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Saturday, January 2, 2010

A quilt rebel log cabin tutorial

I WANTED to title this post: How to finish more than one quilt block during nap time when your child has NEVER taken even an hour long nap let alone the long naps that OTHER moms talk about...but I am not bitter about it...
But I figured that post title might be a tad bit too long :)

There are a million ways to make a log cabin quilt block and half a million tutorials you could find online. But after looking (coveting) at a lot of log cabin quilts on Flickr (some day I will write a post about my slight obsession with Flickr!), this is what I came up with to share...I started quilting/patchwork sewing before I had any other tools beyond my sewing machine and some scrapbooking scissors. You NEED no other tools than that to make this easy peasy quilt block...

Warning for the expert quilter: my methods may seem wild and crazy. I promise that I can sew and quilt by the rules and I do the majority of the time...but my favorite thing about quilting is that it can be completely by the books or completely down and dirty. THIS is down and dirty...
Step 1:
Cut strips of your favorite fabrics OR unroll a pack of pre-cut fabrics-I am using a Moda* Momo Wonderland jelly roll-each strip is 2.5 inches wide, which is a good width for your strips...make the strips as long as you like but 10-12 inches is a good length.
*(I love Moda pre-cut fabrics almost as much as I love flickr!)

Step 2:
Cut 2 squares out of your fabric and sew them together. Since I used the jelly roll, I made the squares 2.5 x 2.5 inches. (NOTE: to sew the pieces together correctly, always place the right sides together...and the right sides, if you didn't know, are the sides with the print...)

Step 3:

Here is the start of the down and dirty part...Lay your sewn together squares and line up one of your strips against the long side...cut the strip to the same length. Don't get out your rotary cutter...don't get out your ruler...just cut it and get on to step 4...your kid might wake up soon and time is of the essence!

Oh yeah- sew the pieces together...

Step 3 (through how ever big you wanna make your quilt square...):

Keep going around the square/rectangle in a circular motion (I typically add a strip moving clockwise, however, this isn't can add strips willy nilly if you want! This is down and dirty!)

Yes, I used pins to get my strips to lay still when I sewed them, however this is because I am a clutz and need assistance. You may have sewing skills and can sew small strips together without the need for pins.

See me cutting with my left hand? Ha! That is because I am trying to take a picture with my right do people make these tutorials so pretty and show them using both hands?? And how do they get them done with perfect natural light that is only available when your 2 year old is awake? Thus, I took these pictures at night which is why they look all crazy...

See? Still cutting and adding till I feel like the square is the size I want...

Ta da! I finished one square. I added a random extra strip on the sides of my square for need to do this. Or you could add random strips where ever you feel like it.

So, you made a log cabin quilt what? Whatever you want! Use one square and make a pillow. Make a bunch and make a quilt. Use them to make placemats...Make tiny ones for coasters! Make a mini wall hanging with it...the possibilities are endless!

Check out these great links to all the different ways that a log cabin quilt can look:

Wonky square type log cabin Quilt

Another Wonky log cabin quilt

Oh, guess what...another wonky log cabin

Traditional log cabin quilts-check out the way the color strips are added to create additional patterns...

Example of a half log cabin block quilt

Interesting fact of the day: the log cabin pattern has been seen in Egyptian could say it is REALLY Old School!


Liz said...

love, love, love, love, love!! now if i could only figure out a way to give myself 4 extra hours in a day so that i could have time to make some of these!!

LauraC said...

Okay I can't figure out your email address either. Mine should be in this comment but if not, email me at laura_e_case at yahoo to get set up with Nike+.

Super beautiful crafts. I always wanted to be a crafty person but I'm a nerd so I work at my software job to buy crafts from other people!

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