Do you have an overwhelming amount of fabric in your stash? Please tell me it's not just me!
I can't resist a sale and love to pick up fat quarters and cute, whimsical fabrics - novelty prints, they're called in the store. Once I get them home though I don't have any idea what to do with them, so into the stash they go, only to be taken out every so often, stroked and restashed. I have so many of these adorable fabrics that my fabric cupboards are overflowing. It was definitely time to do something with these fabrics!
When I want to make a quilt I typically spent lots of time browsing through my patterns by other designers, working on a few designs myself and then getting distracted by "real" work that I need to get done. I wasn't going to be so easily distracted this time so I decided to make a jelly roll race quilt. If you don't know what I'm talking about, see my Youtube video on some others I've created.
This is such a simple design and works well for scrap fabrics too. I like to make this type of quilt when I need a break from my "thinking" activities (creating patterns, writing blogposts - like this one - working on on-line courses) as it is mindless stitching and the results look great.
This design uses 2 1/2" strips of fabric - hence the name jelly roll race. To start I needed to cut 2 1/2" strips of fabric to create the quilt top. This was easy thanks to my AccuQuilt GO! cutter and my 2 1/2" strip die. I decided to cut up my 1930's reproduction fabrics as they aren't as appealing to me as they used to be. I layered them up, ran them through the cutter and voila, lots of 2 1/2" strips.
Some variations of the jelly roll race pattern add a 2 1/2" square of a solid fabric between the strips of fabric. I had lots of white scrap fabric, some of which was already cut into 2 1/2" squares - bonus!, so I just needed to cut up enough of the remaining white fabric so I had enough squares to stitch in between the longer fabric strips.
Once I had all my fabric cut up, it was time to piece it together! Strip of fabric, 2 1/2" white square, strip of fabric, 2 1/2" white square - you can see how mindless creating this quilt top was. I really wasn't concerned about the finished look so I didn't waste time on arranging the fabrics in any particular order. Just piece, piece, piece.
Once I had a looong strip of fabric all pieced together, it was time to... do more piecing! I joined the ends together and stitched them up until I reached the end. I now had a double row of fabric. I took this double row and lined it up with the opposite double row and stitched the together for a quadruple row of strips (this is starting to sound a bit confusing, isn't it?). I continued piecing ends together until I had the size of quilt that I wanted. I added borders on all sides and it was done!
I wasn't sure what I was going to do with this quilt when I was finished with it, but I now know where it will be going. I'm donating it to be given to an evacuee from Fort MacMurray. The recent wildfire caused the evacuation of this northern Alberta town and families are still not able to return to their homes. Many quilters in our province and in the rest of Canada have been contributing quilts for these evacuated families to provide some comfort to them. Erie Quilt Art in Calgary is accepting quilt donations and will be sure that these are all distributed to Fort Mac residents affected by the wildfire. If you'd like to help out, it's best to donate to the Red Cross.
I enjoyed making this quilt and was pleased that it will go to a good cause. I will probably make more like this from fabrics that I don't know what to do with. What do you do with not-sure-what-to-do-with-them fabrics? Leave me a comment below to tell me your idea.