Sunday, May 23, 2021

Stars & Stripes Bonus Quilt

There is a quilt along happening right now on Instagram using the Stars & Stripes quilt patterns by Thimble Blossoms.  Click HERE to read all about it!  Thimble Blossoms has two Stars & Stripes patterns and you can make either for the quilt along.  You can head to her website to check those out. 

I'm making the original Stars & Stripes because I already had a kit that I had purchased last summer.  The fabrics in that kit, shown below, are Mackinac Island by Minick & Simpson for Moda Fabrics.

While cutting out my pieces last night, I realized that there is a lot of leftover fabric from the fat quarters.  I decided to cut as many 5" squares as I could.  I was able to cut the following: 

* From the five BLUE fat quarters: two 5" wide strips, each subcut into four 5" squares.  You should get a total of 8 squares per fat quarter and a total of 40 blue squares.  

* From seven RED fat quarters: one 5" wide strip subcut into four 5" squares.  You should be get a total of 4 squares per fat quarter and a total of 28 red squares.

* From the one RED fat quarter that has more left over, cut two 5" strips and subcut each into four 5" squares for a total of 8 squares from this fat quarter.  When added to the other red squares, you will have a total of 36 red squares.

I started thinking about what I could do with those squares and I think I came up with the perfect plan!  I can use my Garden Charm pattern and with a minor modification, I can make maximum use of the 5" squares!

To test out my idea, I drew up the quilt in my Electric Quilt 8 software, imported the images of the prints that I downloaded from the Moda Fabrics website, and mocked up a couple of options to see what I thought.

With an on-point quilt, in order to alternate between two different colors, you need more of one color than the other.  The first quilt I tried out used 36 red squares and 25 blue squares.  

That left 15 blue squares left over.  If I cut them into 2.5" squares, I would have 60 squares, which is exactly how many squares needed for the cornerstones on the sashing (the cornerstones in the original Garden Charm quilt are the same as the background fabric).  

This is the minor modification I mentioned earlier.  When cutting the 2.5" squares from the background fabric, cut 60 less than the pattern calls for.  Everything else stays the same as the original pattern.  

I used a solid white for the accent fabric and a light gray for the background and the result is below!


I decided to swap the red and the blue, just to see what it looked like and that result is below.  I think I actually like that one better, even though it doesn't use all of the squares that I cut.


Because I have less red squares, there are not quite enough for all the cornerstones.  To solve that problem, I left the cornerstones that end up on the quilt edges as background fabric.  If you do this yourself, just make sure that there are no red cornerstones on the ends of any sashing strips.  This should make sense if you have the pattern.

This will use 36 blue squares, 25 red squares, plus 10 red squares cut into 2.5" squares (40 total, which means you would cut 40 less 2.5" squares from the background fabric than the pattern calls for).

I made both versions with a light gray background because I know I have a few yards of gray in my stash.  I couldn't stop there though.  I had to try out some other colors and now I'm not sure what I want to do.  I'm definitely not above buying new fabric if I like it better!

Which of these background colors do you like the best?

These colors are just the solid colors that are available in the EQ8 software so they don't correspond to any particular solid fabric colors or manufacturers.  I'll just look for something close to whichever I decide to make.  At the moment, I'm leaning towards one of the last two shown here.  That could change though!  I really like the lighter of the two brown versions too!

If you think you'll make a Garden Charm quilt with your leftover fabrics, let me know in the comments below and tell me what color you would use for the background!  What else would you change?  Should I try something other than white for the accent?

Keep an eye on my Instagram account to see what I end up making!  You'll want to see my Stars & Stripes quilt there too!

Until next time,




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