Log Cabin Tutorial
Special thanks to CJ AKA Homesteadmamma
- 4 light colored material
- 4 dark colored materal
- for your centre, you'll need either red or yellow (your choice)
First we need to make sure our material is washed and dried as we did in our other blocks. Once pressed, we then need to cut off the selvage edges on our material, if you haven't already done so. I'm going to give you a link to check out for washing, pressing and trimming instructions so that I don't have to repeat all the pictures again. Please make sure you have done this before starting this block Please check quilting prep 101 and the Nine patch tutorial to read prepping instructions.
When finished, your block will measure 10 1/2 x 10 1/2 inches square and should look like the following picture.
Take your red or yellow and cut it to make a 2 1/2 inch square.
Now, your going to cut strips, 1 1/2 inches wide. Cut the full length of each fat quarter. Cut 4 light and 4 dark, just as in the following picture. Don't be afraid of color. Once the strips are together, its amazing how colors just fit.
A couple of tips:
~I always cut the strips long because I chain sew them. I place the strip on the block, sew just until I get to the end of the block, add another block, sew and continue to do this until I get to the end. It saves on thread doing it that way. I also always do more than one block so I have enough material cut. You will have extra pieces of material - put those aside for your next log cabin block. Once you've done one, your going to want to do more.
~It is sometimes hard to keep track of your lights and darks. If you especially want them all your blocks the same and not scrappy, place them on a clothes rack, clothes hanger in the order you will sew them in. Its much easier that way to keep track of your light values and your dark values.
At the end of this tutorial, I will give you all the amounts you will need for 10 blocks or to make 80 blocks.
Take your 2 1/2 inch block, and your lightest strip of your light color. Sew, making sure both good sides are facing together. Then press as in the following picture.
tip - once the strip is sewn, make sure you cut it, using a ruler with your rotary tool. Don't cut with scissors or haphazardly because your strip will be crooked, thus making your whole block crooked. You want to start with it straight and continue to keep it straight all the way through.
Again, take the exact same strip of light material, and sew as in the following picture. Some of these pictures are light because of the light colors being used. Hopefully you can see the pictures well enough.
tip - throughout the log cabin block, you are turning the block, so always remember once you've pressed it, to lay it the right way beside your sewing machine. ALWAYS REMEMBER, you will have 2 light of the same color, next 2 dark of the same color, next 2 light of the same color, until you get to 4 light and 4 dark.
Once pressed, your block will look like this.
Take the lightest of your dark colors, and sew, exactly as in the following picture.
tip - always make sure your pressing your seams and always the exact same direction.
Do the exact same thing again.
Take your second lightest color and sew. Once sewn, press.
Do the exact same thing again, with the same colored material. Press.
Take your second darkest color, sew and press.
Take the same strip and sew once again, pressing when finished.
Take your third lightest color, sew and press.
Do the exact same thing again, pressing when finished.
Take your third darkest color, sew and press.
Do the exact same thing again, with the same strip, sew and press.
Take your darkest light, sew and press. Do exactly as you have with the other colors, so your block ends up looking like the following.
Do the exact same thing with your darkest strips, sew and press. Your block should now look like this.
Once your block is finished, the back should look like this (nice and neat).
Take your block, pressing the front lightly and square it off (you've done this already in all the other tutorials), making sure it measures 10 1/2 x 10 1/2. If its off a bit, its okay. If its off more than a 1/4 of an inch, you need to start over.
I'm now going to give you the amount of material you would need should you want to go ahead and make a log cabin. This comes in really handy, especially if you plan on using the same 4 lights all the way through and the same 4 darks all the way through. My first couple of log cabin quilts I used this. Now I venture out and use different hues of lights and the same with the darks and have also done a scrappy log cabin quilt.
Using the exact same sizes as I've used, 1 1/2 inch strips and 2 1/2 inch centre block. Using 4 lights and 4 darks.
For 10 blocks
Centre - 1 strip (10 cm) tip Here is where you want to be saving either red or yellow pieces of material. Whenever I use a read or yellow in another quilt, I always make sure I cut a few 2 1/2 inch blocks, thus never having to go out and purchase material specifically for the centre block. I keep them in a plastic bag. I mark on the outside exactly the size of blocks, thus saving me time when I go to do a log cabin.
tip - the numbers will be lightest to the darkest
light 1 - 1.5 strips (10 cm of material)
2 - 2.5 strips (10 cm)
3 - 3.5 strips (15 cm)
4 - 4.5 strips (20 cm)
dark 1 - 2 strips plus 4 inches (10 cm)
2 - 3 strips (15 cm)
3 - 4 strips (15 cm)
4 - 5 strips (25 cm)
for 80 blocks
Centre - 4 strips (30 cm)
light 1 - 12 strips (.5 metres)
2 - 19 strips (.8)
3 - 25 strips (1 m)
4 - 35 strips (1.4 m)
dark 1 - 16 strips (65 cm)
2 - 24 strips (1 m)
3 - 32 strips (1.3 m)
4 - 40 strips (1.6 m)
tip - These are exact cuts. Add 10 to 20 cm per cut.
For the binding you'll need 1.5 m.
Another tip - When it says to add 10 to 20 cm per cut, that is so important. You may cut a strip crooked and then when you need more material, go back and there be none. ALWAYS remember, there is no waste in getting extra material. You can always use it in another quilt. Whenever I purchase material for a specific quilt (which isn't often because I most use fat quarters now), I add extra yardage. Its far better to be safe than get 3/4 of the way finished on a quilt and you run out of the material you've been using all the way through.
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