Quilter's Academy - Volume 2 - Sophomore Year

Vol 3 - Junior Year

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Vol 2 - Project 4 - Irish Garden (Milly's Quilt)

This is the alternate version of the previous quilt.  It's the same design, but smaller and the setting triangles are in a contrasting colour.  Here is Carrie Hargrave's version.....

I almost didn't make this one, because it's pretty much identical to the previous one.  As it turned out I'm glad I did as I learned something really important, which I'll explain later.  Also, as this top is quite small and I wanted to use the pink/blue colourway I'd played with on the previous quilt, I thought this may be a nice little quilt to make for my new granddaughter - who is yet to be born!  Amelia (who I promptly nicknamed Milly) is due to be born on September 10 (that's in a couple of weeks) and if she turns out to be a boy, um, I hope he likes pink!  The smaller size will be perfect in a pram or on the floor or to throw over a bouncinette or just to cuddle in.

I decided to play safe with the colour choices for this top, using a selection of coordinated fabrics from the one range - Chelsea Lace from Studio E - plus I added a white waffle weave cotton.

Ok, so it's not your average fabric selection for a baby quilt, but I don't have pink girly fabrics in my stash and I really love this design.  Yes it has lots of black but it does have butterflies and flowers (of sorts).  Hmmm......so when she's older I'll  make her a girly type one, with fairies or ballerinas, but for now, its pink and black Nouveau.

There are no separate instructions for this quilt so you need to count the blocks and make the fabric adjustments yourself.  For some reason I made just the right amount of rail fence blocks but made too many nine patches.....had a senior moment I guess.

Note to self - when making nine patches, use solids, tonals or tiny repeat prints.  Yes, I did it again - made the quilt top too busy looking by using the large print in the nine patch blocks.  Sigh. 

Pretty fabric in a large piece, but looks very different in 1 inch squares!

Originally I made the top square, as per the instructions, but decided to make it longer (using up those extra nine patches), thinking a rectangular quilt will be more practical than a square one.

Square layout

Rectangle layout

As I was stitching the rows together, I discovered something interesting............ check this out.

That triangle doesn't fit.   I unpicked, re-stitched and bingo........ all nice and as it should be.

The triangle was the correct size but must have been turned wrong.  As I was sorting out this little problem, I realised, with much embarrassment, that the previous 2 quilts both have the side setting triangle turned the wrong way. 

Now I thought there was something 'not quite right' with these quilts when I went to trim them up for the borders, but couldn't figure out what it was.  Basically, there was nothing to trim, the points from the blocks almost touched the edge of the row of triangles.  Not explained well, but a picture speaks etc etc.....

This is at the layout stage, and I hadn't twigged that something was wrong.

There's no border on Bryce's quilt but I had a hard time trying to trim the edges without removing the points of the blocks.

And again - the triangles only just fit.  As it's the same as the last one, I simply thought that's how it's done.

Metro Main Street had borders , but as there was no seam allowance  I had to sew over the points.

So this time, I was able to trim using the method from the book - measuring from the point, drawing a trimming line then slicing a nice neat edge.  All was well until I got to the corner triangles. 
Trimming the triangles

It's lucky I wanted to trim the edges to the exact size of the corners (otherwise there could've been tears!)

Don't you think these look a tad too small? I'm pretty sure they've been cut according to the size in the instructions but .....????? I had the same problem with the previous quilts. Maybe with the next one I'll be able to sort out what I'm doing wrong here.  Harriet?

I added 2 borders, but nearly stopped at one.  I really liked the look of the narrow blue/black border - it framed the top nicely. 

But there was still the problematic fabric in the nine patches - I needed to use the same fabric in the border simply to make sense of it all.

All finished.  I'm planning to quilt it with butterflies of course!

Now that I mention quilting, I think it's time to quilt up all the tops so far.  Apart from this one, they're all sandwiched, ditch stitched, and ready to go - except for the marking.  As I'll be using stencils, I'll ponce them as I quilt.


  1. Well done! I've never even done setting triangles yet! And I"ve been making quilts off and on for many years. I did have a chart I downloaded from somewhere for the 'formula' for the size of setting triangles....one of these days I'll venture into that new world...

  2. Hi Lesley,
    I'm not sure where the problem is with Metro Main Street. We always use method B on page 25 to figure the size of the square to cut in quarters for the side setting triangles. Did you read pages 24 - 26 closely? You would measure the DIAGONAL measurement of the rail or 9-patch block and add 2 1/2" - 3" to it. Cut a square of fabric for the side setting triangle that size square, then cut the square into fourths diagonally to give you 4 large triangles. That keeps the straight grain on the outside. Do you remember doing this? The corners are determined by the SQUARE measurement of the block, then add 2" and cut a square that size. Cut in half once diagonally. If you did all that, I don't have a clue how the side setting triangles we so small.
    The reason we make the side triangles so large is so that you can cut them down all the way to the points if you desire. They are generally not left as wide as they are once attached.
    Things are getting a bit more difficult from now on, so if you run into a bind, please email me and let me know. Things are looking good!!! And congratulations on the upcoming arrival of a new grand baby!

  3. I quite like the 'marshmallowy' look of this quilt top Lesley, almost good enough to eat?

  4. Free Indeed - nice of you to drop in! The book has all the formulas you need, my problem is getting my brain around it all, but if I can do it, you certainly can. Go for it!

  5. Hi Harriet. I have a shameful confession to make. As you have so thoughtfully already done the math in the book, I didn't bother - needless to say when something goes wrong, I don't have a clue. From now on I won't be so lazy and do the work myself. Thanks for the help though :)

  6. Hi Stephanie - Marshmallow huh? Funny you should say that. I'm halfway through ditch stitching it (taking a lunch break). The squares are puffing up beautifully and look very much like marshmallows. I'm using the last of the Hobbs Tuscany Wool - such a gorgeous batting, what a shame you can't get more for me.