Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Part 2: HST String Quilt Tutorial

Now that you have completed your HST Blocks we can move on to assembling the design.  To view Part 1:  HST String Block Tutorial, please see last Tuesday's Post HERE]

Materials Needed to complete quilt:
5/8 yard Bright print  for binding
1 1/2 yards  Coordinating Print for Border
2 yards Backing fabric for this project

Cutting mat, Ruler, & Rotary cutter
Sewing machine, thread
Iron & starch spray
Batting of your choice

8- 2 1/2" X WOF strips for binding from "Bright Print" or another totally unrelated fabric
5- 4 1/4" X 50" strips for Border from coordinating fabric that is not your "Bright Print" and not your Coordinating Solid, this can be a fabric that was used in scrap materials in the String block-making.  This fabric will be cut parallel to the salvage.
If you are cutting borders from yardage, measure along the salvage 25", then fold the fabric so the measurement will equal 50" when trimmed.  Use your folded salvage as your constant in measuring because the outside salvage can vary in width, although most are constant, it is better not to take the chance. From the 1 1/2 yards listed you will have some scrap fabric as it is hard to describe the exact measurement of what is required.

Take the 50" length fabric fold in half and then fold in half again, making sure the folded salvage side lines up exactly to keep the fabric straight.  It may help to iron it in place to make sure you have a straight finish cut.  Trim off the salvage edge first, then measure out a 8 1/2" cut, subcutting into 4 1/4" cuts for the final border.  You want to start from the salvage edge and work towards the folded salvage so you can keep the largest piece of fabric for future projects!
Assembling the Quilt Top:
1.  Pick a layout or create your own.  Once you have the HST Strings on your design wall you can figure out if you need to make any modifications to ironing the seams one way or another.  For some, they prefer to just Iron them open to keep from the guesswork.

2.  Sew your blocks in rows, then sewing the rows together.
Choose your design, then start joining 2 blocks at a time

Connect each 2-block segment together to form rows

Once you have all your rows together, it is time to sew your rows into 2-row segments

The other benefit to assembling two rows at a time in the design I have chosen is that it would be easy to flip the direction of  the zigs or the zags or whatever design you have chosen

Next you connect the 2-row-segments together

In this particular quilt I only have 6 total rows, so this is the completed center measures 32.5" X 48.5"

Here is where each quilt will vary.  As I shared yesterday you have several ways you can arrange your blocks.  Lets look at some layout ideas for the whole quilt.
9 options for arranging your HST String Blocks, there are more!
3.  Now you have a completed Inner Quilt top.  Some choose to cut their Border strips lengthwise to get a seamless border, I just happen to be one of those persons.  There is of course some pros and cons to this method; you will want to watch that the pieces do not stretch or ripple when adding to the main quilt top.  You may of course choose to cut your border fabric perpendicular to the salvages or decide to skip the borders altogether!
Finish quilt top measuring 40" X 56" for toddler bed or crib quilt
Finishing the Quilt:
1.  If you have not already assembled your backing, this is the time to do so.  There is of course several methods to this process, just be sure that your backing is 2 inches larger than your Quilt top on all sides.  Also, check out Craftsy's free class on Creative Quilt Backs!

2.  Layer a sandwich of:  Quilt top, batting and  then backing fabric on the bottom with wrong side facing down, towards the batting.  

3.  Baste using traditional thread basting, pins or spray basting.  There are several tutorials out there so I will not cover that today. Check out: Crazy Mom Quilts (Pin Baste), or Stitch in Color (Spray basting) for more information.

4.  Once you have basted the three layers together it is time to choose your quilting process, please consider checking out the Free Motion Quilting Project out, which has literally hundreds of different stitches.  She also has excellent tutorials via video that has been posted to Youtube.

5.  Once you have the Top stitching complete, it is time to trim your quilt and add the binding.
(Check out: Carolina Fair Designs,  Crazy Mom QuiltsCotton Creek Sewing, or Jaybird Quilts for tutorials on Binding prep)

I made this quilt top as part of my "A Scrapful Life" Scrap challenge.  I want to make projects using my scraps and stash, learning to make do with what I already have on hand.  If you would like to see my February post, look HERE.  I have a link up each month and Flickr group:  A Scrapful Life, if you would like to join me, but no pressure, its just a change in mindset for me.


I love to hear from my readers!