July 4, 2017

Week 17: Long Time Gone Sew Along | Checkerboards

Now that we have had a week for everyone to catch up it is time for the final push!

The checkerboards along with the sashing strips provide both fabulous fill-in and, at the same time, separation of the units we have made. I, for one, am really happy Jen figured this all out for the rest of us! Applause please!

About the Sashing Strips

Loyal Grainline Geeks would be disappointed if I didn’t mention that you can reduce stretching and rippling of your sashing strips if you cut them on the lengthwise grain (parallel to the selvages) instead of crosswise.  :)

On to the Checkerboards

You may recall that I shared tips and my techniques for making scrappy checkerboards back in week 6. The # 1 tip then is still the #1 tip. 
Remember that the gray squares in the diagrams are gray or whatever you chose for sashing. The white squares are prints and for most of us the prints will be darker than the gray, not lighter.  
So, keep that reversal in mind!

Substituting strip techniques for making checkerboards instead of cutting individual squares is obvious. However strip techniques usually equate with a limited number of fabrics in the checkerboard.  Scrappy strip techniques require a little modification. Mainly shorter strip sets and more of them! So excuse me, but I’m going to repeat how I made my scrappy checkerboard units:

All but one of the Checkerboards are 2, 3 or 4 pieces wide, and most are 3.  So I start by joining short strips of contrasting fabrics to long strips of my neutral. Typically, I want around 5-inch contrasting strips. I can get three Checkerboard units from each, but I had a bunch of end cuts from my Churn Dash blocks in the piece photographed so I worked with them.

Press toward the darker fabrics. No matter how you arrange them later, that is the best direction. Now you have many options. You can, from left to right in the photo below:

1. Cut them into 1-1/2 inch segments and join for Checkerboard strips that are 2 squares wide. (Eventually you need around 150 pairs.) I like doing several smaller groups instead of all at once, so I get more variety as I add fabrics.

2. Or I add contrasting strips. Press toward the dark and cut into 1-1/2 inch segments 3 squares wide with contrast on the outside.

3. Or I join the segments to another neutral strip and cut into segments that are 1-1/2 inches by 3 squares with the light squares on the outside. Shown at the top of #2 and #3 is a Checkerboard made with units from both strip sets. The seams oppose each other for "automatic pinning" because the seams were already pressed toward the darker fabrics.

4. Or I join 2-square segments end to end to make rows for Checkerboards that are 4 squares wide. Why not practice on the Checkerboard for Section 2 on page 27? If you're loving it, go ahead and make the Checkerboards on page 28 for Section 3. Those will be the next 2 sections you can easily finish.

More About the Checkerboards

Visit these other Long Time Gone Sew Along blogs, too, for tutorials, contests and other info:



Use the hash tag #LongTimeGoneSAL to share photos on Instagram.

Long Time Gone by Jen Kingwell. Copyright 2016 by Jen Kingwell Designs. Available on the From Marti Michell website, www.frommarti.com

No comments:

Post a Comment