Monday, October 7, 2013

Twisting Away the Afternoon with Quiltography

I am a sucker for a gadget...sorry, a tool! When I saw this one I literally dreamt about it until I got it. The thought of quickly made pinwheels intrigued me. It is a "template" that allows cutting of completed pinwheel blocks from a sewn patchwork background. I have used it on many occasions. But, I am tired of table centers that are square or oblong.

It took me a while to realize that the basis of each design for the Lil Twister was simply a square. Of course, I purchased a charm pack that was really calling me name. And I went to town! To get an idea of how many of each charm per color theme that I had I sorted my charms into 4 basic colors: green, brown, beige and orange. There were 40 in all.

I knew that I would need background squares for my project, but I really needed a project first! Enter Quiltography. In this amazing app I was able to create a layout grid for my colors. (I doesn't look like anything yet. That is the surprise!)

I tried to arrange the colors to number 40. And then counted my background fabric and started cutting. 
First, I cut 5" strips with my Accuquilt 5" strip die. 

Next, I turned my strips and fanfolded them perpendicular to the die blades. With the cutter's help---perfect 5" squares. 

Adding my background fabrics to the charm pack, I was ready to go!

To the bedroom that is where I could lay my fabric out according to my Quiltography layout. (Don't look too closely, I realized after this that I missed a complete row. That is what happens when I hurry!)

I sew these quilts together row by row. It is simple patchwork at this point. When I have finished stitching the 5" seams, I label each row in consecutive order, 1-10. I also have a method for pressing my seams: odd number rows press to the left, even number rows press to the right. That makes assembly of rows so easy!

10 rows with 10 squares per row went together pretty quickly! Here is the mid-point of my project:

Looks pretty much like the Quiltography plan, huh? The quilt above measures 45 " square. The finished quilt will be smaller, probably about 35" square. I keep my scraps for other projects. 

On to the twisting part.... Looking at the photo below, note the black lines at the intersection of the four seams. That is how to place the template. Next,  I cut around the template.

Over time I have realized that it is important to keep the cut blocks in the same order as they were cut. I have found this easiest to cut a row and sew it back together (following the template instructions) as I go, labeling each row with a number!

Within a couple of hours I had my finished Lil Twister top. NOW it looks very different from the beginning! Quiltography and I will twist away another afternoon really soon. Care to joint in?


Lil Twister Template (
Accuquilt Go 5" strip die # 55023 
One Moda Charm Pack
Fabric for background squares. 
Fabric for !" outer border
Fabric for 3" final border
Fabric for backing and binding
Batting, thread. 

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