Mexico Mini

Here's my mini version of my Mexico pattern.  I made it to show how this pattern looks made with a scrappy theme, rather than the more modern graphic look of just four fabrics. 

I used a pack of 10" squares of Cotton and Steel fabric, dividing them into four color groupings of navy, aqua, mustard, and pink.

Finished size is 16"x18.5"

Moda Building Blocks Complete!!

In a sweet twist of irony, this king sized quilt has ended up on my daughter's tiny toddler bed!  I wanted it large enough to hang almost to the floor on a queen size bed, so I added that row of zigzags on the left hand side.  And then one morning I came into my girlie's room and found her cuddled up underneath this behemoth!  She proclaims she loves it, and since it's not needed elsewhere, it can stay there for now! 

I used the Moda Modern Building Blocks pattern for this quilt.  Honestly, I enjoyed every minute of putting these blocks together! 

I cobbled together four pieces of voile that I had on hand for the back.  I knew I was going to free motion quilt this one, and I've found that using voile on the back of quilts finished in this method accomplishes two things:  it makes it extra drapey soft, and also makes it glide through your machine like butter.  I was dreading quilting this thing, but I don't think I even broke a sweat, because voile is just that much lighter and smoother than cotton.

If you're apprehensive of voile, I dare you to try it!  Hawthorne Threads has a huge selection of voiles, just go to their website and type 'voile' into the search box.  Note:  Lawn is basically identical to voile, but it seems that the lawns are all 45" wide and the voiles are 56".  I like the extra width for those slightly bigger quilts.

So what else can I say about this quilt?  That block in the second photo is my favorite.  The block in the last photo has the tiniest pieces - the block is only 6 inches.

The whole thing finished feels a bit too sweet and girly for me.  There's just a lot of peachy pinks in there.  It's not going anywhere though, partly because I put so much time into it that nobody would ever want to pay the price I'd have to charge!

Scrappy Nine Patch and Some Scrap Management

Can you see the patches of dark and light in this quilt?  I sewed together alternating 9 patches of darks and lights (with medium values thrown in helter skelter).  I just used my stack of 2.5" squares from my scrap drawer.

I really do like the subtle pattern that this brings to a scrappy square quilt.  It also is easier to assemble a quilt full of squares when you make them into 9 patches first.

I used poly batting and hand quilted this one, making it puffier and so very soft.

I really want to keep this one, but sadly we have enough of this baby size kicking around the house...

The back and binding are favorite prints that I tricked myself into using by telling myself that I'd keep this one:)  Once the quilt is done, I'm usually okay with parting with those favorites because there's always new favorites appearing!

I thought you might be interested in how I've been cutting up my scraps the last year or so.  I still have my baskets overflowing with various sizes, divided by color.

What I've found for myself though is that I like making simple quilts from precut squares or strips, so more and more lately I've been taking my scraps from any project and quickly cutting the leftovers into a few different sizes and stacking them in my drawer.  That's where the 2.5" squares for this quilt came from.

Here's how I divide up my scraps: 

Any piece that is width of fabric, or half width of fabric (the lenth of a fat quarter - 22") I cut these into 2.5" widths and pile them in this little drawer that you see above.  I've found that I love making Scrappy Trip Quilts, and these strips are perfect for that.  I also throw my leftover binding strips in here.  Although they aren't usually the right length, they are 2.5" wide, so we'll sew something with them eventually.

Next, I cut 5" squares.  I like 5 inches because they are the size of charm packs, so they are very versatile and there are lots of patterns written for 5" squares. 

Finally from the smaller pieces I cut 2.5" squares. 

Here's my drawer of squares.  I really like having these squares cut and stacked, they make me feel happy!

Making a Scrappy Mexico Quilt {and a notice if you bought the pattern before March 12, 2015}

Today I want to show you how simple and fun it is to make this pattern in a scrappy manner.  But first of all, if you have purchased the pattern already, please read the next paragraph!

I realized today that one step needs clarification.  Under Piecing, Step 3., it tell you to pair your blocks into sets.  The first pairing is

6 pairs of Color #1 and Color #2

Here's what it should say;

6 Pairs of Color #1 and Color #2 (3 of the Color #2 should be the ones marked diagonally bottom left to top right, and 3 should be the ones marked top left to bottom right


 On to making a scrappy version of this quilt!  So if you've already purchased the pattern, you will notice that it is divided into four colors, Colors #1-#4.  In a non scrappy version, if the chart says to cut four of Color #1, then you will cut four all of the same fabric. 

In the scrappy version, you will use each Color # as a color family, rather than one fabric.

In my photo just above, Color #1 is Navy Blues.  As many rectangles as the chart says to cut of that color, that's how many different fabrics I chose for that color family.  I then cut one rectangle for each fabric.

Thinking in color families this way ensures that you will keep the overall design intact. 

This version you see here is the mini quilt size which I decided to include in the pattern because they are just so cute!