Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Mitered X lap quilt: a tutorial

When I started this blog, I was a little worried about creating my own patterns. So many of my favorite bloggers create their own patterns and I just didn't know if I could do it. But one day, the idea for this quilt just popped in my head. I was so excited, I quickly figured out the math and set about working on it. It took a few tries to get the method down for the center section (you can see that one of the blocks used different blocks), and I had a whole new appreciation for pattern writers! Once I got it down, though, the blocks went together so fast. They are big blocks--16 inches finished. And that means a fast quilt. Yay!

I opted to use just fabrics from my stash, and luckily, it worked out. Some aren't what I would have chosen had I not been making a stash-busting quilt, but I didn't want to buy any fabric for the top for this. I was saving up for a Bernina. :-)

For each block, you will need the following:

green: 2 - 4-1/2" x 8-1/2" and 1 - 7" square (alternatively, if you'd like extra wiggle room, cut 7-3/4 inch squares)
blue: 2 - 4-1/2" x 8-1/2" and 1 - 7" square (see alternate note above)
pink: 4 - 7-1/2 x 3-1/2
cream: 8 - 2-1/4 x 3-3/4

Each of the above needs to be out of the same fabric, but different blocks can use different prints. In other words, the 3 green pieces above all need to be from the same print. You could use different prints for the cream if you really wanted, but I didn't and think it helps unify the block to use the same print.

Print the attached paper piecing PDF twice per block (for a 12 block quilt, you will 24 copies). Make sure the squares measure 4 1/2".

Step one: make your HSTs (half-square triangles). Sew the green and blue squares together around the outside of the block using a scant quarter inch seam allowance.

Cut the blocks from corner to corner to yield 4 HST blocks.

Press all the blocks to the same color (just pick: blue or green, it doesn't matter, as long as you're consistent) and trim to 4-1/2 squares. You won't trim much; if you'd like a little wiggle room, use larger squares. Set aside.

Step two: Using the paper piecing templates, paper piece the x block quarters. (See my tutorial for paper piecing here) Prepare your templates by cutting them out, leaving 3/8" around the outside edge, and fold the templates to mark the seam allowances. Use a little glue to attach the pink rectangle to the center of the template on the wrong side, making sure it overlaps all the seam allowance. Trim the pink to the seam allowance and line up one cream rectangle to one side. Sew along the printed line, press, and repeat with the other side. Repeat with all the templates, making sure to keep your fabrics organized so that you end up with 4 blocks with the same fabric combinations. Trim your blocks along the outside printed line before removing the paper template.

Step three: Sew the paper-pieced x block quarters into pairs, pinning well. Press so that the blocks will nest together. Sew the pairs together and press, popping your center seam. Set aside.

Step four: Attach the HSTs to the matching blue pieces so that the HSTs both point toward the center with the blue sides matching up. Matching up these blocks is what will give your blocks the mitered look, so make sure you are careful here. Press toward the blue rectangle.

Step five: Attach the green pieces to the x blocks. Press toward the green rectangle.

Step six: Attach the blue strips to the x blocks, pinning well. Because you will be matching biased edges with unbiased edges, there can be shifting if you aren't careful. Press toward the blue strips.

Step seven: Arrange your blocks how you like, making sure to alternate the orientation so that the green strips border the blue strips. Piece together, and you're done!

I had Abby Latimer quilt it with the city windows panto, and I had her back it with pink minky. I bound it with one of the cream fabrics I used in some of the blocks. I really love how it turned out, even though I could have used just a little larger. It finishes at 48 by 64.

Mitered X Quilt
completed June 2015

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