From the Archives: The Heat Is On! (AKA Riley Blake Basics Challenge!) - Published February 14, 2014

Heyo, everybody! Happy Friday to you! Also, Facebook is telling me that today is Valentine's Day, so there's that. 

ANYWAY. Here's a little project I recently completed that I thought I'd share with you. First, I am a member of the Seattle Modern Quilt Guild (holla!) which is awesome, and also means that we can participate in challenges that the national guild presents to us. The MQG's most recent challenge was the Riley Blake Basics Challenge, so we all got six fat eighths of Riley Blake fabric and we could make whatever we wanted with it! In true Becca fashion, I put it off until pretty much the last minute so I figured I'd better make something small. I've also been wanting to try a Quilt-As-You-Go (QAYG) project, so I decided to make a new cover for my heating pad. I am very pleased with how it turned out! 

So, here's the fabrics we got as part of the challenge. 

Lots of fun patterns and bright colors! The challenge rules allowed you to add any solid fabrics or other Riley Blake prints. I added some lighter gray, orange and yellow solids and then I chose an owl fabric for the focal point (which was not Riley Blake, so I cheated. Oops!)

To do a QAYG log cabin, you need to start out with strips, so I cut the fabrics into random-width strips and also cut a square of batting a bit bigger than my heating pad (1" bigger on all sides). 

To do QAYG, start with your first two pieces, lay them right sides together, one on top of the other, smack dab in the center of the batting (or wherever you want the center of your log cabin to be). Then you stitch along one side, using a 1/4" seam. You flip over the top piece and you should have both pieces of fabric right side up. Then you can quilt! I decided to just do straight lines, about 1/4" apart, and I didn't worry if they were perfect. Once you've done the quilting, you add another piece in the same way along the bottom. After you quilt that new piece, add another piece to the opposite side as your original piece. Then you just keep on going! 

Aww, I love that owl. As I continued adding pieces and quilting, my log cabin started to get a little crooked but I am okay with that. It's just a heating pad cover! But if you like yours perfectly straight, you will probably want to cut all of your strips with nice even edges and make sure to line them up carefully. After I finished the top, I added a back and a lining, using instructions for a basic tote bag from one of my sewing books, and I even put a little velcro along the top to hold it together. 

Before: UGLY.

After: ADORBS!

Did you make anything for the Riley Blake Challenge? We'd love to see them, or if you just want to see some fun projects, Google it - there are lots of pictures out there!