Thursday, October 6, 2011

Stash Busting Project #1

Lately, I've really felt that it would be a good idea to use up some stash. Like most quilters, I sometimes feel like my personal stash is just a little bigger than it should be. And now the store's building up it's own stash.

Please join me in any or all of these projects and share your stash busting ideas with us! This first project is a semi-unplanned quilt. I'm going to make some blocks to get it started and then decide on size and border(s) later. I do know that I want it to be a baby size quilt. I don't have a big stash of 1/2 or 1 yard pieces, nor do I have fat quarter bundles of entire lines. Mine are mostly odd size cuts and little chunks of fabrics.

I also know I want to use purples and greens. And I'll set them in white soft yellow. I'm going to make pinwheels - they make such cute baby quilts. Pinwheels and 9-patches; I really like 2-block quilts.

Yay! I have a direction. First, I'll make a couple of test blocks. I made them 6-1/2 inches, so they'll be 6" finished. And I'll make the main part of the quilt 5 squares across and 5 down, which means I need 25 blocks - 13 pinwheels and 12 nine patches.

For the pinwheel blocks, cut:
13 pairs of assorted purple blocks 3-7/8" X 3-7/8"
26 yellow blocks 3-7/8" X 3-7/8"

For the nine patch blocks, cut:
from each of 12 greens: (2) 2-1/2" X 5" and (1) 2-1/2" X 2-1/2"
from the yellow: (12) 2-1/2" X 5" and (24) 2-1/2" X 2-1/2"

**Tip: when I cut small pieces like these blocks, I cut at an angle on my cutting board, so I'm not always cutting straight up and down in the same places. **

To make the pinwheels, draw a pencil line diagonally on the back of each square of yellow fabric.

Place a purple and yellow square right sides together and stitch 1/4" away from the pencil line on both sides of the line.

(Those last 2 photos are the same yellow fabric!! Stupid fluorescent lights!)

Stitch all the purple and yellow 3-7/8" squares. Cut on the pencil lines.

Press toward the purple fabric. There will be 4 half square triangle blocks of each print. Lay the 4 out in a pinwheel form, watch the layout to make sure all the pinwheels are going the same direction like these 2 shown below:

Not like these 2 below (the one on the right is going backwards):

Stitch the top two blocks together, and then the bottom two; press toward the purple.

Sew the top to the bottom, interlocking the center seams.

 **Tip: I like to continue pressing toward the purple after the last seam is sewn, which means I have to split that final seam. To do that, I grip the seam with both hands and give it a gentle tug to pop the top couple of stitches from the previous seams. Then you can press half of the seam each direction (toward the purple). Hopefully, the pictures make that a little clearer!**

This tip also helps reduce some of the bulk in the very center of the pinwheel, so it lies a little flatter.

Tomorrow, I'll do the nine patch blocks and finish the quilt.


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  2. Great tutorial! My stash is such a mess right now. Everything is sorted by color (even my scraps) but I don't have anything from any "line" really. I just buy cuts of fabric that I like and tell myself I will figure out what to do with it later :)

  3. Love the tutorial! What a great idea for de-cluttering. Love baby quilts! :)

  4. What a cute quilt and SO simple. I LOVE those colors, especially the purples you've used. I must get more purples since it's my favorite color and yet I have none at all; can you believe that? WHY does anyone not have their absolute favorite color in their fabric stash? LOL

    PS ~ I came over from Sew Bittersweet to say hi. I just got sidetracked by that adorable and super easy quilt project first. LOL Thank you for such an easy quilt tutorial. I think even *I* can do that one.

  5. Great way to use up some stash! I am a new follower coming from Sew Bittersweet.

  6. Purples and greens is one of my favorite combos! Love it!
    Visiting from Sew Bittersweet Designs, although I already follow you on FB!

  7. I love the combination of purples and greens. It looks fresh & pretty. I am a new quilter and wouldn't have thought of making a 2 block quilt, but definitely want to try it because 9-patches and pinwheels are simple & sweet. I'm following your blog now, and stopped by to say hello after being sent here from Sew Bitter Sweet.