This weeks work in progress actually started in April last year when Red Pepper Quilts posted their instructions on how to make a Postage stamp quilt. I had always wanted to make one and so, inspired I spent a couple of months just gradually cutting out 2 x 7 inch strips of fabric. Every time I made a quilt I would cut some extra strips for my postage stamp quilt.
Fast forward to January 2013. My pile of cut strips have been staring at me for months, daring me to start the process, so this week I dusted them off and bravely started.
Very quickly I realised that there was a special kind of madness in making a quilt with 1 1/2 inch squares. MADNESS. I started by chain piecing two strips of fabric together , sewing piece after piece. Then I chain pieced two of my sections together to form a block of 4 strips which were then ironed and cut into 2 inch strips. Feel free to head here for Red Peppers more detailed/coherent instructions.
Then the crazy really kicks in… as you now have piles and piles of 2 x 6.5 inch strips which have to be sewn into blocks of 4 strips. At this point seam allowance becomes crucial and you also give up worrying about colour placement and surrender to the process.
I am currently putting together my blocks, slowly but surely – the direction of your seams is important to make sure that the blocks sit right, which slows the sewing for me. I have made some progress – 17 blocks done 30+ more to go!!!! I have been fascinated by how the look of a fabric changes when it is cut into such a small piece. Patterns are out of context and colours appear that you did not know were there.
I just keep reminding myself (a) that it will be worth it in the end and (b) I never have to do this again. To keep myself motivated I did sew a couple of blocks together so I could see the effect. This quilt is going to make for one crazy game of eye spy.
16 thoughts on “Postage stamp quilt madness”
Wow, that takes some work! It bet it will look great when it’s finished!
Ohh my – I do love those postage stamp quilts. But I don’t want to think about all those years it’s goign to take me to collect the fabric. I will just get lost in your square for the moment.
1. Such a great idea to save scraps for a postage stamp quilt! Since I’m just starting out, I’m going to start this now.
I just had a clear shoe box that I threw the strips into. They slowly accumulated over time which took the pressure off doing all that cutting at once. Good luck.
I love all your bright colors. Looking forward to watching this one grow.
oye! I thought the scrappy trip was a bit mad but… lol It is gonna be great!
Great post with clear explanations. I agree with the importance of pressing those seam allowances in opposite direction and how those colours change depending on their neighbors, but mostly I agree with your points a) and b) – I used to tell myself the same thing at each of my kids’ birth, lol.
Hahahaha. Me too.
keep it up! You’re going to LOVE this one when it’s all done. 😉
Wow that quilt is going to be great. Love your scraps!
that is going to be one beautiful quilt! I have always wanted to do one of those but it looks very tedius! totally worth it though!
I’m glad I found this post! I just finished cutting all my 2X7 strips to make this quilt, and I know I’m going to have a hard time just piecing them together randomly … I keep telling myself not to think about what is going where! Yours looks wonderful so far!
Holly just take a deep breath and dive in. I have just finished piecing the top and it is really cute. I struggled a little with the seams but once I was on a roll it became easier. Good luck.
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I love your bright colors! I’ve seen postage stamp quilts all over, and didn’t know if I would take the plunge…but after falling in love with yours, mine may be starting soon. Ooofta, I really did just write that!