Several years ago prior to starting my business, I was asked to teach a crazy quilting class at one of my local quilt stores. I’ll start by saying I really love taking classes and workshops but I don’t consider myself a teacher. Needless to say I was very unsure I wanted to do this at all. But as time progressed I found I was one of only a couple of quilter’s in a guild of over 150 members that did crazy quilting. So, I put together a class!
The class was several sessions focusing on beginner’s creating one block and much to my surprise proved quite popular. Over the coming months I hope you will join me for a crazy quilting class journey.
I started the first class discussing fabric selection and beginning to construct a 12 inch block. I opted for a larger block so seams would be longer and I hoped easier to stitch for those beginning. I follow Judith Baker Montano’s technique of five sided pieces sewn onto a muslin base. Prior to the class I had requested that students select their colour scheme and bring a variety of fabrics IF they had them. Since all participants were traditional quilter’s most brought cotton and I offered a variety of colours in silks, satins, brocades etc from my personal stash. There was no shortage of FABRIC!
Let’s start with fabrics.
I generally try to select silks, satins, brocades and cottons. I don’t like to use heavier fabrics such as those for upholstery nor do I use batiks. Upholstery fabric is unpleasant for stitching and batik is generally a tighter weave and again not particularly pleasant to stitch – I speak from experience!
Choose one bolder larger multi-coloured patterned fabric as your focal fabric. All the fabric colours in your block/quilt will draw from the colours in this fabric choice.
Since the chosen block was 12 inches, cut a 13 inch piece of muslin as the backing. Start by selecting a central fabric and cut it with five sides. Cut a second piece of fabric and add to one side, sew a narrow ¼ inch seam. Continue adding fabrics alternating solids, patterns and textures working your way from the center to the outside of the block. I’m not going to go into greater depth with this discussion as you will find videos and various books outlining the five sided method.
Once the block is complete I always trim the outer edges and sew a narrow ¼ inch seam (you may serge if you have a serger). Iron and you are ready to begin.
Please remember to check out categories in the right sidebar for Crazy Quilting – there are lots of posts.
Want to join me?! Get your fabrics ready.
Next class we will discuss placement of fabric, choosing threads and embellishments.