Saturday, November 2, 2013

Christmas twister

I had found an advertisement for a box of assorted Christmas fabric scraps for ten dollars. Who could resist that kind of deal? I snatched it up in a hurry! Unfortunately, many of the fabrics are not my usual kind of quilting colors, so it has sat untouched for almost a year now... 

Today, the snow is falling and it's looking a little blustery outside, so the itch to make wintery things has hit me. I have a Twister ruler that I've never used, and thought these Christmas fabrics might be just the thing to give it a try. I needed 36 ten inch squares plus a border. There were 42 different fabrics in the box, in all different conditions; some seemed brand new and untouched, some were prewashed, some had pieces cut out of them, some were just leftover scraps from someone else's projects. I just pulled one fabric out at a time, and if it was big enough to cut a ten inch square, I cut it out. It was easy to come up with 36 different squares this way.

I laid them out on the floor and tried to go for a pleasing, but random arrangement. For a border, I opted to go with white.

This is how the pattern instructs me to begin. All the squares are sewn together, and a border is added all the way around.

Then I use this fancy ruler to cut up all the blocks I just put together.

Then I sew them back together in the new arrangement, and I have a completed quilt top like this one. It finishes about a third smaller than it started, and I have a 4" square of each color leftover from the cutting process. I can leave it as is, or I can add a border or two to make it bigger. 

Here's what I would do differently next time: 

  • watch the placement of similar colors next to each other (the two browns in the bottom row, for example)
  • if using white as a border, put darker blocks along the edges where the border joins to avoid lights next to white
  • solid colors and small prints look best (large prints are just too busy and the pinwheel effect gets lost)
I enjoyed the simplicity of this pattern. The instructions were easy to follow. The ruler has these little grippy feet that makes it a breeze to work with. The blocks were large. It was made in one day, in about 8 hours from start to finish (would be even faster if you used a layer cake precut). 

I think I would be inclined to do another one.

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