I have several additional pictures of the quilt designing process which reveal an unexpected discovery and illustrate tips for making string-pieced quilts.
After making the central patchwork block, I discovered that I really like the block. The black print squares not only make the colors of the narrow strips “pop,” they add playfulness to the design that a solid black fabric could not. I think an entire quilt of these blocks would be very striking.
Tip #1: It was immeasurably helpful to place the foundation pieced strips on the design wall as I made them. I aimed to balance colors all around the quilt.
Tip #2: You can see from the photo below that I didn’t foundation piece ALL the strip pieced units. Instead, I sewed several of my longer strips together, and, after pressing, I cross-cut them to the desired width. Most of the time, the strip sets were long enough for 4 units which meant I could place one of the cross-cut pieces on each of the four sides of the quilt.
Tip #3: After adding each strip-pieced border, I stay-stitched all around the quilt. Stitching 1/8″ away from the edges stabilized the seams, preventing them from popping open during handling as I added the succeeding borders. Turning the quilt wrong side up during the stay-stitching process ensured that all the seam allowances remained flat in the direction they were pressed.
So, tell me, if you made “Scrap Vortex,” who would you make it for? I’ll choose a winner among the blog commenters on May 27 and send her a copy of the magazine.