Strips cut from a variety of fabrics fit together like a puzzle to form a feathered friend. Plenty of open space on this quilt canvas means room for you to show off your creative quilting. Fabrics are from the Les Amis by Patty Sloniger, Cotton Couture, It's a Boy Thing, and Cream Puff collections, all from Michael Miller Fabrics.

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Materials

Inspired by Wise Guy from designer Holly Hickman
Quilt tester: Laura Boehnke

1⁄2 yard solid rust (quilt center, middle border)
1⁄3 yard ivory dot (quilt center)
1⁄4 yard olive green print (quilt center)
1-7⁄8 yards light tan print (quilt center background and beak, inner border)
1⁄8 yard solid gray-brown (quilt center)
1⁄4 yard solid dark brown (quilt center)
5⁄8 yard dark teal print (quilt center, binding)
1⁄4 yard blue small dot (quilt center)
2⁄3 yard teal print (quilt center)
1⁄4 yard light green print (quilt center)
3-1⁄4-yard pieces assorted solid browns (quilt center)
1⁄4 yard solid chocolate brown (quilt center)
1⁄4 yard blue large dot (quilt center)
1⁄4 yard white print (quilt center)
1-5⁄8 yards owl print (outer border) (If not using a directional fabric, you'll need only 1-3⁄8 yards.)
3-5⁄8 yards backing fabric
64x75" batting

Finished quilt: 55-1⁄2x66-1⁄2"

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.

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Cut Fabrics

Cut pieces in the following order.

To simplify assembly of the pieced owl, cut pieces as specified, then stack them according to circled group numbers provided in diagrams 5–7.

Cut light tan print inner border strips lengthwise, parallel to the selvege.

Four owl print outer border strips were cut widthwise and two were cut lengthwise so the owl print runs in the same direction around the quilt. If you're not using a directional fabric, cut seven 6x42" strips and piece them to make four 6x55-1⁄2" outer border strips.

From solid rust, cut:
5-1-1⁄2x42" strips for middle border
4-2-1⁄2x6-1⁄2" strips
4-2-1⁄2" squares

From ivory dot, cut:
1-10-1⁄2x12-1⁄2" rectangle
2-2-1⁄2" squares

From olive green print, cut:
4-2-1⁄2x10-1⁄2" strips
4-2-1⁄2x6-1⁄2" strips

From light tan print, cut:
2-6x42-1⁄2" inner border strips
2-4-1⁄2x42-1⁄2" inner border strips
2-4-1⁄2x22-1⁄2" strips
2-4-1⁄2x10-1⁄2" strips
1-2-1⁄2x22-1⁄2" strip
2-2-1⁄2x8-1⁄2" strips
2-2-1⁄2x6-1⁄2" strips
6-2-1⁄2x4-1⁄2" strips
2-2-1⁄2x3-1⁄2" rectangles
2-2-1⁄2" squares

From solid gray-brown, cut:
1-2-1⁄2x10-1⁄2" strip
2-2-1⁄2x9-1⁄2" strips for beak units

From solid dark brown, cut:
2-2-1⁄2x12-1⁄2" strips
2-2-1⁄2x10-1⁄2" strips

For groups 3, 6, and 21:
From dark teal print, cut:
4-2-1⁄2x6-1⁄2" strips
2-2-1⁄2x4-1⁄2" strips
1-2-1⁄2" square

From dark teal print, also cut:
7-2-1⁄2x42" binding strips

For groups 4, 5, and 17:
From blue small dot, cut:
1-2-1⁄2x6-1⁄2" strip
3-2-1⁄2x4-1⁄2" strips
2-2-1⁄2" squares

For groups 7 and 19:
From teal print, cut:
3-2-1⁄2x6-1⁄2" strips
2-2-1⁄2x4-1⁄2" strips
1-2-1⁄2" square

For groups 8 and 16:
From light green print, cut:
3-2-1⁄2x6-1⁄2" strips
2-2-1⁄2x4-1⁄2" strips
1-2-1⁄2" square

For groups 1, 10, and 22:
From one solid brown, cut:
3-2-1⁄2x4-1⁄2" strips
3-2-1⁄2" squares

For groups 2, 9, 11, and 18:
From a second solid brown, cut:
4-2-1⁄2x4-1⁄2" strips
5-2-1⁄2" squares

For groups 13 and 20:
From a third solid brown, cut:
2-2-1⁄2x10-1⁄2" strips
2-2-1⁄2" squares

For group 15:
From solid chocolate brown, cut:
1-2-1⁄2x4-1⁄2" strip
2-2-1⁄2" squares

From solid chocolate brown, also cut:
1-2-1⁄2x14-1⁄2" strip
1-2-1⁄2x10-1⁄2" strip
2-2-1⁄2x6-1⁄2" strips

For group 12:
From blue large dot, cut:
1-2-1⁄2x6-1⁄2" strip
1-2-1⁄2x4-1⁄2" strip
1-2-1⁄2" square

For group 14:
From white print, cut:
1-2-1⁄2x6-1⁄2" strip
1-2-1⁄2" square

From scraps of assorted prints, solids, and dots, cut:
1-2-1⁄2x10-1⁄2" strip
2-2-1⁄2x8-1⁄2" strips
1-2-1⁄2x6-1⁄2" strip

From owl print, cut:
2-6x55-1⁄2" outer border strips, cut lengthwise (parallel to the selvages)
4-6x29" strips, cut widthwise, for outer border.

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Assemble Eye and Beak Units

1. Sew together two solid rust 2-1⁄2" squares and one ivory dot 2-1⁄2" square in a row (Diagram 1). Press seams toward solid rust squares. Join solid rust 2-1⁄2x6-1⁄2" strips to pieced row to make a center unit. Press seams toward solid rust strips. The unit should be 6-1⁄2" square including seam allowances. Repeat to make a second center unit.

2. Sew olive green print 2-1⁄2x6-1⁄2" strips to opposite edges of a center unit (Diagram 2). Join olive green print 2-1⁄2x10-1⁄2" strips to remaining edges to make an eye unit. Press all seams toward olive green print strips. The unit should be 10-1⁄2" square including seam allowances. Repeat to make a second eye unit.

3. Referring to Diagram 3, use a pencil to mark a diagonal line on wrong side of a light tan print 2-1⁄2x3-1⁄2" rectangle. Position marked rectangle at an angle on one end of a solid gray-brown 2-1⁄2x9-1⁄2" strip as shown. Sew on drawn line. Trim excess fabric, leaving 1⁄4" seam allowance. Press attached triangle open to make a beak unit. The unit should be 2-1⁄2x9-1⁄2" including seam allowances.

4. Reversing angle of line and placement of light tan print rectangle, repeat Step 3 to make a reversed beak unit (Diagram 4).

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Assemble Segments

1. Referring to Diagram 5, for dimensions and circled group numbers, lay out eye units; beak units; light tan print, solid gray-brown, solid chocolate brown, and solid dark brown strips; and assorted print, solid, and dot pieces in seven horizontal rows.

2. Sew together pairs of strips at each end of eye unit row; press seams in one direction.

3. Sew together pieces in each horizontal row. Press seams in one direction, alternating direction with each row. Join rows; press seams in one direction.

4. Sew light tan print 4-1⁄2x22-1⁄2" strips to side edges of joined rows to make head segment (Diagram 5). The head segment should be 34-1⁄2x22-1⁄2" including seam allowances.

5. Referring to Diagram 6 for dimensions and group numbers, lay out ivory dot 10-1⁄2x12-1⁄2" rectangle; light tan print and solid dark brown pieces; and assorted print, solid, and dot pieces in 13 vertical rows.

6. Sew together pieces in each vertical row. Press seams in one direction, alternating direction with each row. Join rows to make wing segment; press seams in one direction. The wing segment should be 34-1⁄2x12-1⁄2" including seam allowances.

7. Referring to Diagram 7 for dimensions and group numbers, lay out light tan print strips; solid dark brown strip; solid chocolate brown strips, and remaining assorted print, solid, and dot pieces in three horizontal rows.

8. Sew together strips in center of bottom row; press seam in one direction.

9. Join pieces in each horizontal row. Press seams in one direction, alternating direction with each row. Sew together rows to make base segment; press seams in one direction. The base segment should be 34-1⁄2×8-1⁄2" including seam allowances.

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Assemble Quilt Top

1. Referring to Quilt Assembly Diagram, join head, wing, and base segments to make quilt center. Press seams in one direction. The quilt center should be 34-1⁄2x42-1⁄2" including seam allowances.

2. Sew light tan print 4-1⁄2x42-1⁄2" inner border strips to long edges of quilt center. Add light tan print 6x42-1⁄2" border strips to remaining edges. Press all seams toward border.

3. Cut and piece solid rust 1-1⁄2x42" strips to make:
2-1-1⁄2x53-1⁄2" middle border strips
2-1-1⁄2x44-1⁄2" middle border strips

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

5. Sew lengthwise-cut owl print 6x55-1⁄2" outer border strips to long edges of quilt center. Press seams toward outer border.

6. Fussy-cut and piece owl print 6x29" strips to make:
2-6x55-1⁄2" outer border strips

7. Add pieced owl print 6x55-1⁄2" outer border strips to remaining edges of quilt center to complete quilt top. Press all seams toward outer border.

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Finish Quilt

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

2. Quilt as desired. For the machine quilting on this quilt, Vicki Hoth of Handi Quilter says they chose contrasting straight lines and curves, repeating variations of the chevron motif for a cohesive design. The chevron appears in the owl belly and beak and in the outer border. Curvy designs, including the overall background feathers, side-by-side ovals around the owl belly, and spirals in the owl eyes, soften the geometric angles created by the chevrons (Quilting Diagram).

3. Bind with dark teal print binding strips.

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