When you go into a Quilt Shop these days, it's sometimes confusing and you might wonder if you are in a Bakery instead. There's Jelly Rolls, Layer Cakes, Honey Buns (getting hungry yet?) and the newest - Candy Bars. No, I'm not talking about indulging your sweet tooth (although that's one of my favourite things to do, especially if chocolate is involved...hint hint wink wink). No, I'm talking about fabric "pre-cuts". You probably already know that a Jelly Roll is a pack of 2.5" strips and a Honey Bun is a pack of 1.5" strips. A Layer Cake is a pack of 10" squares and a Charm Pack has 5" squares. The newest "sweet" on the block is a Candy Bar which is a pack of 2.5" x 5" rectangles. And although we don't see them often here in my corner of the world, apparently there are also Dessert Rolls (5 strips that are 5" x 45") and Turnovers (80 6" triangles). Pre-cuts- a whole new world in quilting. Very clever marketing strategy!! All of these, of course are collections of co-ordinated fabrics.
I seem to be a bit behind the times in that I have not foraged far into this new world of "pre-cuts". I tend to like to choose my own fabrics, and Lord knows, I've chosen quite a few over the years- I could probably open up my own Fabric Shop (that is IF I wanted to part with them, which I don't. Yet.) I did buy my first Bali Pop this past summer- that's a pack of co-ordinated 2.5" strips of Bali fabrics from Hoffman. I love love love the colors and can't wait to use it. Just one small problem- I'm still waiting for the inspiration to hit. What to do with it? I'm still looking for a design I really like....
But I digress. This post was to talk about my latest quick project. I picked up a Charm pack recently - my first! How exciting! I chose North Woods Botanical (by Holly Taylor for Moda). I was in a new shop and I have to admit- I just couldn't help myself - I simply got carried away with the excitement, frenzy, call it whatever you want. (C'mon, admit it- You know EXACTLY what I mean!!) ANYWAY- when I got home, I thought now what am I going to do with this????
I rarely buy Modas. I rarely buy Christmas fabric. WHAT was I thinking? I do like the more subdued reds and greens and I did love the prints of pine sprigs, pine cones, holly leaves, etc.
Well, after some serious web and blog surfing I did come across something that fit my bill- quick, easy, not too large - the Disappearing Nine Patch. Yes! That's what I'll make - 4 large blocks will give me 16 blocks to make into a table center. Perfect.
So - here it is: I used 36 of the 42 squares in the Charm Pack and made 4 nine patches. Since Charm Packs are 5" squares, these are 14" (unfinished) nine patches. Here you see several- I chose 5 darks and 4 lights for each block- darks in center and corners.
As I laid this one out, I thought - can't do that- 2 greens on top, 2 reds on bottom...but then I realized it won't matter. You'll see why next...
After pressing the seams, cut each nine patch in half, vertically and horizontally, giving you four smaller blocks. So I will end up with 16 blocks.
Here is one possible layout.
Here is another.
I'm going to play around on my design wall to see what other layouts I can come up with. I'll share the finished design with you in a few days.....
This is a very simple quilt design - easy to construct, great for beginners. Great for scraps, also great for Charm Packs. It may also work for an I Spy quilt. Doing the Math is very simple- take the size of your original fabric squares, multiply by 3 (3 across in the 9 patch), divide by 2 (when you cut in half) and subtract 1 (for seam allowances). The resulting number will be the finished size of your block.
So if you are using a Charm Pack: 5" x 3 = 15/2 = 7.5 -1= 6.5"
If you had 6" squares: 6" x 3 = 18/2 = 9 -1 = 8"
If you use 7" squares: 7" x 3 = 21/2 = 10.5 -1 = 9.5"
I saw this Disappearing Ninepatch on Judy Laquidara's blog. If you're not familiar with Judy, she is very prolific and makes many beautiful scrap quilts. Definitely worth a frequent look!!
Don't forget today is the last day to enter my Giveaway. I'll be drawing the Winners tonight at 9 pm Atlantic Time, and announcing them tomorrow morning... See you then!! :)
And a very Happy Thanksgiving to all my American friends/ followers/readers!!
Is a nine patch part of a twelve step program?