Saturday, October 30, 2010

Blogger's Quilt Festival

So I was really hoping to have something new to put on for the Quilt Festival, but alas, my life got busy.  (as usual)  So after much debate, I decided to show an oldie, but a goodie :)  I actually touched on this quilt just a few days ago when I was writing about designing.

This is my "I Spy" quilt. This quilt is one of the few, and I mean very few, quilts that I have made for me or my family.  Meaning it still has residence in my home.  About 5 years ago my mother introduced me to the idea of an "I Spy" quilt and I was hooked.  I decided that day that I was going to make one large enough to take up the living room floor and allow for hours of play :)



 So I started collecting fabric.  It took a long time (especially as we were on a super tight budget while in school) to find 98 different "spying" blocks in assorted background colors. (Orange, it is a killer).  A little over a year (I wanted all the holidays represented), and a trip to my Mother-In-Laws fabric stash (thanks again Mom!)  and I had rounded up all my squares.  Then I began putting it together.

This quilt holds the record for longest time taken to put together a quilt top :)  I don't know if that is something I should be proud of, but it is true none the less.  Lets just say it took me "a while" to make it.


But oh, how happy I am with it.  My kids love to play "I Spy" and they run around in endless circles trying to find things. As they get more familiar with the quilt the "finding" gets more complex.  I am talking like "I Spy a frog that only has 2 toes" specific.   It is especially fun when it is my husband's turn and he always manages to have his hand conveniently covering exactly what the kids are spying :)



So that's my quilt!  EDIT **  I have had so many sweet requests for instructions on this quilt I just finished up a tutorial for it.  You can find it here, or under the tutorial tab at the top of the page :)  I hope you have enjoyed your visit here at Happy Quilting and feel free to return often :)  I love visitors!!  Now, head back to Amy's and check out some more quilts!  It's easy, just press the button :)



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Thursday, October 28, 2010

Designing Details - Day 2

Okay, so even though it is late, it is still "tomorrow", so onto the second installment of Designing Details.  Basically, these are just  a few little tidbits that I have discovered along my way of learning to design patterns.  Nothing big, and they are probably not for everyone, but here it is, my 2 cents :)

Tidbit #1 - You don't have to have EQ 7, or even 6 for that matter, to design. (Since this post I have gotten EQ 7 and love it, but still find, for certian patterns, I prefer good old excel.  Probably because I am used to it :)  I wish I had them, but I don't, so what do I design my quilts in you ask???  Excel would be the answer.  I know, crazy huh.  I think it was all of those classes I was required to take that made me learn the spreadsheet program inside out.  So naturally,  I found a way to use it in my "now" daily life.  I wouldn't suggest this unless you are familiar with the program.  I love it though.  Graph Paper gets the same effect just not some of the pluses I will mention next.

It tends to work best when you shrink down the rows and columns, make them square, and then consider them each to be 1" then you can get a good idea of proportions.  Triangles tend to be a bit of a pain as you have to get creative with the "auto shapes" but it works.  The thing I like best about Excel (verses graph paper) is that once I have the design input, I can play with the colors and patterns and be able to compare my options.  Just use a lot of Copy and Paste :)

  For Example . . . .Here is the same exact Disappearing 9 Patch pattern, but each has it's own set color scheme, I don't mean just different colors, but pattern of colors.



Excel also makes it easy to play with sizes of shapes and then you can compare as well, picking your favorite. Here is that Table Topper design I mentioned in yesterday's email.  Anyone care to guess which design I went with :)



So that is where my designing takes place once I have a good idea of a pattern in my mind. (For now at least, I really do hope to upgrade some day in the future :)   

Tidbit #2  - Inspiration can hit at any time, so be prepared!  I find that there are many nights that I lie in bed just thinking about ideas.  One will hit me and then I just sit there and think about it over and over so that I don't forget it by morning.  I eventually end up getting out of bed to go write it down.  So I finally got a little wise.  I went and bought a $1.00 notebook and put it on my nightstand, now I don't have to get out of bed.  I also got a second notebook and put it in my purse, it is great for when I am sitting at soccer practice and am daydreaming of designs.  Just something simple, it is a great place to throw down a little inspiration!



Tidbit #3 - If you can't figure it out in your head, just try it!  Sometimes I can make my head spin with the math trying to figure out if things are going to match up. (Especially when triangles are involved.)  So now, I just give it a go.  I have a bit of clearance fabric that is perfect for this. (I am talking the 75 cent a yard stuff that they can't get rid of at Wal-Mart)   Simply, cut out the sizes that you are wondering about sew them together and see if it works.  If it doesn't work, adjust and try again. Honestly, sometimes this is much faster than killing your brain over the math :)

Okay, so that is all the tidbits I can come up with right now.  I thought I had more but it is getting late and my brain is tired.  If I come up with more I will be sure to add them in the future.  Happy Designing to you all and may it bring you Happy Quilting!



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Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Designing Details - Day 1

Okay, so obviously, from my Moda Bake Shop ventures, you know that I have been dabbling in designing.  So I thought today I would share how that came to be and  then tomorrow I would share a few little designing tidbits that I have picked up and find very helpful.

I have always loved "playing" with patterns.  After about a year of quilting I really began to understand the math of seam allowances much better. (mostly learned from making errors :).  So then I started to have more freedom in my creations.  I would see a pattern or tutorial and think that would be perfect if only . . . . and then I realized, I could play with it to make that "if only" into that would be perfect!!  The great thing about quilting is that there are so many ways to make a pattern work for you!  Okay, so now it sounds like I am just babbling so let me share my first "playing" around quilt story.

5 years ago I decided I wanted to make an "I Spy Quilt".  I wanted it to be big enough for the kids to lay it across the entire floor and run around finding squares and I also wanted it to have color groupings.  So I started looking for a pattern and came up with nothing.  So I then stated to just look for something with "big squares" where I could put the "I Spy" blocks and some sort of border.  I found a pattern that is no longer is on-line but it looked a lot like this.  (Ya, it was a Christmas one)



I thought, perfect, I can work with this.  So I changed the big blocks into a set of 4 I spy color blocks, Added more blocks and changed the size of the current blocks to make it the size I wanted, and played with the colors until I got what I was looking for.  (I happened to be an accountant before I became a mom so when I say "play" with sizes, it really is like playing, I find the math in designing to be so much fun :)   In the end I had the design for my perfect "I Spy" quilt.



It took me a year or so to collect all the fabric (It is really hard to find fun prints in orange that have things to "Spy" on them that aren't always Halloween themed) and then a little longer than that to make, but I was, and still am, so happy with the result.  The kids never get tired of this "I Spy" game.



So that was the first time I strayed from the pattern.  I found myself doing this more and more.  I would not have enough of a particular fabric so I would change the design to fit how much I had, or I just really liked a part of the design but not another, so I would change it again.  Until one day, in the not so distant past, it hit me that I was changing more than I was keeping and I thought to myself, "I wonder if I can do this from scratch??"

So I gave it a go.  I started with a simple Table Topper that I made for my mom for Christmas, (Which I never got a picture of, Mom, can you take a picture of that this year and send it to me :)  Then there was a baby quilt after that, and then another, and then I thought, I love the  Moda Bake Shop I wonder if I could do that.  So I made my first Moda Bake Shop Pattern and Tutorial.  (Followed by hopefully many to come :)



 And that brings us to today.

Check back tomorrow, I am going to tell you some of my little tidbits that I have learned over the last bit that help me with my designing.

(P.S.  Just a little disclaimer - I find designing a wonderful and fun part of quilting but that is not to say I design everything I make.  I still find great joy in making up other patterns from other amazing designers :)
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Tuesday, October 26, 2010

And The Winner Is . . .

First Off, I have to say, WOW!!  Thank you for all of the wonderful and sweet comments about my quilt.  I am blushing!!  And thanks for the giggles as well, some of you are pretty funny!!  Second thing I have to say, I need to find out how to put numbers in my comments.  Hoolay! that was a lot of counting.

So without further ado, the winner of the beautiful Maison de Garance package is . . . .



#142 who is  . . . BARB!!!!  She said, What a lovely quilt and great instructions!


True Random Number Generator  142Powered by RANDOM.ORG


Thank you all for entering and for becoming new following friends.  I am sorry everyone can't win but I hope you find hanging out here just as much fun!
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Friday, October 22, 2010

Little Monster On The Go

Okay, so I was just so excited about the cute little templates that Bonnie made me that I couldn't wait to get them cut out and attached to my quilt top.  Now I just have to decide how I want to quilt it and in what color.  I have been going back and forth a lot.  Any suggestions???

Getting the applique done on this quilt was my goal for the One Thing One Week Challenge at Amy's Creative Side.  Ya!!!  I made my goal!


Oh, and if you have never been to Amy's Creative Side, you probably haven't heard of her Bloggers Quilt Festival.  This year will be my second time participating and I am so excited!  It is so much fun.  Take a second and check it out!

Oh, so I guess I should stop sidetracking and show some pictures now.  Here they are!!  I think the name of this quilt will be Little Monster On The Go, I know, super creative huh?



Here is a close up on the Monsters, Thanks again Bonnie!  They turned out great!!






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Thursday, October 21, 2010

Monsters for Project Modern

If you are looking for the giveaway it is here :)

First off, Let me say thank you to all of you amazing people that have left me such sweet comments about my Braided Irish Chain quilt at the Moda Bake Shop.  They truly warm my heart.  I have tried to respond back to everyone and have enjoyed getting to know you a bit more.  (We'll everyone that has an email available ).

Okay, so you remember how I said I am making my Project Modern quilt with inspiration from the Press Your Luck game show?   (If not, check this out)   Well I was able to use my Slice to cut out the letter appliquĆ© and then a cut a cute little bus, train, car, and airplane for the Whammies.  Unfortunately, there is no cutter template for Whammies, I know you are shocked.  So I talked to my dear sweet friend Bonnie who is also a great artist.  This is what she sent over this morning.  Aren't they just amazing!!  I can't wait to get them cut up in fabric and attached to the quilt top.  I am hoping to finish it up soon so stay tuned!!


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Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Braided Irish Chain for the Moda Bake Shop

I am so excited about this new Moda Bake Shop Tutorial!  It still seems so surreal that I am even designing for them and here I am with my second tutorial being released.  I am just so excited!  When designing this quilt, I really wanted to bring some flair to a traditional favorite.  I call it Braided Irish Chain.  Have I mentioned how excited I am about this??  So if you get a chance, head on over to the Moda Bake Shop and check it out.  If you love it, don't hesitate to leave a comment letting me know. 


And now that this Moda Bake Shop Tutorial has been published for quite a while, I am now able to post it here on my blog as well for easy convenience ;)   So just follow along below for the full step-by-step tutorial.  And if you just love it, you can get the printer friendly version here :)  
Also, I have since turned this tutorial into a Happy Quilting Pattern with 6 Additional sizes.  This quilt has always been a favorite, so I wanted to remake it very bed size friendly versions, as this tutorial version is a little long and skinny for a queen ;)  

But if you like a Long Queen and want to have room to tuck your pillows in as shown above . . . Here is how to make this version of Braided Irish Chain!!



1 -  A Morris Tapestry Jelly Roll  (I used this collection as I wanted a more traditional collection to match my twisted traditional pattern.  If you want a different collection so that it matches your room or what not, feel free.  You'll just need 40 Jelly Roll Strips.)

2 -  Moda Bella Solids Natural Jelly Rolls (If you are using a different collection make sure your solid coordinates )

2 3/4 Yard - Bella Solid Natural.  (You need exactly 2 3/4 yard so if they don't cut straight at the store, give yourself a bit extra to square things up.)

6 3/4 Yard - Coordinating Print for the Backing.  (You will cut this into three 2 1/4 pieces and sew them together to make the back.)



A quick side note before we start. I tried to make this tutorial very beginner friendly. If you are not a beginner, feel fee to simply skim the instructions for what you need. If you are a beginner and you happen to have questions, please don't hesitate to ask. You can email me at happyquiltingmelissa@gmail.com. I will try to answer all of your questions asap.  All sewing is done with 1/4 inch seams.


STEP 1 -  CUTTING 

Layout the strips of your jelly roll, lining them up with the 0 line at the base of the board.  I did mine 8 at a time and didn't double them up since you will be making several cuts and don't want things shifting.  


Cut across at the horizontal 16 1/2 inch line on your mat.  Now if your mat is like mine, you don't have a 16 1/2 inch line.  So how do you do this you ask?  Simple, just line your ruler up so that the first 1/2" mark is aligned with the 16 inch line on your mat.  You can check to make sure it is aligned along that 1/2" ruler mark between each of your strips.  So now, your ruler should be placed at exactly 16 1/2" up from the 0 line on your mat.  And just cut across all 8 pieces of your jelly strips.   Now without moving your fabric cut at the 19 inch horizontal line on your mat and the 21 1/2 inch line using the same method you did for the first cut.  This gives you a 33" long piece and 4 pieces that are 2 1/2" square in each print. (and a tiny bit of scrap selvage)  Repeat this process with all 40 of your print jelly roll strips.  Remember to take your time, precise cutting saves time in sewing :)


When you are finished, you should have a stack of (40) 33" long strips and (120) 2 1/2" squares.  This project only requires 54 of those squares.  I picked out 1 of each print and then 14 more squares of my favorite prints.  Set the remaining 66 squares in your stash to make up something fun in the future. (These are perfect for HSTs, as they are already cut and ready to go.)


Now grab your first Bella Solid Jelly Roll.  Isn't it so hard to open them up? They look so cute rolled in a roll.  Go ahead and open it up.  Layout  the jelly roll strips in the same fashion, 8 at a time, lining up along the base of the board on the 0 line.  


You are now going to make the same first cut at 16 1/2 inch line (using your ruler to create the line) . Then without moving any of your fabric, cut again along the 21 inch line on your mat.  This gives you a 33" strip and two 4 1/2" pieces out of each strip.  Repeat this process for all 40 strips in your Jelly Roll.   

 

Now we need to cut a few remaining pieces.  So break open your second solid Jelly Roll.  Lay out 6 strips from your jelly roll however, this time lay them slightly over the 0 line.  Only like 1/4".    
 

Start by aligning your ruler along the horizontal 0 line on your mat and cut off the tiny overhang.  So now you won't have any pieces that are folded.  Without moving any fabrics, slide your ruler up to the 8 1/2 inch line and cut horizontal.  (Now I know there is no 8 1/2" line but you are a pro at the ruler trick by now).  Continue to slide your ruler up and cut along the horizontal 17 inch line on your mat. Once more, slide your ruler up and cut along the 21 1/2" line. You should have four 8 1/2" strips and two 4 1/2" pieces out of each of the 6 strips.  So (24) 8 1/2" long pieces and 12 more 4 1/2" long pieces.

And now, we only need 4 more 4 1/2" pieces from our jelly roll.  So get one more strip out, line it up and cut 4 more 4 1/2" pieces.  I choose to take it from the top doubled up.  You can do that or whatever works best for your and your scrap needs.  

We are done with the pre-cut cutting.  Go ahead and pull out your solid yardage of neutral fabric.  (And iron it first; don't follow my poor example. I cut this one strip and then ironed because I already had my camera out and didn't want to forget where I was).  You are going to cut (22) 4 1/2" strips out of your yardage. 

Simply line your fabric along any vertical line on the far right of your mat making sure that the fold runs evenly across the 0 line on the bottom of your mat. If the edge of your fabric is not straight, line up your ruler on a vertical mat line closest to the edge of your fabric and cut along the mat line, giving you a nice straight edge to work with.  Now,  count over 4 1/2" on your mat, align your ruler along the top and bottom of that measurement and cut.  Keep doing this until you run out of mat and then start over repeating until you have 22 strips.    

You are going to take those strips and cut them up some more.  First, you are going to take 6 strips and cut them into four 10 1/2" pieces for a total of (24) 10 1/2" x 4 1/2" pieces.  You can do this the same way we cut the jelly roll strips before.  Line 3 strips along the bottom of your mat slightly hanging over the 0 line.  Cut along the 0 horizontal line.  Then measure up 10 1/2" and using your ruler trick, cut at 10 1/2 inches.  Then measure up another 10 1/2 inches which will put you at the 21 inch horizontal mat line and cut again.  Repeat this process with the other 3 strips.

Your almost there, just one more set of cuts.  Now you are going to cut the remaining 16 strips and cut them into six 6 1/2" pieces for a total of  (96) 6 1/2" x 4 1/2" pieces.  Once again, we are going to use the same method as above.  Line 3 strips along the bottom of your mat slightly hanging over the 0 line.  Cut along the 0 horizontal line.  Then measure up 6 1/2" and using your ruler trick, cut at 6 1/2 inches.  Then measure up another 6 1/2 inches which will put you at the 13 inch horizontal mat line and cut again. Now measure up 6 1/2" more to 19 1/2" and using your ruler, cut horizontal again.  There is some extra scrap along the top.   Repeat this process for all 22 strips.

Wow, you did it!!  Remember, this is a large quilt, so it is a large cutting job!  Just as a checklist, this is what you should have.  I made this picture a little larger so that you could see my little handwritten notes :)


STEP 2 - STRIP PIECING

Okay, so no one wants to stitch all of those squares together individually.  To save a huge amount of time, we are going to sew our strips together first, and then cut.  I call this Strip Piecing, I don't know if that is the technical name for this method but it works for me.  In this method, we are going to take a 33 inch strip of solid and a 33 inch strip of your print and sew them together.  So this is the idea of what it will look like.  As a side note, I like to turn my stitch length down a bit for strip piecing.  Since I will be going back and cutting these all up I find it helps to keep edges from coming undone.  This is a personal preference, you do what you feel comfortable with.

With right sides together, lay your 33" strip on top of your solid strip.  Now remember, the picture only shows three but you will be doing this with all 40 of your sets of strips.  Where the pen indicates, you will sew a 1/4" seam down the full length of your strip.  Don't worry about pinning, just line them up by hand and feed them through, focusing on keeping the pieces matching where you are sewing your seam.  If you get to the bottom of the piece and the one piece overhangs a little no worries, I made allowance for that in the cutting.  

Once you get to the bottom of the strip, simply feed the next set of strips in.  This is called Chain Stitching and it saves so much time and it is a lot of fun as well.  We also will be using it a ton in this tutorial so enjoy the practice.  Just keep feeding those sets of strips through your machine until you have sewn together all 40 sets. 

Okay, so you have finished sewing the 40 strips.  Now you will go ahead and cut the threads between them.  

Now to pressing.  This project has a lot of little squares put together and for that reason, I choose to press my seams open.  I found it really helped reduce bulk.  With that said, I know pressing is a very personal thing, so if you are not a fan of pressing seams open, press them whichever way you like.

And back to cutting.  I know, but I promise, this is the last of cutting.  You now have 40 beautiful 33" long sets of strips.  We are going to cut them down into 2 1/2" pieces.  You got this right.  Just like we did before. Line up 4 to 5 strips along the bottom.  (I know it is tempting here to stack up several pieces on top of each other but fight the urge). Cut a nice straight edge using your 0 line.  Then keep measuring up 2 1/2 inches slicing as you go.  In the end, you have (13) 2 1/2 x 4 1/2 sets of 2 patches with a little bit of leftover for wiggle room from each print.

Continue this process with all 40 of your sets.  You should have 520 little 2 patch rectangles.  Aren't they adorable.  I left mine in stacks like this and choose randomly.  I would suggest not playing with them much as they are cut after being sewn and if they are mixed up in a bag or thrown around to much the seams can start to come undone. 

STEP 3 -  CREATING BUILDING BLOCKS

Each of the blocks in this quilt are made up of smaller "building blocks".  We are going to start with what I call the opposite 4 patch block.  Now I have tried to really detail this process because not only does it create "building blocks," it goes over the basic building steps of piecing quilts that will be used over and over in this tutorial.  So here we go.  Start by grabbing 2 sets of your 2 patch rectangles. Align them so that the prints and solids are opposite.


Now lay your first piece over on to the other piece.  When I say lay, I don't mean pick up and possibly spin around and then lay.  I like to think that whatever two pieces I am going to be sewing have a hinge between them.  When it is laid out, you simply lift the top piece and "fold" it over onto the bottom piece without changing anything where the seam or "hinge" would be.  I know this sounds silly with this little piece but the rest of the tutorial is based on understanding this and it is really easy to mix up where your seams are being sewn if you don't keep an eye on it.  So with that being said, I tried to slightly alter the alignment on this picture to illustrate this point. 

Whenever you are aligning two pieces that have seams in the same spot, you always want to make sure those seams align perfectly.  Don't worry about how the edges line up as much.  The seam is the most important.  

So go ahead and pin your piece where you will be sewing your 1/4 inch seam ie where your "hinge" would be.  (Sorry, I just realized that after I picked this piece up to take a picture of it I turned it over when I pinned it, I hope that doesn't cause confusion.) 

We are going to be making 144 of these opposite 4 patch squares.  So go ahead and pin up a bunch (I did mine in groups of 50, 50, and 44 as that is how many pins I had.)  Now that you have a huge stack of pinned sets, you are going to stitch them.  Sew a 1/4" seam, making sure to pull out pins as you come to them.  Just keep feeding your pieces through, chain stitching a long line of opposite 4 patches.

After you're done with a group of four patches, go ahead and clip your threads between pieces.

Once again, press your seams open (or your preference) for your set of 4 patches.

Keep repeating this process until you have 144 Four Patch Opposite Squares.  Aren't they cute?

Now we are going to be making the Same Four Patch Squares.  I know, not a great name, but it is all I could come up with.  You will be making 96 of these 4 patches.  Align your first two pieces so that your prints are next to one another and your solids are also next to one another.  

Just like before, you are going to make sure your seam lines up.  Also, notice the difference on how your squares line up.  You know you are right if your prints are together and your solids are together.  Go ahead and pin at the seam first, and then along the edges.  Do this for your first batch of 50 or so till you run out of pins.  (I know, tons of pinning, but it doesn't take much brain power, feel free to multi-task while pinning.  I found it was a great thing to do while helping my son with his homework.)

Now start sewing your 1/4 inch seam, chain stitching your batch of 4 patches.  Remember to pull pins as you go along.  

Clip your threads between pieces and then press.  Repeat this process with your whole batch.

When you are finished, you should have 96 Same Four Patch Squares.  Way to go!!

You only need a few more building blocks and they are already made.  Pull out 24 of your 2 patch rectangles.  This is a great opportunity to set aside any duplicates you might still have.  

So now you have 16 extra 2 patch squares.  Set these aside for a future project. 

Now that the building blocks are made, you are ready to start making the blocks for the quilt.  The next steps will walk you through making block A, B, C, and sashing. 

STEP 4 - BLOCK A

You will be making 24 Block A's.  For each instruction, make sure you are doing it 24 times (unless otherwise noted).  It always saves time to do things in an assembly line.  Get 48 Opposite Four Patch Squares, (48) 2 1/2" x 4 1/2" solid rectangles, (48) 4 1/2" x 6 1/2" solid rectangles, and 24 printed 2 1/2" squares.  

This is the layout for the block.  Go ahead and sew your columns together and then your rows 24 times. 


STEP 5 - BLOCK B

You will be making 24 Block B's.  For each instruction make sure you are doing it 24 times (unless otherwise noted).  You know the drill about saving time.   Get all 96 of your  Same Four Patch Squares, 48 2 1/2" x 4 1/2" solid rectangles, 24 2 1/2" x 8 1/2" solid rectangles, and 24 printed 2 1/2" squares.

This is the layout for Block B.  (Sorry, I forgot to spread out the pieces to make it easier to tell  the pieces). Sew your columns together and then your rows 24 times.




STEP 6 - BLOCK C
You will be making 6 Block C's.  Yes that's right , you only have to make 6 of something!  Here is what you need to make your 6 Block C's.  24 of your Opposite Four Patch squares, 24 of your 2 patch rectangles, and  6 of the 2 1/2" squares.

Here is the layout for Block C. Sew your columns together and then your rows 6 times.



STEP 7 - SASHING
Okay, so now you're asking, why are we putting the sashing together before we put together what we are going to sash?  And the answer is, because when we get those big huge blocks together and you are so close to seeing your quilt complete, the last thing you are going to want to do is fiddle with sashing. So I like to do them early so they are ready when you are. Grab the remaining 72 Opposite Four Patch Squares, 24 of the solid 4 1//2" x 10 1/2" rectangles, and 48 of the 4 1/2" x 6 1/2" solid rectangles.  


So this is the layout of your sashing.   You will be making 24 sets of each layout.  Make sure that you have 24 sets where the top left hand corner of your four patch is a colored print and 24 sets where the top left hand corner of the four patch is your solid.  This is really easy to flip so pay close attention.  Sew your sashing.

Split your sashing's into 2 piles of 12.  Go ahead and set one pile aside, they are done.  The other pile of 12 we will be adding corner squares onto.  Here is the layout for the corner squares.  Grab the last of your opposite four patch squares.  This is where we finish up using your "building blocks".  

Make sure that your Corner Squares layout match these.  Once again, it is really easy to spin and block and then your chain will not quite link up.  Sew your corner blocks on.  

And there you have it, 12 Sashing's with corner blocks added.  Pat yourself on the back!  

STEP 8 - THE BIG BLOCKS
This is where you really get to see the quilt come together.  You will be making 6 "Big Blocks". For each  "Big Block" you will need 4 Block A, 4 Block B, and 1 Block C.  here is how they will be laid out.

Sew the rows together.  This is what your Row 1 looks like.  You should have 6 of them.

Now onto Row 2. This is what it should look like when finished.  You should have 6 of them.

And you guessed it, same concept for row 3.  This is what it should look like when finished.  Remember - 6 :)

Now that your Rows are all made lay them out and sew them together - 6 times :). 


For each Big Block you need 2 regular sashing's and 2 sashing's with corner blocks.  Here is the layout.  The regular sashing's are layed on the left and right hand side of your block and the sashing's with corners are added to the top and bottom of your block.  

We'll add the left and right hand regular sashing first.  

Here is what it should look like.  Super nice!!

Now you are ready to add the sashings with the corner blocks to the top and bottom of your block.  Make sure to pin lining up seams and sew 6 times.

And there you have it!  6 Big Blocks that have been sashed and are ready to be put into your quilt top.

STEP 9 - FINISHING THE QUILT
I totally had to rearrange my living room in order to lay out the six blocks for a picture.  You can see all the furniture on the side, tee hee hee.  Go ahead and lay out your 6 blocks in three rows of 2 blocks each.  You can spin your blocks as much as you like to get the look that is pleasing to your eye. Sew blocks into rows and then rows together.



And there you have it, your completed top!  Isn't it amazing.  Ya, I did a little dance in my living room at this point in time.  Go ahead, do your own dance, you deserve it!!

So now it is time to turn that finished quilt top into a finished Quilt ;)  Time to  Baste It, Quilt It, and Bind It!!!  Which is a whole lot in one little sentence.  If you are new to quilting, you can see my Finishing Your Quilt Series of video tutorials that will walk you through Basting, Quilting, and Binding step by step ;)

 I quilted this quilt on my little "Bernadette" the Bernette Bernina so don't be afraid.  It is possible to quilt this without a long arm!  (If you missed that, yes, I named my sewing machine Bernadette).  Use 10 of your extra solid jelly roll strips to do the binding.   



And you are done and have one Beautiful Braided Irish Chain quilt measuring 76 x 114.  Enjoy!!!  



I hope you have enjoyed this tutorial and if you make your own Braided Irish Chain Quilt I would love to see it!!  You can email me a picture at happyquiltingmelissa@gmail.com or add it to my flickr group here or post it to social media with #happyquiltingwithmc ;)  I can't wait to see your Braided Irish Chain Quilts!!!


Thanks for stopping by today and I hope you have a very Happy Quilting Day!!!
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