The Midsummer Sampler Finishing Tutorial...
To make 61" square quilt you will need...
8 sampler blocks
17 Folk Flower filler blocks
1½ yds of cream fabric
52 2½" x 4½" various print pieces for the 'bunting'
4 2½" print squares for the cornerstones
69” square of cotton batting
4 yds backing fabric
½ yd of binding fabric
Please read through the pattern before you begin, assuming a ¼” seam allowance and a fabric width (WOF) of 42”.
1. From the cream fabric cut 6 3" x WOF strips for the outer border and 5 2" x WOF strips for the inner border. Finally, cut 7 2½" x WOF strips and subcut 104 2½" squares.
2. From the binding fabric cut 6 2½” strips.
Piecing the Bunting units..
Our bunting is constructed from classic Flying Goose blocks. We will be using the 'snowball' technique that we learned in our first block, the Cakestand. To refresh your memory, start by marking a diagonal line on the back of a square of fabric; pin it, right sides together, to a corner of the base fabric; stitch on the line and then press as directed in the pattern...
3. Snowball one end of a 2½" x 4½” print piece with a 2½" cream square, but instead of flipping ‘open’, turn the unit to the wrong side and flip the print piece ‘open’, which will push the seam allowance towards the print.
4. Snowball the other end, this time flipping the square open as previously, towards the neutral. Pressing the seam allowances in opposite direction will mean that your units will nest beautifully when they’re joined together.
The diagram shows the back of the block. MAKE 52
5. Choose 13 units and join them together to form a border section, pressing your seams open to avoid bulk. Take a moment every now and then to check that your bunting units are finishing at exactly 4” wide when they’re sewn together. The border should measure 2½” x 52”.
If you won't be attaching the border sections to the quilt straight away, stop it stretching by stay-stitch along the long sides of 1/8” from the edge.
Assembling the Quilt...
6. Lay out the quilt blocks, distributing the filler blocks in the gaps between the sampler blocks.
7. Join a pair of filler blocks and then add to the side/top/bottom of a sampler block as requited.
8. Join two of the units made in step 7 together to create each 'corner' of the quilt centre.
9. Join a corner of the quilt to the central Folk Flower filler block WITH A PARTIAL SEAM leaving the last inch open (the open portion is marked |) and then backstitching. Finger-press the seam towards the centre square.
TIP: I mark a line in the seam allowance with a water-soluble pen to remind me.
Continue adding the remaining corners, working clockwise.
10. Sew the last seam, closing the partial seam on the filler block.
TIP: start sewing from just before the end of the partial seam to avoid any puckers.
11. Add the 2” cream inner borders to the quilt centre – sides first, then top and bottom - joining strips to make longer lengths where needed. Press towards the border.
12. Add 2 of the bunting borders to the sides of the quilt centre - if you’ve been measuring carefully they should fit a treat - pressing towards the inner border. Then join a 2½” print square to each end of the 2 remaining bunting borders, pressing towards the squares, before adding them to the top and bottom of the quilt centre.
13. Add the 3” cream outer borders as described in step 11.
14. Cut your backing into two WOF x 69” pieces. Trim off the selvages and join together using a ½” seam, pressed open, then trim to 69” square.
15. Sandwich the batting between the backing and the quilt top, baste, then machine or hand quilt. You can find my notes on hand quilting here. I decided to have mine long-arm quilted by my friend Jayne and we settled on a pretty edge-to-edge design called A Tisket A Tasket.
16. Join the binding strips and press in half, wrong sides together, along its length. Trim away excess batting and background - taking the opportunity to ensure your corners are square - and bind the raw edge using your preferred method. You can find mine here.
Our quilt may be finished, but when you snuggle under it on winter nights I hope you'll remember all the stops on our journey and reminisce about the time we spent stitching together...
Nicola & Andrea xx