I am a lover of the scrappy quilt. There is something about a scrap quilt that brings visions of a family, working, playing, living and learning together that brings comfort to my soul. Having told my friends time and again how much I love scrappy quilts and showing the scrap quilts I have made in the past, everyone is aware of my love of this part of the art of quilting. A friend knowing this brought by a book that she had aquired for me to look at the different patterns. While thumbing through the book I came across a pattern that was just a jumble of rectangular pieces of fabric that were sewn together in a particular pattern. The picture shown was a very busy quilt, with no apparent pattern and was much too busy for my taste, but the more I looked at the pattern the more I thought that could be a beautiful quilt if.... and my mind started whirling. Well the quilt isn't finished yet, but I have already made up 12 blocks of what promises to be a wonderful scrap quilt.
What I decided to do really isn't that complicated. This particular block begins with two center rectangles which form a square when sewn together. Next you sew a row of rectangles around the center block, much in the fashion of a pineapple or courthouse steps pattern and continue around the block with a 3rd row and then a 4th row the end product being a 12 1/2" block. This is a wonderful way to use up scrap fabric but as I said, too busy for my taste. What do you do to decrease the busy appearance? My ideal was to change rows 2 and 4 to one fabric instead of a row of the smaller rectangles, and in addition to that I decided that I wanted to stick with a specific color scheme for those two rows.
When I looked at the option I was thinking about I realized that if each block ended in the same specific color that would not be good. I decided to solve this problem by using a couple of colors and alternating them withing the block. Maybe black and white. What I finally decided was to use black and white but not a solid, instead using a black on white print, and a white on black print.
Unlike some people I don't believe that every piece of fabric in a scrap quilt has to be scrap. I believe you can purchase sashing, borders and even some fabric to put in the quilt and it remains a scrap if you are using more than one-third of the fabric from your scrap bag. I look at it this way, I'm still using scraps and saving because I'm not purchasing the entire amount of fabric needed for the quilt. I will have a beautiful quilt that is coordinated and looks good and really doesn't even look like a scrap quilt most of the time.
Now it was time to go to the store to purchase some fabric. I had already been through my stash and collected my black and white prints and knew I needed some more white on black to make the quilt. Well when I got to the fabric store I found some prints that were the same pattern reversed, white on black and black on white. An ideal was born. Use the same pattern with reverse colors, but not just one pattern but several. Well I've completed several blocks on my project and am looking forward to completing the entire quilt.
When you pick up a book of patterns, instead of thinking of it as a book of patterns, think of it as a book of possibilities. How would it look if?????