A particularly keen group of beginners was already thinking about their next project toward the end of the Jacob’s Ladder class that taught them basic skills: choosing fabric, rotary cutting, strip piecing, four-patch units, half-square triangles, squaring up, sewing blocks, assembling the top with borders, basting, quilting and binding.
Beyond those essential skills, what could I teach them?
- they already know four-patch and 1/2 square triangle. What are the next most common units? probably Flying Geese and 1/4 Square triangles
- beyond basic quilt top construction? add sashing strips, perhaps with cornerstones?
- maybe set blocks on-point with setting triangles?
- how about a basic “sew and flip” construction method for some of the units to add to their patchwork toolbox?
- how about adding some extras to help them learn to personalize their fabric choices?
With those variables, I designed Beyond Beginners in three basic sizes. Sarah’s Choice blocks use flying geese; Star of Hope requires 1/4 square triangles.
Add sashing strips with sew and flip corners at the ends that make secondary stars when combined with cornerstones. Put it all together in an on-point setting.
An afternoon spent playing with options in EQ7 gave me some strikingly different options for three sizes: a wall hanging; twin/sofa quilt; and full size/queen coverlet. Students chose their quilt sizes; and decided whether to use a stripe, contrast or background fabric for the sashing strip.
We all had fun exploring the design options based on elements of each of the sketches: you’d have to look very carefully to realize the basic pattern is the same for each of the quilts!