A good idea….

Whenever my family hear me utter the words “Hey, I’ve got this really good idea” they all groan and moan. They say they don’t want to hear my good ideas, but I think that’s only because it usually means their involvement in something that they hadn’t planned on or will take too much effort on their behalf. But, in my defence, my ideas are usually pretty good, if I do say so myself. After all, my ideas have led to things such as home refurbishments in our previous house, like taking up the carpet and replacing with wooden flooring, or garden landscaping ideas, or going on our skiing holidays to the NSW snowfields in years gone past, even though I did do all the planning and booking. But it’s all good.
So, I recently had a good idea about a quilt, as we do. I have always wanted to make a strip quilt – just sewing lots and lots of strips together in random patterns and colours. I could use up a lot of the brightly coloured fabrics that I’ve collected over the years and make it in a rustic style that is now my favourite: free cutting with the blade, varying widths of strips, curved strips, skinny strips and so on. At various times I had started sewing the strips together, with the thought that they would all eventually get joined up.

When I got the strips out yesterday, as well as the sections already joined together into larger pieces, I lay them out and thought about how to join them. I looked and looked.

Then I had this good idea. Why not cut the joined strips into 8″ blocks, and then join the blocks in a basket-weave pattern? Yeh.

I could cut the blocks so that some of them had a light fabric at least along one side, and then when I arranged them put those blocks towards the centre, so it was sort of showing a progression of colour from the centre out. I kept looking and re-arranging.

Maybe the blocks could have an outer round of black and white spot or checks? Maybe just a black and white strip on one side and create a pattern between the blocks? Maybe there should be sashing between the blocks? I moved the blocks apart from each other a little, to let the carpet underneath simulate what a sashing might look like.

Maybe, but not completely sold. Then I had a really good idea. Another quilt that I had always wanted to make was a spiderweb quilt. Why not use my already-assembled strips to make spiderweb blocks? While many patterns I had seen for these quilts were made by piecing the blocks by joining on strips one at a time to a paper foundation, surely I could adapt to use the blocks I already had?
I found a tutorial on the web that showed how to go about constructing kite-shaped templates for making a spiderweb block – it’s on Quiltville, which has lots of great ideas and quilt patterns, especially for utilising scraps.
Bonnie Hunter shows how to make the basic shapes that go to make up the string spiderweb, as below:

I could start with that and cut the pieces out of my already-pieced strip units.
Yay, what a good idea. I just have to work out what size to cut to make the best use of the already-cut blocks.

I’ll keep you posted.