The QM Scrap Squad is a select group of seven QM readers. They take one pattern from each regular issue of Quiltmaker and make their own scrappy versions to inspire you.
The featured quilt from the May/June issue is Ladder of Success, designed by quilting legend and early QM editor Judy Martin. We’re so pleased to feature Judy’s design as part of our 30th anniversary celebration.
Today’s featured quilt is by Jill Montgomery from Fairfield, Ohio. Jill blogs here, and you’ll hear from her in her own words below.
I was still working on the first Scrap Squad quilt when we got the pattern for this one. I’m thrilled to be able to say that I have made a Judy Martin quilt instead of just collecting her books!
I realized that I wouldn’t have enough of the tan and brown for the outer borders so I supplemented with two additional fabrics.
I cut everything out so that I could do a lot of strip piecing.
Piecing these Four Patches and the teal Nine Patches went quickly!
I was happy to be able to press the Four Patch strips to the side and then pinwheel the last seam when I joined them (shown above).
When I laid the quilt out, I thought the red was overwhelming the teal, and the tans from the animals were not showing up as much as I thought they would.
After trying a few other combinations and consulting with the Scrap Squad, I made a decision.
I have learned never to be afraid to make a mess in the studio.
The fabrics above were all potential border options that didn’t make the cut.
Once I had the fabrics for the borders picked, I could start piecing border #2. Most of the same fabrics from the teal Nine Patch blocks were used in a repeating pattern for this border.
I used the same trick on the Four Patches for the border. On the left is the intersection of the seam I just sewed.
On the right is the intersection after I ripped out the 2 or 3 stitches and then pressed the seam. One half of the new seam is pressed to one side and the other half is pressed to the opposite side. This technique leaves less bulk, which is better when you get to the quilting.
A closer picture of the fabrics and the quilting above—a simple stipple.
Here is my finished quilt! I’m happy that I went with the teals to balance out the reds.
The quilt was a “Happy Everything” gift to my friend Joanne Ahlers. I almost hated to give this one away, but I know that she will love it forever!
Another fun quilt by a talented Scrap Squad member! The take-away lesson from Jill’s experience is to listen to the quilt. When the brown borders weren’t working, she was open to other options and she changed her plan. It’s good to be flexible as your project progresses.
This wraps up the Ladder of Success quilts from the Scrap Squad. If you make a quilt from this pattern, please email a photo to firstname.lastname@example.org, or post the photo to Facebook or Pinterest. We’ll link up if you let us know.