Aunt Eliza’s Star

I’m an aunt, and my name is almost “Eliza”, though I can’t say I’ve ever gone by that name. People tried to call me Lizzy, Fluffy, Liz, EB.  I guess Elizabeth just has too many syllables.  It must be American custom to shorten everything…  Nevertheless, I like this block.  It is a classic design that is easily embraced with modern fabrics and designs.  This pattern is usually referred to as the Ohio Star.  In fact,  do you remember this block from my Night Star’s quilt?  An oldie but a goody.  The way you mix the colors and patterns give it an entirely different attitude.



Aunt Eliza’s Star uses a quick piecing quarter square triangle technique.   No “special” rulers are required.  As long as you have a straight ruler, you are good to go.  However,  I admittedly reached for my “Perfect Half-Square & Quarter Square Triangles” ruler from June Tailor. (Thanks for this gift mom,  I love it!)  It has quick marking and cutting guides and works great for squaring up the block after it is pieced.

Lucky for us, the pattern calls out larger squares than necessary for the finished hourglass blocks.  This means, that once you have your quarter square triangles pieced, you get to trim them down to be “perfectly square”.

This basic block takes 5 squares plus 4 quarter square hourglass units, pieced in 9 block fashion.  There are tons of tutorials on the web showing how to make quarter square triangles.  Maybe you’ve watched some of them.  Check this one out on the McCalls Quilting website.  It is very similar to what is described in the Sister Sampler Quilts book.

Also, here is a great description of the block construction, from GenXquilters.  I love how the bright fabrics look against the white negative space.




Color Story

I am working on new blocks from a pattern called “Sisters’ Ten Sampler” in the book Sister Sampler Quilts.   My mom is doing the same quilt, but we are both using very different fabrics.   Gen X quilters did a BOM of this quilt back in 2013 and posted some tutorials that look pretty good, so I won’t repeat here.

The fabrics I chose from my stash are from the Mormor line by Lotta Jansdotter for Wyndham Fabrics.   The prints are a 1950’s / Modern look and would make good home decor prints, but will be applied in some very traditional block styles.

Grandmother’s Frame is the first block in the pattern.  Each month I plan to make two 12″ blocks with an identical pattern, but play with my color selections.  The pattern suggests fussy cutting the center square from a print.

I didn’t have any good prints to cut, so I added some raw edge appliqué cutouts I created with some fusible web and my Silhouette Cameo cutter.

Mormor line by Lotta Jansdotter

Have you ever used the red glasses to select colors for a quilt.  I’ve always wanted to walk around a fabric store wearing some.  You can’t choose colors or hues this way, but it would certainly help with choosing more variety in value or darkness.

I chose my colors for the first block without using the red or green value finders.  I was surprised how close the value was for the bright pink and the washed out grey in the block using the red filter.  I think the pink is simply too close to red to work well.  In this case, the green filter is probably more accurate for the pink and the red filter is more accurate for the teal.

If I graded my value selections in Light, Medium, Dark, then here are my grades;

Pink:  Medium to Dark
Teal:  Medium to Dark
Grey: Light

Grandmother’s Frame #1:

IMG_8110     IMG_8107     IMG_8097

The second time around, I auditioned my fabrics with the filters.  Originally, I selected a yellow fabric for the rose and the corners.  However, the value of the yellow was too close to the light blue in the block, so the detail was easily lost or washed out.  I switched it out for the dark grey to give the block more contrast.    I also swapped the direction of values at the corners for the sister block.

Grandmother’s Frame #2:

IMG_8114    IMG_8106    IMG_8096

For my next block, I will show you the tool I am using and the references it makes to the color wheel for selecting colors.