“Cozy Cabins,” a UFO Finished!

“Cozy Cabins,” designed by Lynn Lister and published by McCall’s Quilting magazine caught my eye in the fall of 2016, and I began making blocks. The darker, muted colors struck a chord with me because I have plenty of those types of fabrics in my aging stash. Click here to link to the McCall’s blog for October 7, 2016; you can download a free pattern for “Cozy Cabins.” Click here to read my blog post when I began this project.

I modified the pattern by increasing the cut size of the center black squares to 3 1/2″ and increasing the cut width of the surrounding strips to 2.” It was fun to coordinate colors/fabrics, and I managed to decrease my stash of scrap strips and fat quarters. Did you notice the black triangles in the corner block pictured below? Each of the four corners looks like this; the triangles are my solution to the not-quite-enough-strip-to-go-around-the-entire-block dilemma!

As you can imagine, the blocks were easy to assemble. I enjoyed sewing one or two at the end of a busy day. For me, simple sewing is a great way to unwind!

A black 4″ border handsomely frames the project, and I pieced together strips of binding leftover from other projects. I used an old gold quilting thread, knowing it would blend nicely with all the scrappy fabrics yet show up richly in the wide black border. I used a pantograph called “Happy Times” designed by Hermione Agee (Lorien Quilting/Urban Elementz). The backing is a brown calico, purchased cheaply, that I’ve had forever. I am happy to have found a way to use it!

Do you currently have a “simple sewing” project which helps you unwind?

Fat Quarter Challenge – November

Each month of 2016 I’ve challenged myself (and blog readers) to use Fat Quarters to make a project. I promised to show my quilt ideas by the 15th of each month, and I invite you to send pictures of your projects for subsequent blog posts. aby.quilts@gmail.com

I was inspired by Lynn Lister’s “Cozy Cabins” published by McCall’s Quilting magazine. Click here to see a picture. You can download an e-book which contains the pattern from the McCall’s blog (Friday Freebie, Oct. 7, 2016). The muted fabrics Lynn chose say “fall” to me, and I have plenty of those hues in my stash! I cut strips from these fat quarters as well as from stash yardage and scraps.


At daughter Trinity’s suggestion, I cut the center black squares 3 1/2″ and strips 2″ wide. This yields a 12 1/2″ unfinished block, so I can easily use my 12 1/2″ acrylic ruler to square up the blocks prior to assembling the quilt top. I plan to make 30 blocks total. I’m off to a great start with 18 on my design wall!


At first, I cut long strips and sewed successive rounds, cutting the strips to the correct length after sewing and pressing. But I found it saved time if I cut all the strips needed for one block and pinned them together as a “kit.” The strip lengths my blocks require are 3 1/2,” 6 1/2,” 9 1/2,” and 12 1/2.”


By scrutinizing Lynn’s quilt, Trinity and I noticed that darks, mediums, and lights were used. And blocks set side by side needed to contrast in value. In other words, since the block in the top left of the quilt has a dark outer round, the adjacent blocks need to have a light or bright outer round. Noticing the value placement guided my planning; I need 15 blocks with a dark outer strips and 15 blocks with light or bright outer strips.

Would you like to Quilt Along, making “Cozy Cabins” blocks this month? Perhaps you’d like to change the size or the color palette.