Experiment with unlikely fabric combinations and quilting styles to craft a Log Cabin stunner that gives equal play to lights and darks. 

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Designer: Lissa Alexander

Materials

Designer Lissa Alexander chose a few medium fabrics (grays, turquoises, and reds) and mixed them in with the lights and darks when cutting.

• 1⁄3 yard mottled red (block centers)

• 24-1⁄4-yard pieces assorted dark prints in black, brown, turquoise, and gray (blocks)

• 24-1⁄4-yard pieces assorted light prints in white, cream, tan, turquoise, and red (blocks)

• 3⁄4 yard black tone-on-tone (binding)

• 5-7⁄8 yards backing fabric

• 81×105" batting

Finished quilt: 72-1⁄2 ×96-1⁄2" (twin-size with 16" drop)

Finished block: 12" 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 following order.

From mottled red, cut:

• 48-2-1⁄2" squares

From each dark print, cut:

• 2-1-1⁄2 ×11-1⁄2" strips

• 2-1-1⁄2 ×10-1⁄2" strips

• 2-1-1⁄2 ×9-1⁄2" strips

• 2-1-1⁄2 ×8-1⁄2" strips

• 2-1-1⁄2 ×7-1⁄2" strips

• 2-1-1⁄2 ×6-1⁄2" strips

• 2-1-1⁄2 ×5-1⁄2" strips

• 2-1-1⁄2  ×4-1⁄2" strips

• 2-1-1⁄2 ×3-1⁄2" strips

• 2-1-1⁄2 ×2-1⁄2" strips

From each light print, cut:

• 2-1-1⁄2 ×12-1⁄2" strips

• 2-1-1⁄2 ×11-1⁄2" strips

• 2-1-1⁄2 ×10-1⁄2" strips

• 2-1-1⁄2 ×9-1⁄2" strips

• 2-1-1⁄2 ×8-1⁄2" strips

• 2-1-1⁄2 ×7-1⁄2" strips

• 2-1-1⁄2 ×6-1⁄2" strips

• 2-1-1⁄2 ×5-1⁄2" strips

• 2-1-1⁄2 ×4-1⁄2" strips

• 2-1-1⁄2 ×3-1⁄2" strips

From black tone-on-tone, cut:

• 9-2-1⁄2 ×42" binding strips

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About the Technique

Lissa used two different dark prints to make the dark half of each Log Cabin block. In most of her blocks (40 out of 48), she used the darker of the two prints for rounds 1, 3, and 5, and the lighter of the two prints for rounds 2 and 4 (Diagram 5). For interest, in a few blocks she reversed that placement. This results in some groups of four blocks in the finished quilt forming an alternating pattern of dark prints. (See the black print in the top middle set of four blocks in the Quilt Assembly Diagram.)

Assemble Blocks

1. For one block, gather the following: one mottled red 2-1⁄2" square, 1-1⁄2"-wide strips from one dark print (one each in 2-1⁄2", 3-1⁄2", 6-1⁄2", 7-1⁄2", 10-1⁄2", and 11-1⁄2" lengths), 1-1⁄2"-wide strips from a second dark print (one each in 4-1⁄2", 5-1⁄2", 8-1⁄2", and 9-1⁄2" lengths), matching light print 1-1⁄2 ×3-1⁄2" and 1-1⁄2 ×4-1⁄2" strips, matching light print 1-1⁄2 ×5-1⁄2" and 1-1⁄2 ×6-1⁄2" strips, matching light print 1-1⁄2 ×7-1⁄2" and 1-1⁄2 ×8-1⁄2" strips, matching light print 1-1⁄2 ×9-1⁄2" and 1-1⁄2 ×10-1⁄2" strips, and matching light print 1-1⁄2 ×11-1⁄2" and 1-1⁄2 ×12-1⁄2" strips.

2. Referring to Diagram 1, sew together mottled red print 2-1⁄2" square and dark print 1-1⁄2 ×2-1⁄2" strip. Press seam away from mottled red square.

3. Add dark print 1-1⁄2 ×3-1⁄2" strip to right-hand edge of Step 2 unit (Diagram 2). Press as before.

4. Sew light print 1-1⁄2 ×3-1⁄2" strip to top edge of Step 3 unit (Diagram 3). Then add light print 1-1⁄2 ×4-1⁄2" strip to left-hand edge of unit (Diagram 4). Press all seams away from center.

5. Referring to Diagram 5, continue adding assorted print strips to pieced unit, pressing all seams away from center, to make a Log Cabin block. The block should be 12-1⁄2" square including seam allowances.

6. Repeat steps 1–5 to make 48 Log Cabin blocks total.

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Assemble Quilt Center

1. Referring to Quilt Assembly Diagram, lay out Log Cabin blocks in eight horizontal rows, rotating blocks as shown for a Light and Dark setting (light and dark squares on point emerge across the quilt top).

2. Sew together blocks in each row. Press seams in one direction, alternating direction with each row.

3. Join rows to make quilt top. Press seams in one direction.

Finish Quilt

1. Layer quilt top, batting, and backing; baste.

2. Quilt as desired. Maggi Honeyman used two different quilting styles to highlight the Light and Dark setting of the Log Cabin blocks. In the light diamonds created by each group of four blocks, she quilted a feathered wreath surrounded by dense echoed feathers. In the dark diamonds, she used straight-line quilting, stitching in the ditch and through the center of each log (Quilting Diagram).​

3. Bind with black tone-on-tone binding strips.

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