Wednesday, January 23, 2013

More Charity Quilt Recipes--Baby Pinwheel Quilt

Writing patterns is hard work!  And I don't really think it's my thing.  But I do want to share some easy patterns for charity quilts.
My solution--write them up like recipes.  Here goes.
Baby Pinwheel Quilt
1.  Make 128 half square triangles that finish 2 in. square.  Use your favorite method--Easy Angle, Thangles, drawing lines on squares, etc.  If you are cutting triangles, you will need 128 dark and 128 light.
I LOVE the Accuquilt cutter.  It makes dozens of triangles (literally) at one pass. You will be making your half squares with one light triangle and one dark one. 
2.  Sew 4 of the half square triangles into a pinwheel block.  Be sure to lay them out first, so you don't get them turned wrong.  (If there's a wrong way to do something, you can be sure I have done it at least once.)  Some of the blocks have just 2 fabrics, the light and the dark.  Others are mixed and matched, after I ran out.
3.  Make 32 blocks.  The blocks will measure 4.5 in. square unfinished, 4 in. finished.
4.  Choose a fabric for the alternate blocks.  Novelty prints are fun, but just about anything will work.  You will need 31 squares cut 4.5 in. square.  This will probably be 4 strips of the fabric, so you'll need about half a yard.  Cut the squares.
5.  Set the quilt together, following the picture.  There are 7 squares across and 9 squares down.  Rows 1, 3, 5, 7, and 9 begin and end with a pinwheel.  Rows 2, 4, 6, and 8 begin and end with an alternate square.
6.  Add a border.  I like to use a darker fabric for the outside border.  Mine was cut 4.5 in wide, to finish 4 in.  You need 4 strips, which is a half yard of fabric (a little more is a good idea, so you can square up the fabric, and in case you make a mistake).  Add the side borders first, then the top and bottom.
8.  Layer, baste, and machine quilt.  I quilted in the ditch around each square, and put my wavy stencil on the border again.  Hey, it's easy and fast, and it looks nice.
9.  I bind my charity quilts by cutting straight grain strips 2.5 in. wide, sewing them together with a diagonal seam, and sewing the doubled binding on the BACK of the quilt first.  Then I turn it to the front, pin it down, and sew it down by machine.  This makes a durable binding, and saves me the handwork.
10.  The finished measurements are:  36 in. wide x 44 in. long.

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