Gleaned Log Cabin Quilt

Sit down, grab a cuppa, this is a long one! Nothing dramatic, just one of those conversational posts with lots of photos that I feel compelled to write every now and then.

Gleaned fabric, log cabin quilt by Bonjour Quilts

Back in November last year I picked up a jelly roll* (40 strips, 2.5″ wide) and two mini-charm packs (2.5″ square) of Carolyn Friedlander’s new line Gleaned.

Gleaned fabric, log cabin quilt by Bonjour Quilts

The colours are fresh and modern and play so well with all of Carolyn’s other lines (something I love about her fabrics). I also really love the botanical flavour of many of the prints, especially as I’ve just been reading the latest Uppercase book, which is full of beautiful blooms.

Gleaned fabric, log cabin quilt by Bonjour Quilts

And includes a spread on artist and fabric designer Bari J Ackerman!

Gleaned fabric, log cabin quilt by Bonjour Quilts

There’s also some rather pretty botanica right outside my window at the moment…

But I digress. Anyway, these pre-cuts sat on my (messy) sewing table for quite a bit while I considered what to do with them. I circled back to log cabins blocks because they’re just so easy when using the 2.5″ strips from a roll.

Gleaned fabric, log cabin quilt by Bonjour Quilts

I really liked the colour order used to put the jelly roll together and wanted to keep the neighbouring colours together as “centres” and “logs”.

Gleaned fabric, log cabin quilt by Bonjour Quilts

Aren’t these fantastic neutrals/low-volumes?

Gleaned fabric, log cabin quilt by Bonjour Quilts

When I unwrapped all the mini charms I just took the top colour off and popped it underneath the pile (see below). Then all the centres were one colour further along the colour order than the logs. I just sewed my log cabins from the two colours that were at the top of both piles.

Gleaned fabric, log cabin quilt by Bonjour Quilts

I found I could make two log cabin blocks from each fabric strip (using 2 x mini-charm squares). If you can’t find mini-charm packs, it’s easy enough to take a layer cake* (10″) and chop it into quarters (2.5″).

Gleaned fabric, log cabin quilt by Bonjour Quilts

Gleaned fabric, log cabin quilt by Bonjour Quilts

Now, the strip roll and mini-charm packs didn’t have the exact same number of all the fabrics. In some cases I had more squares than strips for a colour combination, and occasionally more strips than squares. Not a problem, I just matched up the leftovers in pleasing colour combinations.

Gleaned fabric, log cabin quilt by Bonjour Quilts

Gleaned fabric, log cabin quilt by Bonjour Quilts

From a 40 strip roll and 2 x mini-charm packs I made 80 log cabin blocks. I chain pieced them all with a scant quarter inch seam.

My sewing machine ran hot that weekend. Sometimes it’s great to churn out a whole bunch of blocks really quickly.

Gleaned fabric, log cabin quilt by Bonjour Quilts

Then I trimmed all the blocks to 6.5″ square.

Gleaned fabric, log cabin quilt by Bonjour Quilts

Given I had 80 blocks, I decided on an 8 x 10 block layout. This would give a lap sized quilt (48″ x 60″).

This was the first layout I tried.

Gleaned fabric, log cabin quilt by Bonjour Quilts

I was trying to keep the neighbouring colours from the strip roll together but I just wasn’t feeling the love.

I continued on in this vein, trying move the colours across the quilt in the order I wanted. Sadly none of my arrangements were what I had pictured.

It wasn’t helping that I’d had a bad day at work that day (I tend to feel uncreative on such days).

Or that a play fort had appeared in the path between my machine and my design wall:

We’ve had a lot of rain the past week. The kids had fun building an indoor fort with a couple of cool indoor fort kits* and some of our queen bed sheets. (It’s too hot for quilt forts here in Australia right now.)

I wasn’t having a win with the design so I decided to step away from it for a day. I thought perhaps a bit of time off would encourage some different ideas. Plus I had to help the 6 yr old build a farm in the fort. Very important business, you see :)

I have a bunch more photos of other layouts, but I’ll save them for the next post, which you can find here.

Hope you’re all having better luck with your creativity!

Cheers!

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12 thoughts on “Gleaned Log Cabin Quilt”

  1. Is there a tutorial for this easy block? I think you sewed the middle squares (mini charms) along a jelly strip, then repeated along the other side of the squares, then cut to make the middle, then the rest of the jelly strip for the outer sides? This makes 4 squares?

    Reply
    • That’s it Jill. Each strip, plus 2 squares, makes 2 blocks. So I would sew one side of each square to the strip, then clip apart. Sew the other side of each square to the strip, then clip apart. Press both seams. Then sew the strip on the other two sides of the centre square to create a complete round of “logs” around the centre square. Clip apart and press and trim. Voilà!

      Reply
  2. What a great idea to just move one color to the back of the stack. I am color challenged so this idea really appeals to me. Can’t wait to see the layout you choose. Thanks for the tut. And I love those fabrics.

    Reply
    • Thanks Elaine. Colour coordination can definitely be troublesome, that’s why I was happy that this jelly roll had already done the work for me!

      Reply
  3. Very pretty fabric and now I can see how to quickly piece I have been doing it the hard way! Love that tree with the pink leaves, what is it?

    Reply
  4. I’m new to your blog. Was enjoying your story … & then you stopped!! Aaahhh! It was like reading a mystery & now l’m thinking, “seriously??!!! But what was the final layout??!!” So … can’t wait till you show how you finally decided to arrange the quilt. ????

    Reply
    • Ha, I’m such a tease, right? Don’t worry, I will have a post up this week about it. I am only 6 seams away from finishing it. Come back soon!

      Reply
  5. Thanks for sharing your process of this quilt. The lattice for sashing is just what I needed to finish a quilt similar to yours. I have been pondering along time for just the right way to sash my blocks. Now I just have to lay out the blocks in a please color arrangement. Oh how I need a large design wall so that any visitors could move the blocks around and help with this puzzle of color arranging. I am so excited to finally get this quilt to the next stage. Looking forward to see how you quilt it.

    Reply

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