It is my pleasure to welcome a guest post today written by Francine Koehler. Francine will be walking us through how to make a raglan Star Quilt. She will be introducing ‘new to me’ tricks and tools that I can’t wait to try out myself – and trust me this will be a project I plan on tackling when I find some time!
So get ready to be inspired to make your couch nice and cozy during these cold winter days…
These quilts are nice for sitting on the couch on a cold winters’ night. This pattern is my own design using some known techniques and my new toy the Big Shot from Stamping Up.
Let me first introduce my new toy, the Big Shot. I got introduced to this little gem while attending a greeting card workshop and then discovered it also cuts fabric. That did me in; at that point I had to have it!
This machine is used to cut out different shapes and designs, depending on the dyes you select. The designs can then be used to create many different projects from cards, to quilts, to bibs etc. In today’s project I used it to cut out star designs that I’m going to appliqué on my quilt.
The big shot is so simple to use; layer the plexiglass sheet, the dye (this is what cuts the fabric), the fabric and the second plexiglass sheet and run it through the big shot manually by turning the handle. Voila, you have a perfect design.
NOTE: the layering technique will change depending on what dye is selected. The machine comes with instructions on how to layer each dye.
To start this quilt you will need to select four coordinating flannel fabrics. I used flannel for its warmth and its great ability to fray. I selected a green and beige plaid, a red and beige plaid, a plain green and a plain beige flannel.
My quilt measures 42” x 42” in size. This is a great size for a couch or even as an extra blanket on your bed. To start, I cut out 72 – 9” squares. Broken down as follows:
- 18 green plaid squares
- 18 plain green squares
- 18 red plaid squares
- 18 plain beige squares
I then cut out 36 – 6” squares of quilting batting and several 6” squares of both the red and green plaid to use for cutting the stars. I needed 20 of both the large and medium size stars in the red plaid and 18 of both the large and medium stars in the green plaid.
Now, the work is over and the fun begins. With everything cut, you are now ready to start putting the quilt together. The positioning of the squares and ultimately the design of the quilt is all up to you. You will want to decide how many star squares you want and how many plaid squares. Also, think about how you will place the squares in each row to make your design. I actually built the quilt one row of squares at a time and determined what the pattern for each row would be as I went along. I made the squares for each row as I got to that row. All 72 squares were layered together, but I didn’t decide how I was going to sew them until I needed them.
With the 72 – 9” squares, you want to layer a plain square, batting and a plaid square together to make 36 squares in total. I layered the green plaid with a plain green flannel and the red plaid square with a plain beige square.
For the squares that will not get the stars appliquéd on them, the plaid side will be the front of the quilt. To make these squares, I used a straight stitch and sewed through all three layers from corner to corner, making an X on the square.
For the squares that will have the stars appliquéd on them, the plain flannel square will be the front of the quilt.
Now I have been using the term appliqué. What I mean by this term, is sewing a separate piece of fabric on to another piece of fabric.
I used a zigzag stitch to apply the stars through all three layers on the plain side of my squares. I used 2 large stars and 2 medium stars for each square. You could use whatever you want – the design is all yours.
For the plain beige squares I used red plaid stars, for the green plain squares I used the green plaid stars. Again, the choice is yours.
*REMEMBER*: you need to sew through all three layers, the plain fabric, the batting and the plaid fabric and you want to sew around the design, in this case the star.
Remember; think about your quilt pattern before you make up all your squares so you make enough squares of each pattern. As I indicated before, I put my quilt together one row at a time making my squares, as I needed them. My quilt is made up of 6 rows of 6 squares arranged in the pattern below. The squares are sewn together with the seams to the front of the quilt. These seams will be cut up at the end to make the raglan look.
Row One: green plaid square; plain beige square with red stars; red plaid square; plain green square with green stars; green plaid square; plain beige square with red stars
Row Two: plain green square with green stars; red plaid square; plain beige square with red stars; green plaid square; plain green square with green stars; red plaid square
Row Three: green plaid square; plain green with green stars; red plaid square; plain beige with red stars; green plaid square; plain green with green stars
Row Four: plain beige with red stars; green plaid square; plain green with green stars; red plaid square; plain beige with red stars; green plaid square
Row Five: red plaid square; plain beige with red stars; green plaid square; plain green with green stars; red plaid square; plain beige with stars
Row Six: plain beige with red stars; green plaid square; plain green with green stars; red plaid square; plain beige with red stars; green plaid
When sewing the squares together, sew each square to the next with a 1/4” seam allowance to the front of the quilt. Attach each row together the same way. Once all the squares and rows are together, sew around the whole quilt using a 1/4” sew allowance as well. I used a fancier stitch for my border but that option is all yours; a straight stitch works well too.
Now for the fun, take a pair of scissors and snip the seams all around the quilt and around each square. This is done to provide the raglan look. Be careful while doing this so you don’t cut through your seams. Make each snip fairly close to the next, about 1/8” apart. When finished snipping around the quilt and around all the squares, wash and dry the quilt and you are finished. Your quilt will have a great frayed look on the front and a very nicely finished back.