Quilter's Academy - Volume 2 - Sophomore Year

Vol 3 - Junior Year

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Vol 2 - Project 5 - Cabin in the Cotton - Julie's Quilt

Hello again.  I'm back from the mainland after doing the grandma thing, helping out the new Mum & Dad.  Milly is lovely and I know she'll be much changed when I next see her, which won't be until early next year.

Work has begun on the next quilt in the book - a log cabin design.

Its a very pretty quilt and I really like the 1930's prints used here.  This quilt is a lesson in adding sashing between the blocks - something not tackled yet on any of the previous projects.

As it's my intention to make all the quilts from all 6 of the books (notice the word "intention"), I'm going to end up with a load of quilts, far more than I can possibly use.  So I've asked a few friends to choose a design from Vol 2 and to choose fabrics from my stash and I will gift them the quilt when it's all done.  Julie has chosen this one.

I have a nice little selection of 1930's prints but Julie decided these were not her style.  She wanted something a bit brighter and definitely not a white background.  This is what she chose.........

Julie's Fabrics

Most of the fabrics are batiks, with a few hand-dyes thrown in.  We pondered the sashing material for a while, trying out creams, yellows, greys and tans, but as soon as I threw down the black, she was sold!  The brights really glow against the dark background - I think these fabrics are going to look fabulous.

This quilt is made from Fat Quarters and the pattern calls for 13 different fabrics - you may notice Julie's selection has 19 fabrics  ???  There are 2 reasons for this, the first is that we want to make the quilt larger.  It's crib size but a lap quilt would be more useful, so I'm going to add 4 extra blocks and make the quilt square.  The second reason is that Julie had such a hard time culling the selection!  I pulled out all the batik FQ's I had in my stash, plus a few others to synchronise the colours and Julie was supposed to choose from these.  She managed to reject only 1 FQ - lol!

I think the hardest part for me in putting this quilt together will be the random selection.  The idea is to cut all the strips, put them in a box and pull them out at random - whatever comes out of the box is the next log to be sewn.  The control freak in me is going to have a problem with this!  For this reason, Julie had to make sure all the fabrics would work together, regardless of which colour is put next to another.

Because I want to change the size of this quilt, I have to do some extra work.  Harriet very kindly explains exactly how many strips to cut for each of the patterns, but this is supposed to be a tutorial, not a pattern book, so all the formulas for doing the calculations are also explained and included.  To work out how many strips to cut from each of the FQ's I needed to go back to Vol 1 and refer to the very handy chart which details working out yardage for log cabin quilts.

Even with the chart, I needed to do some adjustments i.e. working with FQ's instead of yardage and calculating in the 4 extra blocks and 5 extra fabrics.  I'm never very trusting of my mathematical abilities and the whole project could go horribly wrong - but the only real way to learn is to do, so I'm giving it a shot.

Milly enjoying her new quilt and her new Grandma!


  1. wow, she is so beautiful. She is wrapped in love, and looks like a little flower, the little rosebud.

  2. The quilt definitely is made for her as it's colouring just makes her look more beautiful snuggled up in it!

  3. She is pretty isn't she? Better looking than most newborns, I remember mine being a lot less attractive, but I thought they were gorgeous anyway!

  4. Milly is lovely - and you look far too young to be a Grandma !

    I know you are a perfectionist, so watch out for the black. A tone on tone or handdye black will give you fewer heart aches.

    Why does plain black give heart aches ? It attracts white threads, and seems to some how encourage batting to beard through it. A black batting will help - and also get those brights to shine.

    Hugz Helen

  5. Hi Helen - LTNS and always incredibly helpful as usual. The deal for my gifted projects is that all the fabrics have to come from my current stash - so solid black it will have to be.

    Using black batting hadn't occurred to me - brilliant! Thankyou. :)

  6. Milly is really cute. I'm interested to follow your quilting journey. I have one of Harriet's books - the machine quilting one I think. My problem is I want to do it ALL NOW! :)

  7. Munaiba it's worth the effort, it really is. Give it a go!

  8. Hey she is the cutest little treasure such a gorgeous quilt made with love. Saw your post on SCQ. welcome to the group and hope you learn lots more. I'm an ex tassie girl thats why I noticed. Enjoy chrisb

  9. Hi Chris - I'm an ex-Melb girl but will never leave Tassie - it's brilliant! Lots of very talented quilters here, always willing to help. Thanks for dropping by.

  10. Hi Lesley, Milly is beautuful and the quilt looks so snuggly. You don't look half bad yourself, beaming with pride and happiness! Nice to have you back, I will look forward to reading more on your blog. BTW we had a great sewing day last Saturday.

  11. Lesley,
    She's a beautiful baby, isn't she?
    About Helen's suggestion of black batt, there is some at Frangipani Fabrics- looks interesting and worth a trial at the very least.
    There is something about black anything attracting white thread, fluff and fur, some strange law of electrostatic attraction in play surely?

  12. Hi Susan - I had an unexpected trip to Launceston on Saturday, so no sewing for me (again)! Milly is a sweetie and is even prettier when she opens her eyes, which isn't often as she's a really sleepyhead

    Hi Stephanie - Nice to catch up with you in Launceston - I'm using the thread in the Record and it's working a treat.

    I don't know about electrostatic attraction, but there is definitely light coloured cat attraction - Floyd makes a point on sitting on all black fabrics!

  13. Lesley,
    Yep the thread is good stuff and comes in a gazillion colours (almost). Almost good enough to eat.
    My white British shorthair makes a bee line for anything dark or black, ensuring her fashion statement is made in short order. Funnily enough part of her official pedigree name includes "Miss Fashionista" which we never call her- (the breeder assigned the name) but she is clearly living up to her namesake!