Courthouse Steps Inspiration

Deb Heatherly and I are not only Creative Grids® designers, we are also friends. She has designed four of our most popular tools – Cat’s Cradle; Strippy Star, Turbo Four-Patch and the Ultimate Flying Geese.

We both travel and teach – and love to demonstrate Creative Grids®. My latest Cut Loose Press™ pattern, Log Cabin Nights, was inspired by one of her quilts – Steps to the Stars.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here is the story.  I was working on a king sized quilt and needed a final border.  I loved the way Deb combined Strippy Stars and Courthouse Steps blocks in her pattern. As a border, however, I needed a darker look that would frame the quilt and be striking when it was hanging off the side of a bed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I completed the quilt –  and loved the border. There was a long dresser in the room that was scratched on the top. What is a quilter to do? Make a dresser scarf of course – and Log Cabin Nights was born. Look at your patterns as inspiration and see what happens!

I just noticed a white spot on the top of the buffet….back to the sewing room.

The Perfect Scrap Quilts!

L8529There is a reason the log cabin block is the most recognizable quilt block in history.  This simple block can be pieced in a variety of ways to create a traditional log cabin; a courthouse steps, a half log cabin, or a square within a square – and they can all be trimmed with the 6″ Log Cabin Trim Tool!
These blocks are the perfect “Scrap your Stash” choice because the designs created are actually studies in lights and darks.  Simply sort your stash and start cutting strips!  If you choose to chain piece these blocks, they can be completed in fifteen minutes!

Log Cabin Quilts (#L8529) is a true labor of love because I wrote it!  Yes this is a totally biased blog because I love the tool – and the eight projects I created with it.  And the best news?  These projects used up about 40 yards of my stash – talk about a win/win!
The cover quilt features a square within a square log cabin version that is pieced like a Courthouse Steps block. That means you can sew opposite sides at the same time so they are very fast to piece.  I added an optional square of wool in the center of the light colored blocks to add texture.  The Grecian style border is pieced with the log cabin tool as well.

L8529_3A picture is worth a thousand words – so here are a few of my favorites.  This half log cabin quilt features a strip pieced border made with 2 1/2″ strips sewn into a tube.  Yes, the instructions are in the book and this is now my favorite border for ANY quilt.  If you like to work with wool, add the houses.  You can wait to decide until you piece the blocks because it is just as striking without them!
Three of the quilts in this book are twin size.  I have decided that at this point in my life, I am making quilts that fit beds!  But, it is easy to adjust the size to your needs.

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This traditional furrows setting for the log cabin block takes on a funky feel when the “furrows” are planted with wool circles.  These wool circles were a great way to use up my scraps of wool as well.  The border reminds me of the jacks I played as a child.  This border is attached to three sides of the quilt.  You may choose to add it to all four sides but this was an easy way to teach my grandchildren how to make a bed!  They always know which end to put over their pillow.  Once again, you can choose to leave off the wool, but in this case, it is hard to resist!

L8529_1The other projects include two table toppers; place mats, a framed picture, and three floor pillows.  All of these projects would be perfect classes.  Start with the 24″ floor pillows.  They make great gifts and are the perfect introduction to show your students how to make a traditional log cabin, a courthouse steps, and a half log cabin block.  I backed them with Shannon Suede which gave them a professional look.  This fabric is 56 – 58″ wide and comes in a variety of colors in 10 – 12 yard bolts.  What a great way to introduce your customers to this fabric!

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The six inch log cabin trim tool (Item #CGRJAWMN6) as a stand alone product or can be purchased as a two in one tool.  The Log Cabin Trim Tool Two (#CGRJAW2) combines two sizes – the six inch and twelve inch blocks.  Whichever trim tool you choose, the results will be spectacular!  And at just $18.95 the book is a bargain – that is roughly $2.00 a pattern.  Who can resist a bargain!