Spools of Fun
Inspired by Spoolin' Around from designer Cindy Blackberg
Quilt tester: Laura Boehnke
- 3⁄8 yard black-and-white polka dot (blocks)
- 1⁄2 yard total assorted polka dots in green, orange, purple, pink, red, and yellow (blocks)
- 1⁄4 yard total assorted plaids and stripes (blocks)
- 5⁄8 yard novelty print (quilt center)
- 1⁄4 yard multicolor polka dot (border)
- 1⁄3 yard binding print (binding)
- 7⁄8 yard backing fabric
- 31" square batting
Finished quilt: 22-1⁄2" square
Finished blocks: 2-3⁄4" square
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 pieces in the following order. Click on "Download this Project" above for pattern pieces. Be sure to transfer the dots (or seam lines if hand piecing) to the templates, then to the fabric pieces. (The dots are matching points that are used when setting in seams.)
From black-and-white polka dot, cut:
- 48 of Pattern A
From assorted polka dots, cut:
- 48 of Pattern A (24 sets of 2 matching pieces)
From assorted plaids and stripes, cut:
- 24 of Pattern B
From novelty print, cut:
- 1--11-1⁄2" square
From multicolor polka dot, cut:
- 4--3-1⁄4×17" outer border strips
From binding print, cut:
- 3--2-1⁄2×42" binding strips
As you piece blocks, finger-press seams in the desired direction to help keep your work smooth. Trim points to reduce bulk.
1. Referring to Diagram 1, lay out two matching black-and-white polka dot A pieces, two matching assorted polka dot A pieces, and a plaid or stripe B square.
2. Pin one edge of plaid or stripe B square to short edge of an assorted polka dot A piece, carefully aligning and pinning marked matching points (Diagram 2). Sew together between matching points, making sure you do not stitch into the 1⁄4" seam allowances. In same manner, join remaining assorted polka dot A piece to opposite edge of plaid or stripe B square to make a spool unit (Diagram 3).
3. Referring to Diagram 4, layer a black-and-white polka dot A piece atop spool unit, aligning edge with edge of an assorted polka dot A piece. Pin together, carefully aligning matching points. Sew between matching points in direction of arrow. Backstitch at end of seam (being careful not to catch seam allowance underneath).
4. Referring to Diagrams 4 and 5, pivot the black-and-white polka dot A piece to align it with edge of plaid or stripe B square; pin at matching point. Sew between matching points in direction of arrow; backstitch. Finger-press seam allowances to the right.
5. Referring to Diagrams 5 and 6, pivot black-and-white polka dot A piece again to align it with edge of adjacent assorted polka dot A piece. Pin and stitch between matching points; backstitch.
6. Repeat steps 3–5 to join remaining black-and-white polka dot A piece to opposite edges of spool unit to make a Spool block (Diagram 7). Press completed block with an iron, pressing seams in directions that allow them to lie as flat as possible or that will enable you to quilt as desired without stitching through seam allowances. The block should be 3-1⁄4" square including seam allowances.
7. Repeat steps 1–6 to make 24 Spool blocks total.
Assemble and Add Borders
1. Referring to Quilt Assembly Diagram for block orientation, sew together four Spool blocks to make a short inner border strip. Press seams in one direction. The strip should be 3-1⁄4×11-1⁄2" including seam allowances. Repeat to make a second short inner border strip.
2. Join six Spool blocks to make a long inner border strip. Press seams in one direction. The strip should be 3-1⁄4×17" including seam allowances. Repeat to make a second long inner border strip.
3. Sew short inner border strips to opposite edges of novelty print 11-1⁄2"" square. Add long inner border strips to remaining edges to make quilt center. Press all seams toward novelty print square.
4. Sew multicolor polka dot 3-1⁄4×17" outer border strips to opposite edges of quilt center; press seams toward outer border. Sew a remaining Spool block to each end of remaining multicolor polka dot 3-1⁄4×17" outer border strips to make two pieced outer border strips. Press seams away from blocks. Join pieced outer border strips to remaining edges to complete quilt top. Press seams toward outer border.
1. Layer quilt top, batting, and backing; baste. Quilt as desired.
2. Bind with binding strips.