Lunch Hour Crafts #8- Scrappy Squares
It is getting cooler here in Ontario, which means that winter is coming- I didn’t want to say it, but I did. I feel like summer goes by so fast and then September rolls around and the Sears Wishbook comes in the mail, and I start considering hibernation as a legitimate way to survive the winter. But do you know what comes with winter, besides questionably fashionable suede boots and the desire to sleep for 6 months straight? Quilts. Quilts for the car, quilts for the couch, quilts for bundling. Quilts. Requisite for Canadian winters.
This craft could be used as part of a quilt top (the fancy/designed side of the quilt) or in any other craft where you need some beautiful fabric. It uses up scraps that you’ve saved (because you always save the scraps, right??) or you can pick out fabric and cut it up specifically for this craft.
To start, pick out some scraps to use. Generally, they should be at least and inch wide and one to eight inches long, although the lengths you need will depend on how you arrange them.
Press (iron- pressing just means ironing without sliding the iron around too much, just “pressing” it down- see? That’s where “press” comes in. I really appreciate how logical quilting terms are!) each piece so that it is nice and flat. Lay them out and trim them to be rectangular (doesn’t have to be perfect, just get some straight edges) and arrange from shortest to longest.
Now, you’re going to sew pieces together to make a big square. The most important thing to do is iron your seam every time you sew pieces together. Press (see! That clever word again.) the seam away from the center block.
Take the smallest piece, or whichever you want at the center of your block, and match it up with the second smallest piece, lining up the top edges as well as the side you’ll be sewing. Sew a straight line with a 1/4″ seam, and press it away from the center block (see picture 1). There might be some fabric sticking out the one end, that’s okay. Take your next piece, line it up with the top of the two pieces you just joined and one edge. Sew them together, press the seam out. Take a third piece, and line it up, sew it on, press it out. You get the drill.
After you have 4 pieces joined together, you might find that you’re out of straight edges. This means it is time to trim! Using a cutting mat and rotary cutter, square up your edges and make all the edges straight.
Now, keep going, adding on pieces on each side, trimming as necessary. Always choose pieces that are longer than the side you’re adding them to. When the square (or rectangle, or triangle even) is the size you want, square up the edges and trim off any loose threads.
There you go. Press the whole thing once more, and use it however you’d like! Make a few in different color combinations.
Tomorrow, we’ll look at how to use these scrappy squares for upcycled potholders- make a few for Christmas gifts!