Monday, April 23, 2012

Dear Jane Rulers

 Years ago I decided to sew a ‘Dear Jane’ quilt and eagerly bought the two rulers designed to help centre and trim the two predominate blocks. One is an elongated isosceles triangle and the other is a five inch square ruler.
As the years passed by it became obvious that this quilt was going to be a very long term project. The rulers sitting on my desktop are a constant reminder of the blocks tucked away in a box with other WIP’s.
As I hate things to go to waste,  I decided to make two quick and easy quilts using the two rulers.
The instructions for the first of the quilts is described here for the lovely Jan because she always admired my quilt and is waiting patiently for the instructions so she can make one.

The 5” square ruler quilt 
In an old patchwork book I came across
a picture of an old lady with  a quilt on her lap. It was a top her grandmother had made and not finished.
This is such a simple design but is so effective, as simple designs can often be!

 All the fabric you need for this is scraps, but if you like to make ‘matching scrappy’ quilts like me you will probably end up going out and buying some more fat quarters.
Cut a 5 ½ inch square for the background square
 Press the square in halves twice and then unfold.
 Cut a smaller centre square 2 ½” square (in a contrasting colour)
You will also need a 1 ¾” square cut from freezer paper.

Centre the 1 ¾” square of freezer paper shiny side up, on the back of the 2 ½” square of fabric.
Press the sides of the fabric over onto the shiny surface and they will temporarily adhere to it.
Turn the square over so that it is right side up and centre it onto the background fabric square making sure that the points line up on the pressed lines you made earlier.
Fold lines horizontally and vertically through the square
  Pin and applique into place.  You can either remove the freezer paper before sewing down the fourth side or wait until the square is completely sewn on and cut away the fabric from behind (a ¼” in from the stitching) and remove it then.
Now we get to use our ruler. (This is why we cut the background square bigger than we needed). No matter how well we create press lines and line up the centre squares we will always move things out of wack a little.  Line up the two lines going vertically and horizontally through the ruler so that the four points of the smaller centre square fall on one of these lines. Now trim the block. The block of course is now 5” square and will be 4 ½” when sewn together.
Sew as many blocks as you want to make a quilt the size you want.
I used 169 squares, 13 squares by 13 rows.
My final border is sewn from strips cut 5" wide for a 4 ½” finished border.
As a finishing touch I hand stitched a pretty lace around the edge of the blocks.
Finished quilt is 172 cm X 172 cm.


  1. Love that quilt Penny - it is one of my favourites. The colours are great. Wendy x

  2. What a great idea Penny! Thanks for the instructions, might be another one on my "to do" list :) Sharon x