A pillow of Log Cabin blocks showcases beautiful batiks in a rainbow of colors. Fabrics are from the Java Batiks collection by Maywood Studio.
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Inspired by Dotty from designer Jill Abeloe Mead

Quilt tester: Jan Ragaller


  • Scraps of assorted batiks for centers (blocks)
  • 9--5" squares of assorted batiks for round 1 (blocks)
  • 9--7" squares of assorted batiks for round 2 (blocks)
  • 18×22" piece (fat quarter) blue batik (backing)
  • 15" square pillow form

Finished pillow: 15"

Yardages and cutting instructions are based on 42" of usable fabric width.

Measurements include 1⁄4" seam allowances. Sew with right sides together unless otherwise stated.

Cut Fabrics

Cut pieces in the following order.

From assorted batik scraps for centers, cut:

  • 9--1-1⁄2" squares

From each assorted batik for round 1, cut: 

  • 1--1-1⁄2 ×3-1⁄2" strip
  • 2--1-1⁄2 ×2-1⁄2" strips
  • 1--1-1⁄2" square

From each assorted batik for round 2, cut: 

  • 1--1-1⁄2 ×5-1⁄2" strip
  • 2--1-1⁄2 ×4-1⁄2" strips
  • 1--1-1⁄2 ×3-1⁄2" strip

From blue batik, cut:

  • 2--10-1⁄4×15-1⁄2" rectangle

Assemble Blocks

1.    Gather one center batik 1-1⁄2" square, a set of round 1 batik pieces (one 1-1⁄2 ×3-1⁄2" strip, two 1-1⁄2×2-1⁄2" strips, and one 1-1⁄2" square), and a set of round 2 batik pieces (one 1-1⁄2 ×5-1⁄2" strip, two 1-1⁄2 ×4-1⁄2" strips, and one 1-1⁄2 ×3-1⁄2" strip).

2.    Sew together center and round 1 square to make a center unit (Diagram 1). Press seam away from center square.


3.    Add a round 1-1-1⁄2 ×2-1⁄2" strip to right-hand edge of center unit (Diagram 2). Press seam away from center unit.


4.    Add remaining round 1-1-1⁄2 ×2-1⁄2" strip to bottom edge of center unit (Diagram 3). Press seam away from center unit. Add round 1-1-1⁄2 ×3-1⁄2" strip to left-hand edge (Diagram 4). Press seam away from center unit.


5.    Referring to Diagram 5, add round 2 strips in clockwise order to make a block. Press all seams away from center unit. The block should be 5-1⁄2" square including seam allowances.


6.    Repeat steps 1–5 using remaining center batik squares and rounds 2 and 3 batik sets to make nine blocks total.

Assemble Pillow Top

Referring to Pillow Assembly Diagram, lay out blocks in three rows, rotating center blocks as shown to offset seams. Sew together blocks to make pillow top. Press seams open. The pillow top should be 15-1⁄2" square including seam allowances.


Finish Pillow

1.    Turn one long edge of each blue batik 10-1⁄4×15-1⁄2" rectangle under 1⁄4"; press. Turn same long edges under 1⁄4" again; press. Topstitch folded edges to hem.

2.    Referring to Pillow Back Assembly Diagram, overlap hemmed edges of blue batik pieces about 4" to make a 15-1⁄2" square. Stitch across overlaps to make pillow back.


3.    Layer pillow top and pillow back with right sides together. Stitch all edges to make pillow cover. Turn right side out through opening in pillow back; press. Insert 15"-square pillow form to complete pillow.