Thursday, October 22, 2009

Scrap Buster Contest Entry--Tiny Quiet Quilt

(click image for a closer view!)

This little I-spy quilt project is a quiet and easy-to-carry matching game for my grand-kids. It contains two blocks each of 25 different print fabrics. It's only 9 1/2" by 11" and is made entirely of scraps, each block 3/4" square. Admittedly, I didn't use a great quantity of scraps, but I did use many different scraps!

'Scraps' around here might mean some very small bits. My example is my great-grandma, whose box of quilt scraps has gone through 4 generations and now resides at my house. She saved some pretty small bits! Some of my own (bigger!) scraps were just right to make the two 1- 1/4" squares needed. It was fun to view scrap fabrics with a different eye--many prints included small images that lend themselves to the project! Read on for directions.

1. Each little block is fussy-cut (cut out individually). Use your exact-o knife to make a little 3/4" square hole, centered in a 1- 1/4" square of card stock. This allows for 1/4" seam allowances. Use the window to center the motif, and use a pencil to mark the cutting lines around the square. Make 50 squares, 2 each of 25 different objects.
(Note: make several of these card stock squares and trade them out, as the pressure of your marking pencil wears away the card stock as you work. A sharp, but rather soft standard pencil works best--mechanical pencils are sharpest, but they tend to drag the fabric and distort the shape.)

2. Rotary cut 1 -1/2" strips of plain fabrics for the alternating squares, and cut them into 1- 1/2" squares. You will need 49 plain squares.
(Note: The smaller the cut pieces are, the more vital accurate seams become. Hand cut pieces are never as accurate as rotary cut pieces, so it's a good idea to use the more exact plain squares as a gauge for accuracy as you stitch.)

3. Deal out all the prepared pieces in 11 rows of 9 squares. Use a small rotary mat, so you can move it around as needed.

4. Stitch the pieces together into rows using careful 1/4"seam allowances, working with two rows at a time so you can chain the pieces through the sewing machine. Seam allowances are trimmed to 1/8" to avoid bulk, and pressed to the side

5.Next, the assembled rows are stitched together, and seam allowances trimmed and pressed to the side. Add two scrap borders, 1/2" and 1" wide, press, and cut out the back, and a piece of scrap flannel for batting--both the same size as the front.

Rather than use binding, I piped the outer edges using pink vintage piping from my mom's fabric-and-trim stash:

6. Layer the quilt back, right sides up, on the flannel 'batting' and pin around edges to avoid shifting. Place the piping with raw edges along the raw edges of the backing and batting, and stitch with a zipper foot along the stitching line of the piping. To start and stop, fold the ends of the piping into the seam allowance.

7. Layer the front and back with right sides together and pin. Stitch around the edges with your zipper foot, using the previous stitching line as a guide. Leave a 3-4" gap where you start and stop, to allow for turning. Trim corners, turn, and blind stitch the opening closed.

8. Machine quilt each seam line to add texture and interest. Have fun with your scraps--if your mom didn't start a collection, start yours now!


  1. I love this idea - so perfect for the little ones! And I love love love your header. :)

  2. I found you from Sew Mama Sew. That is the cutest quilt / game ever. So creative!

  3. I just love this idea! Found this from the Sew Mama Sew site.

  4. Very cute!

    I'm jealous of your 4 generation old box of quilt scraps.. there must be some great ones in there!

  5. I love this project! I linked to it on my roundup of favorite scrap buster projects . . . and it might be a bit too exact for me, so I'm thinking of passing it along to my quilt-shop-owning MIL. :>) But I really appreciate your helpful tips (switching out the templates, for one) - I might have to give this a try. Thanks for sharing!


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