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2021 CQC MYSTERY QUILT: LOG CABIN FEVER

by Dana Jones

Warm up your safer-at-home time by making CQC’s 2021 mystery quilt, “Log Cabin Fever,” which will finish at 70” x 70”. Since this quilt is designed using the theme of this year’s Quilt-a-Fair show, you’ll have your entry ready to go before you know it.
You fabric choices will make this quilt uniquely yours. You may choose fabrics from a collection as I did for a soothing feel. You may want to use brights to liven things up. This quilt will be lovely in batiks and have a modern edge in solids. You can make your version scrappy so long as you pay attention to the value of your fabrics. The stronger contrasts you have between light and dark fabrics, the more your piecing will shine.

 

CLUE 4

This month, you’ll complete your quilt top. In addition to the sections you’ve already pieced, you’ll be adding three 1” borders and the final border. As indicated in Clue 1, you can make the final border any width you wish. Mine is 8” for two reasons: I wanted to use a border print that was in my stash and the 8” border enhanced, not overwhelmed the rest of the quilt top. A tone-on-tone or smaller print border could work as a wider border. The choice is yours.


Cutting Borders 1 and 2

Many of us are used to measuring through the center of the quilt top horizontally and then vertically to determine the length of borders. This technique is recommended for Borders 3 and 4 of this quilt but should not be used for Borders 1 and 2. Because this is a medallion quilt, you need to cut Borders 1 and 2 the lengths indicated here. The finished borders will be 1” wide so you can cut them 1½” wide. When working with such narrow borders, I prefer to cut them a bit wider and trim. That is how I’m calling out the cutting and piecing here. 


From Fabric N, cut:

  • 2 strips 2” x 16½”

  • 2 strips 2” x 18½”

  • 2 strips 2” x 42½”

  • 2 strips 2” x 44½”

Set aside the rest of Fabric N for use in Border 3.


Joining Borders 1 and 2, Flying Geese Strips, and Nine-Patch Strips

Before you begin joining the parts of this quilt top, I recommend following Figure 1 to lay them out on a design wall, table top or other surface if possible. It will streamline your searching for the next piece to add.


To add Border 1, refer to Figure 1 then join the 2” x 16½” Fabric N strips to the sides of the joined log cabin blocks. Press the seams toward Border 1.


Join the 2” x 18½” Fabric N strips to the top and bottom of the joined log cabin blocks. Press the seams toward Border 1.

Trim the Border 1 width to 1¼” all around.


Join an 18½” long Fabric H/I flying geese strip to each side of the quilt center. Be sure to note the direction the flying geese are pointing in Figure 1. Press the seam toward Border 1.


Join one of the 24½” Fabric H/I flying geese strips to the top of the quilt center and the other one to the bottom, again noting the direction the points are facing. The geese should be flying around the quilt center in one direction. Press the seams toward Border 1.


Join one of the 24½” nine-patch strips to each side of the quilt center. Referring to Figure 1, note the placement of the light and dark squares within the nine-patch blocks. Proper placement will create a continuous checkerboard horizontally and vertically around the quilt center.


Join one of the 36½” nine-patch strips to the top of the quilt center and one to the bottom, again noting the placement of the light and dark squares of the nine-patch blocks.


Join one of the 36½” Fabric L/C flying geese strips to each side of the quilt center, noting the direction the flying geese are pointing in Figure 1.


Join one of the 42½” Fabric L/C flying geese strips to the top of the quilt center and the other one to the bottom, noting the direction the flying geese are pointing in Figure 1.


To add Border 2, join a 42½” Fabric N border strip to each side of the quilt center. Press the seams toward Border 2. Press the seams toward Border 2.


Join one of the 44½” Fabric N border strips to the top of the quilt center and one to the bottom. 


Trim the Border 2 width to 1¼” all around.


Put your quilt center on a design wall, table or floor. Check that the geese nearest the center of the quilt top are flying in the same direction and those further out are flying in the opposite direction. Next be sure the checkerboard created with the nine-patch strips has consistently alternating dark and light squares horizontally and vertically. If you see problems, decide now if you will correct them or are okay with your variation.


Completing the Quilt Top

Join a 44½” strip of pinwheel blocks to each side of the quilt center. Press the seams toward Border 2.


Join one of the 52½” strips of pinwheel blocks to the top of the quilt center and the other one to the bottom. Press the seams toward Border 2.


To add Border 3, measure the length of the quilt top vertically through the center. Do not measure on the edges as there may be some stretch there. Cut two Fabric N strips that measurement x 2”. Attach these strips to the sides of the quilt top. Press the seams toward Border 3. Measure the width of the quilt top horizontally through the center, including the side borders just added. Cut two Fabric N strips that measurement x 2”. Attach one of these strips to the top of the quilt top and the other one to the bottom. Press the seams toward Border 3.

Continued on page 9

Trim the Border 3 width to 1¼” all around.


To add your final border — Border 4 — decide how wide you will make it then measure the depth of the quilt top vertically through the center. Cut two Fabric O strips that measurement x the width of border you’ve chosen. (My final border is 8” wide.) Attach these strips to the sides of the quilt center. Press the seams toward Border 4.


Measure the width of the quilt top horizontally through the center, including the side borders just added. Cut two Fabric O strips that measurement x the width of border you’ve chosen. Attach one of these strips to the top of the quilt center and the other one to the bottom. Press the seams toward Border 4.


Your “Log Cabin Fever” quilt top is complete. All that’s left is quilting it or having it quilted then binding. I hope you’ve enjoyed this mystery-quilt journey, and I hope you will submit your creation for display at this year’s Quilt-a-Fair Quilt Show in September. I especially hope your quilt will remind you of stress-free quilting time that countered the cabin fever that has faced us during a time of safer at home.

 

CLUE 3

It’s time to begin putting our quilt together so get out all the pieces you’ve created.

Joining Log Cabin Blocks

Layout your four log cabin blocks as shown in Figure 1. Join the top two blocks then join the bottom two blocks. Join the top to the bottom. The resulting square should measure 16½” x 16½”.


Joining Flying Geese Units
Working with the 56 H/I flying geese units:


  • Join 14 units with all of the points facing the same direction. Repeat to make two strips of 14 units each as shown in Figure 2. Each strip should measure 3½” x 21½”.

  • Join 2 units with the points facing the same direction. Repeat to make two 3½” x 3½” segments of two flying geese each as shown in Figure 3.

  • Join one of the 3½” x 3½” segments to one end of each of the 14-unit strips with points oriented as shown in Figure 4. Each strip should now measure 3½” x 24½”.

  • Join 12 units with all of the points facing in the same direction. Repeat to make two strips of 12 units each as shown in Figure 5. Each strip should measure 3½” x 18½”.

Working with the 104 L/C flying geese units:

  • Join 26 units with all of the points facing the same direction as shown in Figure 6. Repeat to make two strips of 26 units each. Each strip should measure 3½” x 39½”.

  • Join 2 units with the points facing the same direction. Repeat to make two 3½” x 3½” segments of two flying geese each as shown in Figure 7.

  • Join one of the 3½” x 3½” segments to one end of each of the 26-unit strips with points oriented as shown in Figure 8. Each strip should now measure 3½” x 42½”.

  • Join 24 units with all of the points facing in the same direction. Repeat to make two strips of 24 units each as shown in Figure 9. Each strip should measure 3½” x 36½”.

Joining Nine-Patch Blocks

  • Join two nine-patch blocks with Fabric K (light) centers and two nine-patch blocks with Fabric J (dark) centers alternating as shown in Figure 10. Repeat to make two strips of four nine-patch blocks each. Each strip should measure 6½” x 24½”.

  • Join three nine-patch blocks with Fabric K (light) centers and three nine-patch blocks with Fabric J (dark) centers alternating as shown in Figure 11. Repeat to make two strips of six nine-patch blocks each. Each strip should measure 6½” x 36½”.

Joining Pinwheel Blocks

  • Join 13 pinwheel blocks as shown in Figure 12. Repeat to make two 13-pinwheel strips. These strips should measure 4½” x 52½”. In the same way, join 11 pinwheel blocks. Repeat to make two 11-pinwheel strips. These strips should measure 4½” x 44½”.

You have completed Clue 3. Your log cabin is almost built, your geese are in formation and ready to fly, your nine-patch blocks have become extended checkerboards, and your pinwheels are set to spin. They will all come together next month to chase away any remnants of log cabin fever.








 

CLUE 2

Cutting for Nine-Patch Blocks

I recommend labeling each stack of pieces as you cut them.

Fabric J (dark): Cut 6 strips 2½” x 40”

Fabric K (light): Cut 6 strips 2½” x 40”


Making Nine-Patch Blocks

Referring to Figure 1, join the long edges of a Fabric J strip to each side of a Fabric K strip. Press the seams toward Fabric J (dark). The joined strips should be 6½” wide. Repeat to make three strip sets.

Referring to Figure 2, join the long edges of a Fabric K strip to each side of a Fabric J strip. Press the seams toward Fabric J (dark). The joined strips should be 6½” wide. Repeat to make three strip sets.

Referring to Figure 3, cut 2½” segments from the six strip sets. Stack the 30 segments with Fabric J (dark) centers together, then stack the 30 segments with Fabric K (light) centers together.

Referring to Figure 4, arrange two segments with Fabric J (dark) centers and one segment with a Fabric K (light) center as shown. Join to make one nine-patch block with a Fabric K (light) center. Repeat to make a total of 10 nine-patch blocks with Fabric K (light) centers. These should measure 6½” x 6½”.

Referring to Figure 5, arrange two segments with Fabric K (light) centers and 1 segment with a Fabric J (dark) center as shown. Join to make one nine-patch block with a Fabric J (dark) center. Repeat to make a total of 10 nine-patch blocks with Fabric J (dark) centers. These should measure 6½” x 6½”.

Cutting for Pinwheel Blocks

The following cutting directions are for making half-square triangles (HSTs) using the method described here. If you choose to use another method, your cutting will be different. Before cutting these pieces, decide how you will make your HSTs and cut accordingly. I recommend labeling each stack of pieces as you cut them.

Fabric G (light): Cut 96 2⅞” x 2⅞” squares

Fabric M (dark): Cut 96 2⅞” x 2⅞” squares


Making Pinwheel Blocks

You will make 192 2” half-square triangles (HSTs) as the first step toward making 48 4” pinwheels.

Referring to Figure 6, place a Fabric G (light) square on a Fabric M (dark) square right sides together. Draw a diagonal line as shown. Pin. Stitch ¼” on either side of this line. Cut on the drawn line. Press seam toward Fabric M (dark) to make two HSTs. They should measure 2½” x 2½”. Repeat with the remaining Fabric G and Fabric M squares to make a total of 192 HSTs.

Referring to Figure 7, arrange two HSTs as shown. Join. Press the seam toward Fabric M (dark). Repeat with remaining HSTs for 96 sets of two HSTs each. These should measure 4½” x 2½”.

Referring to Figure 8, arrange two of these units as shown to form a pinwheel. Join. On the back side, unstitch the portion of the seam that is in the seam allowance. With your fingers, work the seams toward the darker fabric as shown until a small pinwheel forms in the center of the back of the block. Press seams as shown. The pinwheel should measure 4½” x 4½”. Repeat to make a total of 48 pinwheel blocks.


You’ve completed Clue 2. In Clue 3, we’ll begin to put our quilt together. 

 

CLUE 1

Fabric Selection

I used 15 fabrics for my “Log Cabin Fever,” not including the binding and backing. I used two fabrics in two places each and chose a border fabric not used elsewhere in the quilt. You may wish to make the same choices, repeat more fabrics, repeat no fabrics or select a variety of scrappy pieces in similar colors to replace any or all of the fabrics. Just be sure to pay attention to the use of lights and darks as indicated.

If using 15 fabrics is daunting, see the CQC website — www.coloradoquiltingcouncil.com — to see how to work with just nine fabrics. This will change the amount of each fabric you will need, so you will need to make this decision before selecting or buying your fabric.

I’m sharing my fabrics here. Note where you need to select lights and darks. Yardages are based on having 40 inches of useable fabric width. I used a border print for my outside border because that’s what was in my stash. Any fabric can be used. The 8” border width is based on the width of the border print I used. You may choose to make it wider or narrower and may want to wait until you’ve pieced the center of the quilt to make this decision. Yardage for cutting 8” borders the length and width of fabric are given so you can choose which way you want to cut them. Cutting the width of fabric will require some piecing. There will be no piecing of borders cut lengthwise. The final border is cut lengthwise.


Fabric A: ⅛ yard (fat or regular) or scrap 6” x 6”

Fabric B (pale green rosebud; dark): ⅛ yard (fat or regular)

Fabric C (dark green rosebud; dark): ½ yard*

Fabric D (dark green; dark): ⅛ yard (fat or regular)

Fabric E (peach flower; light): ⅛ yard (fat or regular)

Fabric F (peach check; light): ⅛ yard (fat or regular)

Fabric G (peach dot; light): ⅞ yard

Fabric H (pale green/beige flower; light): ⅜ yard**

Fabric I (maroon rosebud; dark): ½ yard**

Fabric J (green/red check; dark): ½ yard

Fabric K (pale green dot; light): ½ yard

Fabric L (pale green flower; light): ½ yard**

Fabric M (maroon berry; dark): ¾ yard

Fabric N (maroon; dark): 1¼ yards (cut across the width of fabric and seamed) or 1⅝ yard (cut lengthwise, no seams)

Fabric O (maroon rose border print):
8” border: 2 yards

Backing: 4⅝ yards

Binding: ¾ yards


* ⅜ yard of this amount is for making flying geese units. This yardage is based on making four flying geese units at a time as per directions that follow. If you choose to make the flying geese by another method, you may need more fabric.

** These yardages are based on making flying geese units four at a time as per directions that follow.


Cutting for Log Cabin Blocks

I recommend labeling each stack of pieces as you cut them.

Fabric A: Cut four 2½” x 2½” squares. I fussy cut these pieces. See the center of the log cabin block in Figure 1.

Fabric B (dark): Cut four rectangles 1½” x 2½” and four rectangles 1½” x 3½”.

Fabric C (dark): Cut four rectangles 1½” x 4½” and four rectangles 1½” x 5½”. Set aside the remainder of Fabric C for use in making flying geese units later in this clue.

Fabric D (dark): Cut four rectangles 1½” x 6½” and four rectangles 1½” x 7½”.

Fabric E (light): Cut four rectangles 1½” x 3½” and four rectangles 1½” x 4½”.

Fabric F (light): Cut four rectangles 1½” x 5½” and four rectangles 1½” x 6½”.

Fabric G (light): Cut four rectangles 1½” x 7½” and four rectangless 1½” x 8½”. Set aside the remainder of Fabric G for use in a future clue.


Making Log Cabin Blocks

Make a log cabin block as follows, referring to Figure 1. Press all seams toward the most recently added piece.

  • Join a 1½” x 2½” Fabric B rectangle to the top of a 2½” x 2½” Fabric A square.

  • Join a 1½” x 3½” Fabric B rectangle to the right side of the unit just pieced.

  • Continue adding pieces around the center square in the following order:

    • Add a 1½” x 3½” Fabric E rectangle.

    • Add a 1½” x 4½” Fabric E rectangle.

    • Add a 1½” x 4½” Fabric C rectangle.

    • Add a 1½” x 5½” Fabric C rectangle.

    • Add a 1½” x 5½” Fabric F rectangle.

    • Add a 1½” x 6½” Fabric F rectangle.

    • Add a 1½” x 6½” Fabric D rectangle.

    • Add a 1½” x 7½” Fabric D rectangle.

    • Add a 1½” x 7½” Fabric G rectangle.

    • Add a 1½” x 8½” Fabric G rectangle to complete one log cabin block. The block should measure 8½” x 8 ½”.


Repeat to make four log cabin blocks.


Cutting for Flying Geese Units

I recommend labeling each stack of pieces as you cut them. Cutting is based on making four flying geese units at a time as per directions that follow. There are many ways to make flying geese. Most quilters have their favorite method. I prefer to paper piece them, and I’m okay that to do so requires more fabric than the method outlined here. If you choose to make them by a different method than explained here, you may need more fabric. You will make 56 flying geese units in Fabrics H and I and 104 flying geese units in Fabrics L and C. In both cases, the darker fabric is in the center of the units.

The flying geese units will be 3” x 1½” in the finished quilt, which means the units you make here will measure 3½” x 2”, allowing for quarter inch seams.


Fabric H (light): Cut 56 2⅜” x 2⅜” squares

Fabric I (dark): Cut 14 4¼” x 4¼” squares

Fabric L (light): Cut 104 2⅜” x 2⅜” squares

Fabric C (dark): Cut 26 4¼” x 4¼” square

Making Flying Geese Units

Draw a diagonal line from corner to corner on the wrong side of four Fabric H 2⅜” x 2⅜” squares. Lay two of these squares on opposite corners of a Fabric I 4¼” x 4¼” square, right sides together, as shown in Figure 2. Align the diagonal lines, noting there will be an overlap in the center.


Sew a scant ¼” seam on each side of the diagonal line (Figure 3). Cut along the diagonal line (Figure 4).


Press the Fabric H (light) triangles away from the larger Fabric I (dark) triangle (Figure 5). Right sides together, place a Fabric H 2⅜” x 2⅜” square onto the Fabric I (dark) triangle as shown in Figure 6. Note the diagonal line runs from the center to the outside corner.


Sew a scant  ¼” seam on each side of the diagonal line (Figure 7). Cut along the diagonal line (Figure 8).


Press the just added Fabric H (light) triangles out (Figure 9). Align the 45-degree angle on a ruler with the angle of the center of the flying geese unit. Trim the units to 3½” x 2” to make four flying geese units. Repeat to make 56 Fabric H/I flying geese units (Figure 11).


In the same way, make four flying geese units with Fabrics L (light) and C (dark). Repeat to make 104 Fabric L/C flying geese units (Figure 12).


That’s all for Clue 1. Step back and admire your work. Set your log cabin blocks aside and don’t let your geese fly the coop. You’ll get them into formation in a future clue. See the April CQC newsletter for Clue 2.

 

15 Fabrics Too Many?

Make the CQC 2021 Mystery Quilt With Just 9 Fabrics

by Dana Jones


I used 15 fabrics for my version of the 2021 CQC mystery quilt, “Log Cabin Fever.” If you’re a scrappy quilter, that may seem like nothing but others may find 15 fabrics daunting. So here are alternative yardages and tips for using just nine fabrics. 


Yardages below are based on having 40 inches of useable fabric width. I used a border print for my outside border because that’s what was in my stash. Any fabric can be used. The 8” border width is based on the width of the border print I used. You may choose to make it wider or narrower and may want to wait until you’ve pieced the center of the quilt to make this decision. Yardage for cutting 8” borders the length and width of fabric are given so you can choose which way you want to cut them. Cutting the width of fabric will require some piecing. There will be no piecing of borders cut lengthwise. The final border is cut lengthwise.


Fabric A: ⅛ yard (fat or regular) or scrap 6” x 6”

Fabric B (pale green rosebud; dark):¾ yard

Fabric C (dark green rosebud; dark): 1¼ yard*

Fabric D (dark green tone on tone; dark): ⅛ yard (fat or regular)

Fabric E (peach flower; light): ⅞ yard

Fabric F (peach check; light):⅝ yard

Fabric G (peach dot; light): ⅞ yard

Fabric H (maroon tone on tone; dark to medium): 1¼ yard (cut across the width of fabric and seamed) or 1⅝ yard (cut lengthwise, no seams)

Fabric I (maroon rose border print): 8” border: 2 yards

Backing: 4⅝ yards

Binding: ¾ yards


When following the mystery quilt as patterned in the CQC monthly newsletters beginning in the March 2021 issue, make the following changes: 

  • When Fabric C is called for in making flying geese, use Fabric B.

  • When Fabrics A, B, and D-G are called for, used the fabrics as they are called for in the 15-fabric version.

  • When Fabric H is called for, use Fabric E.

  • When Fabric I is called for, use Fabric B.

  • When Fabric J is called for, use Fabric C.

  • When Fabric K is called for, use Fabric F.

  • When Fabric L is called for, use Fabric E.

  • When Fabric M is called for, use Fabric C.

  • When Fabric N is called for, use Fabric H.