***If you're looking for pretty pictures, skip this post which is a tutorial***
This is pretty, right? But here's the problem...
None of these blocks are connected to one another. They are lovely - both machine and hand-quilted. But nothing is attached.
You can see what the backing of the blocks looks like in this picture.
This method is from Sharon Pederson's Reversible Quilts: Two at a Time. And she has a follow-up book More Reversible Quilts. I must stress that this method isn't easier or harder than approaching a quilt in a traditional method. It's an alternative that I have found works for me. Having a walking foot is essential!
- 2" strips for the front connection
- 1.25" strips for the back connection
Cut strips the length of your block. In my case, I cut strips 15.5" long.
The white strips are 1.25". Those are for my back. The print strips are 2" and some are ironed in half.
Note: the measurement of the width of these strips is slightly different from what Sharon suggests in her book. My sewing is not as accurate as hers, and I find I needed my strips a bit wider that what she suggests.
Lining up the raw edges, pin the folded strip onto the front of your block.
Check your clipping on the front side as well, making sure you have caught all layers.
You can use pins here. I have found the clips make this slighter easier and more accurate.
- folded top strip
- single back strip
Be patient - the magic is about to happen...
And sew along that seam - see below...
Open up your blocks and go to the ironing board.
First, tug gently and make sure the edges of both blocks abut (my favorite vocab word with freshmen - "Hey, she said butt!). Press the edges down.
Now press the folded flap over this seam. And pin this flap in place, covering up all the raw edges.
Admire your handiwork.
Take a deep breath.
Repeat until your rows are connected.
Cut strips the width of your rows. For this one, it was 62".
Just use lots of pins and clips.
It's the same process.
Your rolls become longer...
- Practice this technique on small bits, making your own "cheat sheet" before you tackle a real project.
- Work with a thread color that will disappear into the backing. Sometimes my stitching was right on the connecting strip. But sometimes it was on the backing.
- When you think this method is too hard, stop and remember what it's like to quilt a big quilt on your domestic machine. This method? Not easier or harder - just an alternative that has worked for me!