Saturday, September 26, 2009

Auditioning border fabrics

I usually decide on a border fabric, or fabrics, after I have the center of the quilt made.  Here's a tip for auditioning fabrics without having to take the whole quilt with you to the fabric store.

Once upon a time, I made this quilt:

It is an Eleanor Burns pattern, called "Star Log Cabin", and it is queen size.  After I had made all the central log cabin blocks, I was trying to decide on what fabric to use for the inner border that separated the center squares from the piano key border.  I did not want to have to bring all my squares with me to the fabric store and try to lay them out while I auditioned fabrics. 

Instead, I did this:

I laid out snippets and leftovers of the fabrics I had used onto a piece of paper, and machine-basted them, just enought to loosely secure them to the page.  Then I trimmed it down to 8.5 X 11 inches, and slipped it into a clear plastic sleeve.  That way, I could bring the plastic sleeve with me to the fabric store, and the snippets stayed safely in place, allowing me to  see a whole variety of fabrics at once.

I didn't do anything fancy with the stitching, just went around trying to be sure I caught at least a small piece of each fabric.

I found this fabric sampler in my drawer with my fall fabrics that I showed yesterday, and thought it was worth sharing here.

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  1. Good idea! I'm not organized enough for that. I'm lucky if I remember to bring anything at all to the quilt store. My trips to the quilt store are usually spur of the moment when I'm out and about...

  2. What a fantastic idea, thanks for sharing, Patricia

  3. Great idea. I'd never heard of that before. The quilt is beautiful!

  4. Great idea , thanks for sharing.Your log cabin quilt is gorgeous .

  5. Wonderful tip! And wonderful quilt! I particularly like the way the stars extend into the first border.

  6. How very pretty!! How very clever of you!! Can I come live with you and maybe some of your smarts will rub off on me?? That quilt would look so pretty on a business card for you. Gotta love it! I'll also answer your question about my ornaments. Basically yes I did design them. I found a pattern years ago thar used lots of chains, one row of shells then lots of chains again. The row of shells was in the middle of the ball. So I sort of made up my own design. I love this one I make them year after year and give out as gifts. Thanks for your comment on my blog. Me 8>)

  7. That is a terrific idea. We should make a habit of doing that with fabric we buy.


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