Looking for a not-so-huge project? Try my 48-inch square Ohio Star quilt pattern, sewn from two quilt blocks. The primary block is Ohio Star, but you might not recognize it immediately. I’ve shifted the contrast a bit from the ‘traditional’ layout and placed the blocks on point. Four simple X-like blocks rest in the center of the quilt and link up with the Ohio Stars at block corners. You’ll find the pattern at my About.com Quilting website.
Country Roads is a quilt block pattern you’ll find on my About.com Quilting site. It’s super easy — all straight-grain patches that are beginner friendly (but with enough layout variations to make the design interesting to quilters of all skill levels). Choose entirely different colors and colors values to change the design in any way that suits you, and go completely scrappy if you like.
Call them wonky or call them freehand, but not matter what they’re called these log cabin blocks are easy as can be to sew. No templates and no precise cutting… just grab a background and some strips of fabric and sew. Your blocks might look entirely different than mine, and that’s fine, the more unique the better. The log cabin blocks are sewn using simple string quilting techniques, and you’ll find the pattern at my About.com Quilting website.
Even though their fabrics vary, string layouts can be somewhat structured, like the block shown here, or sewn in an entirely random way. String blocks can also be cut into triangles (or other shapes) after sewing to create lots of variety when they’re re-assembled into a quilt.
The pattern for this quilt block is published on my other quilting web site, About.com Quilting, along with general instructions to help you create additional string projects. Give the technique a try the next time you want to make a simple, stash-busting quilt.
Squares and rectangles, and a bit of quick piecing — that’s all it takes to create this 12″ Rising Star quilt block. The design is one of many from the Evening Star realm, also called Sawtooth Star. I’ve included a couple of quilt layout options to help you choose fabrics for multiple quilt blocks.
My red and white block has an orderly color arrangement, but get as scrappy as you’d like when sewing the stars.
Sawtooth Star quilt blocks are an all-time favorite, and the ‘Frayed’ version adds some extra design elements that let you play around with fabrics — change the contrast from block to block to create a scrappy variety of looks.
Frayed Sawtooth Star finishes at 12-inches square and is very easy to make, because all of its patchwork components are assembled with quick piecing techniques. I’ve included a few extra color options to help illustrate how changing just a few fabrics can alter the design.
I love to sew with border print fabrics, which are created by printing a series of decorative borders along the length of fabric (I’ve seen a few printed crosswise, from selvage to selvage, but those prints are in the minority.
The entire width of each border motif can be used by itself, or cut apart to focus on a specific section that works with a quilting project. Use the prints to create borders for a quilt, or cut sections of the motifs in ways that, when patches are sewn together, resemble a kaleidoscope.
I used a border print to sew the inner borders of the quilt shown to the right. Like-motifs match-up at the mitered borders, creating a continuation of the design.
Take a closer look, and learn more about using border prints in quilts.
Basket quilts are year-around favorites, but there’s something special about creating colorful baskets geared specifically for spring and summer. Most basket designs give your half-square triangle skills a workout, but not to worry, because those units are easy to sew with quick piecing techniques. Another plus — baskets look fantastic made with leftover scraps, so raid your stash and start sewing.
Some of our visitors know that I’m the author of another quilting site, too — Quilting at About.com. You’ll find hundreds more quilting patterns and tutorials there, so be sure to take a look at links to some of the most popular quilting pages.