Friday, April 12, 2013

String Fever: Stacks & Stacks

Ready for some more inspiration for Scrap Attack {String Fever}?  If you're just arriving, checkout the quilt-along and join us for a festival this May!

Strip scraps (long, narrow pieces of fabric) lend themselves to a series of tried-and-true classic styles like log cabins, coin quilts and the simple string block.  I thought it would be fun to start off my weekly series on string ideas with something a little more modern, a little unexpected.

When surfing my Patchwork Pinterest board and Flickr Favorites, I came across these examples of the Stacked style.  In this case, strings are stacked continuously across the quilt, in blocks or long rows with jagged edges.  It's simple, but effective.

stacked books quilt (trust circle)

This beauty is by Svetlana at S.O.T.A.K. handmade in conjunction with the Trust Circle of do. Good Stitches.  It's the Stacked style in its simplest form.  It looks like they cut strip scraps to a standard width and then added white on either side of each strip to bring each one up to the width of the columns.  To avoid measuring, you could sew longish white strips to either side and then trim to the desired length once strips are sewn together to make a block. Use white trimming scraps for future blocks!

Bookshelf Quilt

Turned the other way, and aligned at one end, the Stacked style looks just like books.  This Bookshelf Quilt was made by Beth Ward for a retiring librarian.  How perfect is that?

I'm in love with this bookshelf-esque quilt, which reminds me of something from Emily Cier's Scrap Republic (which we talked about during last year's Scrap Attack).  This particular quilt was made by readers at The Last Piece to commemorate someone special and the design is in Sarah's new book, Hand Quilted With Love.  It was inspired by the bass lines on a stereo.  It's such a great way to use a bunch of colorful scraps.  Bringing them all in line at one side creates a sense of order despite the wild colors!

Stacked Rainbows

You can also intentionally and evenly stagger the stacked strips to create a staircase effect.  I made this block for a Faith Circle project.  Looks like a rainbow sound wave?

Pillow talk swap 9- top done.

Along the same lines is this uber-cool pillow block by Jessica at A Little Gray.  Don't you adore how she used low-volume prints for the background?  Yes!  Yes!  You can make diagonal joins much in the same way that we join binding strips.  I'm sure there's other faster methods too, involving cutting a stack of strips on the diagonal.  If you know a tutorial, share the link!


Jessica was actually inspired by this patchwork created by Cinzia of deux petites souris. Cinzia had shared this in the Scrap Attack flickr group during our last Scrap Attack and both Jessica and I pinned it.  Great minds!  Cinzia constructed hers in blocks, which is more user-friendly for a large quilt.  So pretty!

Alrighty then, I hope that puts your mind a spinning!  Do you have something in process?  You're invited to share your String Fever work-in-progress at the Flickr group.  Which reminds me, I need to go visit....


  1. Great string quilts that for sharing.

  2. I like all those different strippy possibilities. I once read about the last pattern, but don't know where. I will try this simple explanation: make two triangles in contrasting colors, sew together into square. Cut in 4 strips. Change places: first strip last etc. and sew back together again, done! Does this make sense to you?

  3. no string project in progress here. 'Though I wished I could. At the moment it's better not to start something new. But I will make something sometime...

  4. Great inspiration Rachel and I'm very proud to have contributed to the bass line quilt.

    here you go Rachel. I FINALLY found the name of that pattern. Scrappy mountain majesties! So easy to make, many possibilities.

  6. That book quilt is AWESOME and just landed on my to-do list when I finally can start quilting. (I still haven't gotten to do anything with the curves class stuff yet - the baby is here now, but the day she was born, Hubby got a job offer that is moving us from Mississippi to Connecticut. That was quite a day! So getting ready to move has pushed sewing down the priority list yet again. ARGH!)

  7. oh I just saw your comment on my post. Of course I don't mind, thanks for linking! I did join those strips just like joining binding strips on the bias, and I was also thinking that there was probably some trickier way to do it :) But it definitely worked for a project that size.

  8. All I saw from the top quilt was stacks of books. It reminds me of Uni days when you sat in the library with towers of references all around you. The some bright cookie turned them on their side and put them all back on the shelf. I love these quilts and one is absolutely on my list now. Thanks.

  9. Hi Rachael thanks for linking- the pattern for my quilt on The Last Piece is in my new book, Hand Quilted With Love

    Sarah Fielke

    1. Oh, sorry for the mistake, Sarah! I'll update the post.


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