Showcase an assortment of novelty prints on a seasonal throw that's a treat to piece!

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Getting Started

Designer Lila Taylor Scott
Photographs Greg Scheidemann

Skill level: Intermediate

Designer Notes:
A traditional block and a stash of Halloween novelty prints inspired designer Lila Taylor Scott to work some design magic. "I knew that I wanted to use a Log Cabin block, but I changed the size of the dark logs to make it more intriguing and different," Lila says. By making the dark print logs smaller than the light print logs, she tried not to make the quilt too dark.

Lila then set the Log Cabin blocks so that they showcase and frame the pieced quilt center. "Novelty prints are wonderful for this type of quilt. It's like putting a costume on a quilt, and it becomes its own character … a little trick, a little treat," says Lila.

Select Fabrics
When selecting novelty fabrics for all the blocks in a quilt top, Lila suggests setting the blocks apart with a sashing or, as she did here, with a design. In "Frightfully Fun," fabrics determine the design in the quilt center and the light and dark effect of the Log Cabin blocks.

Tip: As she cut out rectangles and squares from novelty prints needed for the Mosaic blocks, Lila also cut a 1-1/2"- or 1-1/4"-wide strip to use in the Log Cabin blocks, then dropped it in a box set aside for that strip width.

Tip: Lila wanted the center four blocks to be the focus of the quilt, so she chose a background of metallic orange and made the stars from four different prints with the same color and value -- bright yellow.

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Materials

1/3 yard metallic orange print (blocks)
32 - 1/8-yard pieces novelty prints (blocks)
1 yard total assorted bright and dark prints (blocks)
5/8 yard mottled yellow (blocks)
1/4 yard mottled purple (inner border)
1/3 yard black star print (middle border)
6 - 1/4-yard pieces geometric prints (outer border)
1/2 yard metallic black print (binding)
2-7/8 yards backing fabric
51x67" batting

Finished quilt: 44-1/2x60-1/2"
Finished block: 8" square

Quantities are for 44-45"-wide, 100% cotton fabrics.
Measurements include 1/4" seam allowances. Sew with right sides together unless otherwise stated.

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Cut Fabrics

Cut pieces in the order that follows in each section. Make a template of the Triangle Pattern.

Lila cut out four blocks at a time, pieced them, and placed them on a design wall to help her choose which fabrics to use for the next four blocks, so they would complement those already made.

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Cut and Assemble Mosaic Block A

The cutting and piecing instructions that follow result in one Mosaic block A. Each block requires five fabrics. Repeat instructions to make four total of Mosaic block A.

To create a pieced quilt center, Lila used the same metallic orange print for the background in each of the blocks. She also repeated second novelty print once in each of the blocks and positioned them so it creates a star radiating from the intersection of the four blocks. First novelty print is repeated three times in each of the blocks.

From metallic orange print, cut:
12 - 2-1/2" squares
From one dark print, cut:
4 - 2-1/2 " squares (one set of 4 matching)
From one bright print, cut:
4 - 2-1/2x4-1/2" rectangles (one set of 4 matching)
From one novelty print, cut:
3 - 2-1/2x4-1/2" rectangles (one set of 3 matching)
From second novelty print, cut:
1 - 2-1/2x4-1/2" rectangle

1. Use a pencil to mark a diagonal line on wrong sides of metallic orange print 2-1/2" squares and four matching dark print 2-1/2" squares.

2. Align a marked metallic orange print 2-1/2" square with one end of a bright print 2-1/2x4-1/2" rectangle (Diagram 1; note direction of drawn line). Stitch on marked line; trim away the excess fabric, leaving a 1/4" seam allowance. Press open attached triangle.

3. In the same manner, align a marked dark print 2-1/2" square with opposite end of the bright print 2-1/2x4-1/2" rectangle (Diagram 1; again note direction of drawn line). Stitch on marked line; trim and press as before to make a unit A. The inner unit should be 2-1/2x4-1/2" including seam allowances.

4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 to make four total of unit A.

5. Align a marked metallic orange print 2-1/2" square with one end of first novelty print - 2-1/2x4-1/2" rectangle (Diagram 2; note direction of drawn line). Stitch on marked line; trim away the excess fabric, leaving a 1/4" seam allowance. Press open attached triangle.

6. In the same manner, align another marked metallic orange print 2-1/2" square with opposite end of the novelty print 2-1/2x4-1/2" rectangle (Diagram 2; again note direction of drawn line). Stitch on marked line; trim and press as before to make a unit B. The unit B should be 2-1/2x4-1/2" including seam allowances.

7. Repeat steps 5 and 6 to make three total of unit B.

8. Using second novelty print - 2-1/2x4-1/2" rectangle, repeat steps 5 and 6 to make one unit C (Diagram 3).

9. Referring to Block A Assembly Diagram, lay out units A, B, and C in two rows. Press seams toward unit A. Join pieces in each row to make a Mosaic Block A. Press seams in one direction. The Mosaic Block A should be 8-1/2" square, including seam allowances.

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Cut and Assemble Mosaic Block B

Instructions that follow result in one Mosaic block B. Repeat cutting and assembly instructions to make eight total of Mosaic block B.

From mottled yellow print, cut:
12-2-1/2" squares

From one dark print, cut:
4-1/2" squares

From one novelty print, cut:
4-2-1/2x4-1/2" rectangles

From a bright print or a second novelty print, cut:
4-2-1/2x4-1/2" rectangles

1. Use a pencil to mark a diagonal line on wrong sides of mottled yellow print 2-1/2" squares and dark print 2-1/2" squares.

2. Referring to Cut and Assemble Mosaic Block A, steps 2 and 3, use a mottled yellow print 2-1/2" square, a bright print 2-1/2x4-1/2" rectangle, and a dark print 2-1/2" square to make a unit A. Repeat to make four total of unit A.

3. Referring to Cut and Assemble Mosaic Block A, steps 5 and 6, use two mottled yellow print 2-1/2" squares and a novelty print No. 1-2-1/2x4-1/2" rectangle to make a unit B. Repeat to make four total of unit B.

4. Referring to Mosaic Block B Assembly Diagram, lay out units A and B in two rows. Press seams toward unit A. Join pieces in each row to make a Mosaic Block B. Press seams in one direction. The block should be 8-1/2" square including seam allowances.

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Cut and Assemble Log Cabin Blocks

The cutting and piecing instructions that follow result in one Log Cabin block. Repeat instructions to make 12 Log Cabin blocks total.

Although the Log Cabin blocks are scrappy, Lila planned them carefully. She did not use the same print twice in the triangle-square centers. She also selected an orange or yellow print and a black or dark print for the first strips added to the triangle-squares. And the outside strips on each Log Cabin block are either an orange or black print on two sides.

From dark print, cut:
1 of Triangle Pattern
1 - 1-1/4x2-1/2" rectangle for position 1
1 - 1-1/4x3-1/4" rectangle for position 2
1 - 1-1/4x4-1/4" rectangle for position 5
1 - 1-1/4x5" rectangle for position 6
1 - 1-1/4x6" rectangle for position 9
1 - 1-1/4x6-3/4" rectangle for position 10
1 - 1-1/4x7-3/4" rectangle for position 13
1 - 1-1/4x8-1/2" rectangle for position 14

From light print, cut:
1 of Triangle Pattern
1 - 1-1/2x3-1/4" rectangle for position 3
1 - 1-1/2x4-1/4" rectangle for position 4
1 - 1-1/2x5" rectangle for position 7
1 - 1-1/2x6" rectangle for position 8
1 - 1-1/2x6-3/4" rectangle for position 11
1 - 1-1/2x7-3/4" rectangle for position 12

1. Sew together one dark print triangle and one light print triangle to make a triangle-square (Diagram 4). Press seam allowance in one direction. The pieced triangle-square should be 2-1/2" square including seam allowances.

2. Join a dark print position 1 rectangle to the top edge of triangle-square, noting position of dark print triangle (Diagram 5). Press seam toward rectangle.

3. Referring to Diagram 6, add dark print position 2 rectangle to right-hand edge of triangle-square; press as before.

4. Add light print position 3 rectangle to bottom edge of triangle-square (Diagram 7). Press as before.

Referring to Log Cabin Block Assembly Diagram, add light print position 4 rectangle to left-hand edge of triangle-square. Press as before. Continue adding rectangles in numerical order to make a Log Cabin block. Always press seams away from the center. Pieced Log Cabin block should be 8-1/2" including seam allowances.

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Assemble Quilt Center

1. Referring to the Quilt Assembly Diagram, lay out Mosaic A and B blocks and Log Cabin blocks in six horizontal rows.

2. Sew together blocks in each row. Press seams open. Join rows to complete quilt center. Press seams open. Pieced quilt center should be 32-1/2x48-1/2" including seam allowances.

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Cut and Add Borders

From mottled purple, cut:
5 - 1-1/4x42" strips
From black star print, cut:
5 - 1-3/4 x 42" strips
From each of six geometric prints, cut:
8 - 4-1/2" squares

1. Cut and piece mottled purple 1-1/4x42" strips to make:
2 - 1-1/4x48-1/2" inner border strips
2 - 1-1/4x34" inner border strips

2. Referring to Quilt Assembly Diagram, sew long mottled purple inner border strips to long edges of quilt center. Join short mottled purple inner border strips to remaining edges. Press all seams toward inner border.

3. Cut and piece black star print 1-3/4x42" strips to make:
2 - 1-3/4x50" middle border strips
2 - 1-3/4x36-1/2" middle border strips

4. Sew long black star print middle border strips to long edges of quilt center. Add short black star print middle border strips to remaining edges. Press all seams toward middle border.

5. Referring to Quilt Assembly Diagram, sew together 13 geometric print 4-1/2" squares, alternating each of the six prints in a sequence, to make a right-hand outer border strip. Press seams in one direction.

6. Sew together 11 geometric print 4-1/2" squares, continuing sequence of the six prints, to make a bottom outer border strip.

7. Join another 13 geometric print 4-1/2" squares, continuing sequence of the six prints, to make a left-hand outer border strip.

8. Sew together 11 geometric print 4-1/2" squares, continuing sequence of the six prints, to make a top outer border strip.

9. Sew left- and right-hand outer border strips to opposite edges of quilt center. Add top and bottom border strips to complete quilt top. Press all seams toward middle border.

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Finish Quilt

From metallic black print, cut:
6 - 2-1/2x42" binding strips

1. Layer quilt top, batting, and backing.

2. Quilt as desired. Designer Lila Scott quilted freeform spirals with copper-color metallic thread in the Mosaic blocks. Using black thread, she stitched diagonal lines on the dark half of each Log Cabin block and meandering lines with the metallic thread on the lighter half. Lila stitched in the ditch along the borders and quilted Xs in the squares of the outer border.

3. Bind with metallic black print binding strips.

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