Split Nine Patch

I have been looking through two big boxes of quilting magazines.  There are so many tips and interesting items to read.  I will be the rest of the summer reading and enjoying all the articles  There are a few interesting quilt patterns that I have set aside to make at a later date.

IMG_2534Fons and Porter Love of Quilting magazine has articles that are written by Gerald Roy.  He is a quilt collector and appraiser.  He is also a quilter, quilt judge, painter and antique dealer.  His articles are called “This Old Quilt”.  He shows pictures and talks about antique quilts that are in his collection.

In the May/June 2008 issue, he talks about split nine patch quilts.  They are fascinating.  It was a “what if” moment.  I have a bin of 2 1/2″ squares  What if I made half square triangles from light and dark fabric and duplicated these quilts.IMG_2535




I wanted a variety of colors, so decided to make accordion sewn half square triangles. This is a method that I learned from Beth Helfter.  Every half square triangle can be a different color.  She gave a talk at our quilt banquet and I bought her book that is called Oompah.  IMG_2531Her company is called EvaPaige Quilt designs.  You can find several you tube videos on the Internet that show this method.  It’s an easy method. Just take one step at a time.  I needed a lot of half square triangles so I chain stitched ten units and then sewed several together when they became long.

IMG_2532    IMG_2533

I have the ruler that Beth recommends, but it is in N. H.  The Tucker Trimmer is here, so I used it.  The half square triangles trimmed out to 2″  There was just a little waste. I did have to cut the plain squares down to 2″.

IMG_2536While the quilt looks as if the color was random, the center light design of the quilt consists of carefully chosen fabrics.  When they are put together, there is an orderly arrangement.   I decided to make the center first.  Now, I can make the other nine patches and not think about color choices.  When they are all made, I can put them together.  The quilt is 10 by 10 blocks, so I have 96 more to make.  I can make a few at a time when I feel like some easy sewing.  I have enough split blocks and it is just a matter of trimming all the pieces down and sewing them together.

The original quilt was 80″ x 80″.  It was made in Pennsylvania in the 1920’s.  This one will be a bit smaller.  The center is 60″ x 60″, with borders of 2″ and either 3″ or 4″.It’s still a good-sized quilt.

The “what if” quilts are a lot of fun to make.    

Have a great day and happy quilting.


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