Category Archives: Work-In-Progress

Bear Boston Commons Quilt

The Bear Flag displays seven colors: Black, Gray, White, and four shades of Brown.

Bear Flag
Bear Flag

I propose a Boston Commons quilt using this color palette. Let’s expand it a bit, though.

Expanded Bear flag palette
Expanded Bear flag palette

Two Blacks, three Grays, two Whites, and eight Browns should do it.

I joined my baby sister for a weekend quilting workshop some time back. We made a pair of Boston Commons quilts. I want to repeat the process, with improvements.

First, I cut the fabric into 3.5 inch strips and arranged them in order.

3.5-inch strips, arranged in order
3.5-inch strips, arranged in order

Next, I stitched the strips into a blanket.

Strip-pieced blanket
Strip-pieced blanket

When we made this quilt before, we used fat quarters cut into strips. The strips were stitched into a blanket, end to end. There was a fair bit of waste at the end of the blankets because the bottom edge was uneven. This time around, I left the strips unstitched for a couple inches at the bottom, and added new strips to the ends before stitching the strips together, creating one continuous blanket.

Uneven ends
Uneven ends
Continuous blanket
Continuous blanket

I picked up the second innovation somewhere on the Internet when I was first studying this pattern and different construction methods. I alternated the direction I pressed the seam allowances (in toward one strip, out on the next).

Seam allowances pressed in alternating directions
Seam allowances pressed in alternating directions

The blanket is cut into 3.5-inch strips. The strips will be offset before stitching. The alternating seam allowances allow for nesting them together neatly to stitch.

3.5-inch strips
3.5-inch strips
Work-in-progress
Work-in-progress

Woven Celtic Knot

First, I enlarge my chosen knot to use as a template.

Then, I trace each of the paths of the knot on fusible web, fuse to fabric, and cut out as separate loops.

Purple path
Purple path
Blue path
Blue path
Green path
Green path
Yellow path
Yellow path
Orange path
Orange path
Red path
Red path

Next, I use the printed knot as placement guide. I weave the knot from the bottom up, so I locate where the paths go “under” another path near the top of the knot and cut open the loop. I layer the bottom row of loops according to the guide, and pin through all layers (fabric and paper).

Bottom row layered in position and pinned to paper guide
Bottom row layered in position and pinned to paper guide

Then I weave the paths over and under each other, row by row. I pin the two layers of fabric together at each intersection, but not to the paper beneath.

Weaving . . .
Weaving . . .
. . . weaving . . .
. . . weaving . . .
. . . weaving . . .
. . . weaving . . .
. . . weaving . . .
. . . weaving . . .
. . . weaving . . .
. . . weaving . . .
. . . weaving . . .
. . . weaving . . .
. . . weaving . . .
. . . weaving . . .
. . . weaving . . .
. . . weaving . . .
. . . weaving . . .
. . . weaving . . .
. . . weaving.
. . . weaving.

Whew!!

The entire knot can be lifted and treated as a single unit at this point. I unpin the bottom row from the paper guide (keeping the layers of fabric together). There is no problem sliding the knot off the paper guide and into position on the background fabric.

Woven Celtic knot transferred to background
Woven Celtic knot transferred to background

I move the piece to my ironing table. I carefully remove all the pins. After a final check of “overs” and “unders” for each path, I fuse the knot in position. From here, I can zig-zag the raw edges, and embellish at will (possibly an embroidered design down the center of each path).