Hey you! Are you ready to rock, roll, and cut? I sure am because I LOVE when cutting is simple and straight forward. In Week 2 of the Starling sew along we cut our fabric. And guess what! It's all squares!! Can you believe we can make so many different shapes and quilt blocks from just a bunch of squares?
I've got some tips AND video tutorials to help you along the way. Like always, if you have any questions simply ask them in the comments below or add them to the sew along discussion happening in the Suzy Quilts Patterns Facebook group.
Starling Quilt Sew Along Schedule
- Week 1, March 31: Gather fabric
Sponsor: Lamb & Loom - Starling Quilt Kit (Gemstone) + surprise backing
IG LIVE - @suzyquilts: Monday, April 3 @ 2pm Central - We discussed fabric selection + Q&A.
- Week 2, April 7: Cut fabric
Sponsor: Global Fiber - Flowering Trees by Oana Befort fabric bundle
- Week 3, April 14: Sew square-in-square units
Sponsor: Art Gallery Fabrics - LOTS of FQs 🙂
- Week 4, April 21: Sew flying geese units
Sponsor: Thai Charm - throw size quilting
- Week 5, April 28: Assemble blocks
Sponsor: Sewing Arts Center - $100 gift card
IG LIVE - @suzyquilts: Tuesday, May 2 @ 2pm Central - We will discuss block assembly + a demo on 3 different ways to pin a block to get your seams to align.
- Week 6, May 5: Finish quilt top
Sponsor: Trace Creek Quilting - throw sized quilting
Week 2 Assignment: Cut Fabric
I had a moment of conviction over the weekend while I was baking muffins. An Instagram toddler food influencer (yes, that is a thing) had convinced me that I could get my kids to eat vegetables if I hid them in muffins. Her carrot and zucchini muffin recipe was sure to be a hit, she said. It was incredible easy, she said — foolproof, even!
Here's the thing about attempting something that's been labeled as foolproof. When you mess it up, you feel pretty bad about yourself. And friends, if it's kitchen related, there's a 50/50 chance I'm going to mess it up.
So, with antsy toddlers pulling on my legs, I sliced into one of my carrot-zucchini-applesauce-raisin muffins and... they were totally raw in the middle! I guess all of that produce made things pretty wet. So, after completely cooling them for 15 minutes, I stuck them back in the oven for a second bake. I don't know the rules about baking then cooling then rebaking muffins, but I'm guessing it's frowned upon.
Anyway, after the second cooling, I applied enough cream cheese on top that both of my kids ate them. So...total win!
Why did I share this story about a 30-something-year old struggling to make toddler muffins? It's because as a quilter of over 20 years, it is tempting for me to say that cutting fabric for the Starling quilt is incredibly easy — maybe even foolproof! But you know what I know from the depths of my heart? When you're new or even just new-ish at something, it's not easy.
So if at any point you find yourself getting frustrated during this quilt-making process, just picture me in a kitchen bumbling through toddler muffins. Okay? Picture that until you smile a little. Cause we're here to have fun! Oh, and speaking of Instagram, I saw this right after I made those muffins and it made me feel better. 😉
Tip #1: Iron all of your fabric.
It's a basic tip for some basic cutting! Iron your fabric before you cut. If you're a starch person, this is the point in the quilting process when you should spray starch all over your fabric. I actually like to water down my starch to make it last longer (cause I'm cheap!)
Check out this post for my trick to ironing creases out of FQs, The Best Way To Prepare Fat Quarters For Quilting.
Tip #2: Pay attention to the cutting diagrams on page 3.
If you're making the throw quilt like me, you can completely ignore the #4 cutting diagram. Divide your FQs into three piles:
- 5 FQs will use diagram #1
- 4 FQs will use diagram #2
- 1 FQ will use diagram #3
Tip #3: Stack your fabric.
People, you MUST have a sharp blade on your rotary cutter for this tip to work. If your blade is sharp enough, you should be able to cut 4-5 layers of fabric at a time. So stack your piles on top of each other, measure carefully, then slice. You will be finished so fast you won't even believe it!
Tip #4: Watch this tutorial video!
Guess who loves you so much she decided to film a tutorial video on cutting? ME! I just thought that on the off chance cutting fabric for you feels like toddler baking for me, you might like a little extra hand holding.
Tip #5: Layer Cake cutting instructions are on the blog.
If you are using a Layer Cake to make your Starling quilt, use the cutting diagrams found in this post, Make the Starling Pattern with a Layer Cake. Measure your 10" squares so you really know what you're working with.
Sometimes they are exactly 10" from pinked tip to pinked tip. Other times they are a teeny bit big. Just make a mental note that if your measurements include the pinking, you should include the pinking in your seam allowance. Here's a little illustration to show you what I'm talking about.
On the left you did not include the pinked edge in your measurement so you can either trim it off, or exclude it from your 1/4" seam. On the right, you needed to measure all the way to the pinked tip to get 10". That means you need to measure the same way when sewing your 1/4" seam.
We'll cover this in more detail once we start sewing.
Week 2 Sponsor & Prize
This week Global Fiber is our sponsor. The prize isa Flowering Trees Bundle of organic poplin from Birch Fabrics. Oooh la la! We love Global Fiber so much that we have included them on our special partnership Discounts page.
How to Win
- Post a pic to Instagram. The photo prompt for Instagram this week is to post a pic of your Starling progress. Use #StarlingQuiltSA in the caption.
- You must have a public Instagram profile to participate.
- Each photo posted is an entry and you can enter as many times as you want in a single week. Once the week is over, those posts do not count in the next week's giveaway. Every week we start fresh.
- Your photo must be posted between Friday, April 7 and Friday, April 14. The winner will be picked randomly from all qualifying posts and announced at approximately 4:00 p.m. on the 14th. Good luck!