

Blue bargello quilt

Blue bargello quilt

I’m thrilled with the way this blue bargello quilt has turned out.  I’ve used patches of differing sizes to create the feeling of movement.  The squares and rectangles are 4″, 3″, 2″ or 1″.  However the method of making the quilt differs from the more traditional bargello where you create loops of patches and break into them to create the design.  Instead I have used strip piecing to create panels which use all the different sizes of patches.  An incredibly easy quilt to make, using sixteen 10″ square blocks.

The quilt measures 56″ square and it takes 1/2 yard each of three different blues with 1.1/2 yards of white fabric.  As usual you can buy these fabrics at a discount in this week’s special offer.




Completed quilt block

Completed quilt block

Cutting requirements for the blue bargello quilt

Dark blue:  two strips 4.1/2″ wide, one strip 3.1/2″ wide, one strip 2.1/2″ wide and two strips 1.1/2″ wide

Medium blue:  two strips 4.1/2″ wide, two strips 3.1/2″ wide, one strip 2.1/2″ wide, one strip 1.1/2″ wide

Light blue:  one strip 4.1/2″ wide, two strips 3.1/2″ wide, two strips 2.1/2″ wide, one strip 1.1/2″ wide

White:  one strip 4.1/2″ wide, one strip 3.1/2″ wide, two strips 2.1/2″ wide, two strips 1.1/2″ wide.

First strip panel

First strip panel

Make the strip panels

Sew together two panels, each one with one 4.1/2″ strip of dark blue, one 3.1/2″ strip of medium blue, one 2.1/2″ strip of light blue and one 1.1/2″ strip of white.  Cut these panels at 4.1/2″ intervals to make rectangles 4.1/2″ by 10.1/2″.  You need sixteen of these rectangles.

Cut only the sixteen that you need so that you can use the remainder of the panel for the second border.  The same applies to all the panels.

Second strip panel

Second strip panel

For the second strip panel sew together two panels, each one with a 4.1/2″ strip of medium blue, 3.1/2″ strip of light blue, 2.1/2″ strip of white and 1.1/2″ strip of white fabric.  Cut these panels at 3.1/2″ intervals and make sixteen of these rectangles.

Third panel

Third panel

Make the third panel with a 4.1/2″ strip of light blue, 3.1/2″ strip of white, 2.1/2″ strip of dark blue and a 1.1/2″ strip of medium blue.  You only need one of this panel.  Cut it at 2.1/2″ intervals to make sixteen rectangles.

Fourth panel

Fourth panel

Finally for the fourth panel sew together a 4.1/2″ strip of 4.1/2″ white, 3.1/2″ strip of dark blue, 2.1/2″ strip of medium blue, 1.1/2″ strip of light blue.  You need just one of this panel.  Cut it at 1.1/2″ intervals to make sixteen rectangles.

Press the seam allowances in opposite directions

Press the seam allowances in opposite directions

When you press the strip panels, press the seam allowances in one direction for the 4.1/2″ and 2.1/2″ strips.  Press them in the opposite direction for the 3.1/2″ and 1.1/2″ strips.  That way your seams will nest together when you sew the rectangles together.  The photo shows the back view of the block.

Quilt block layout

Quilt block layout

Make the blue bargello quilt block

Take one rectangle from each of the four panels.  Lay them out as shown in decreasing order with the 4.1/2″ strip of the left and the 1.1/2″ strip on the right.  Sew the strips together to complete the block – really simple, isn’t it!

The block measures 10.1/2″ square at this stage and you need to make sixteen of them.

Rows one and two

Rows one and two

Assemble the blue bargello quilt

Sew the blocks together in four rows of four.  In order to construct the design you need to rotate the blocks.  Use the 4.1/2″ dark blue square as your reference.  In row one this square is placed bottom right, bottom right, bottom left and bottom left.

For the second row place the dark blue square top right, bottom right, bottom left and top left.  You can see where the two dark blue squares together form rectangles as a guide, and the white patches are forming the top half of circles.

Rows three and four

Rows three and four

For row three place the dark blue square bottom right, top right, top left and bottom left.

In row four you need to place the dark blue square top right, top right, top left and top left.  You still have several dark blue rectangles forming and the white patches are now forming the lower half of circles.

Sew the blocks together across each row and then sew the rows to each other.

First border

First border

Add the borders

For the first border I used 3.1/2″ strips of white fabric. This was to help the design of the quilt to stand out.  You’ll need two lengths of 40.1/2″ for the top and bottom with two lengths of 46.1/2″ for the sides.

Use the remaining strip sets

Use the remaining strip sets

For the second border I wanted to use up the remaining sections of the strip panels.  I cut all the remaining pieces into 2.1/2″ widths.  Luckily I ended up with twenty of these rectangles which was just what I needed.  I sewed them together in four rows of five strips, giving me four 50.1/2″ lengths.

Second border

Second border

For the border I needed two lengths of 46.1/2″ and two lengths of 50.1/2″, so I could trim two of the lengths for the top and bottom and use the full lengths for the sides.

If you don’t manage to cut twenty 2.1/2″ strips from your leftovers you can always just add some extra 2.1/2″ sections of one of the blues.

Third border

Third border

Third and final border

For the final border I used 3.1/2″ strips of white again.  You’ll need two lengths of 50.1/2″ for the top and bottom with two lengths of 56.1/2″ for the sides.

That completes the blue bargello 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/xOeQ6hhWdOM

Birmingham Peace Garden

Birmingham Peace Garden

Last week I visited somewhere that I’ve wanted to see for a long time.  I’ve seen it from the bus on my way into town but never actually got round to stopping off to see it.  It’s the St Thomas Peace Garden and to see my photos click here or click on the photo.

Busy, busy weekend coming up – I’m off to London to see the family tomorrow, then on Sunday I have a craft stall in Cannon Hill Park and on Monday it’s back to London to go to Wimbledon with my daughter.  We have tickets for Number One Court which is very exciting.

Birmingham Peace Garden – UK – Photos

Birmingham Peace Garden

Birmingham Peace Garden

I’ve seen the Birmingham Peace Garden from the bus on my way into town many times.  Last week I finally stopped off to have a look around it – and I’m so pleased that I did.  I had a wonderful feeling of peace as I walked around, even though I was so close to the city centre.

St Thomas church

St Thomas church

History of the Peace Garden

St Thomas’s Church was originally built in 1818 as a Waterloo Church – something that I had never heard of before.  Apparently these churches were built to celebrate peace after the Battle of Waterloo.  In this Wikipedia article you can see the original church.  It was bombed during the war and only some parts of it remain.




The garden was created on the site of the church to celebrate the Queen’s coronation, but it didn’t become a Peace Garden until 1995, fifty years after the end of the war.

Peace garden entrance

Peace garden entrance

The gardens now

The garden as it stands now is a wonderful tribute to those killed during the bombing of Birmingham.  The fence around the garden has many images of doves flying in the metalwork.  These gates lie at the entrance to the garden.

Trees planted in 1998

Trees planted in 1998

In 1998 the G8 summit was held in Birmingham and each national leader planted a tree chosen to be relevant to that country.  These are now mature trees and they contribute to the overall feeling of peace within the garden.

School field across the road

School field across the road

There’s a school playing field across the road and this contributes to the feeling of space – well it does when there are no children playing on it anyway!

May peace prevail

May peace prevail

The wording at the centre of this mosaic reads May Peace Prevail on Earth.  I think that’s a sentiment that we would all echo.

I’m so glad that I have finally stopped off at the Peace Garden and found out so much about it.

Floor Tile Lap Quilt Pattern

Floor tile quilt

Floor tile quilt

This floor tile lap quilt design is based loosely on some floor tiles that I saw in the V&A museum – that place is a treasure trove of design ideas!  I have added some more colour to the blocks.  For the central area I added a design that is more usual around the edges of tile designs.  In the original floor tiles you can see that they have used plain squares for the alternate while I have repeated the nine patch block, but with different colours.

Floor tile design

Floor tile design

The quilt measures 38″ square, using 1/2 yard each of cream and light purple, 3/4 yard of purple and 1/4 yard of brown fabric.  I have used nine 10″ square finished size blocks with two borders.

As ever, you can buy these fabrics at a discount in this week’s special offer.




Completed quilt blocks

Completed quilt blocks

Cutting requirements for the floor tile quilt

2.1/2″ squares:  twenty brown, twenty light purple, sixteen cream, sixteen purple

6.1/2″ by 2.1/2″ strips:  eight cream, eight purple

10.1/2″ by 2.1/2″ strips:  eight cream, eight purple

1.1/2″ by 5.1/2″ strips:  eight cream, four light purple, four purple, four brown

For the borders you will need to cut four 2.1/2″ strips of light purple and of purple, all across the width of fabric.

Using strip piecing

Using strip piecing

Make the first block

I have used strip piecing, but this is perhaps a bit wasteful of fabric unless you want more of the blocks for another project, as I did.  You may prefer just to cut individual squares and sew them together.  However if you are using strip piecing, sew together 2.1/2″ strips along the length.  You need to make panels in dark, light, dark and in light, dark, light.  Cut these panels at 2.1/2″ intervals.  This produces rectangles 2.1/2″ by 6.1/2″ made up of three squares.

Make the nine patch block

Make the nine patch block

Place a dark, light, dark strip at top and bottom with a light, dark, light strip between them.  Sew these strips to each other.  This creates a simple nine patch block.

Add a cream frame

Add a cream frame

Now add a 2.1/2″ frame around the nine patch block.  Add 6.1/2″ strips of cream to the top and bottom with two 10.1/2″ strips down the sides.

That completes the first quilt block.  It measures 10.1/2″ square at the moment and you need to make four of them.

Second quilt block layout

Second quilt block layout

Make the second quilt block

The second block is the same basic design as the first block.  This time I have switched the colours, using purple and light purple.  I have placed the dark fabric (purple) where in the first block I had placed light fabric (cream).  This was to add a bigger contrast between the blocks.

This block also measures 10.1/2″ square at this stage and you need to make four of them.

Use strip piecing again

Use strip piecing again

Make the central block

In the middle of the quilt I have used a railfence/piano keys type of block.  Again I used strip piecing, sewing together 1.1/2″ strips of cream, light purple, brown, cream and purple.  Cut this panel at 5.1/2″ intervals to create squares.

Sew together four squares

Sew together four squares

Sew four of these squares together, laying them so that the stripes are alternately vertical and horizontal.  I have chosen to place them so that the cream stripe is on the outside in each square.

The block measures 10.1/2″ square and you need to make one only.

Sew the rows together

Sew the rows together

Assemble the floor tile lap quilt

Sew the blocks together in three rows of three.  In rows one and three use a brown block at each end with a purple block between them.  For row three place a purple block at each end with the stripey block between them.  Sew the blocks together across each row and then sew the rows to each other.

Add the quilt borders

Add the quilt borders

Add the quilt borders

For the first border I have used 2.1/2″ strips of light purple fabric.  You will need two lengths of 30.1/2″ for the top and bottom with two lengths of 34.1/2″ for the sides.  In the second border I have used 2.1/2″ strips of dark purple – two lengths of 34.1/2″ for the top and bottom with two lengths of 38.1/2″ for the sides.

That completes the floor tile lap 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:

https://youtu.be/vw4NQua5vm8

Bradford by night

Bradford by night

Last time I visited Bradford to buy fabric I decided to visit the city itself rather than just the fabric warehouse.  What a lovely surprise it was – a lovely city.  To see my photos click on Bradford City or on the photo.

Edgbaston cricket ground

Edgbaston cricket ground

My daughter was clever enough to get tickets for one of the World Cup cricket matches held here in Birmingham and on Wednesday we watched the New Zealand/South Africa match at Edgbaston.  What an exciting match it was, with the result hanging in the balance right up to the last over.  Definitely a day to remember!