I love this mini quilt. I started this quilt last year when I started a much larger lone star quilt. I had never done a lone star quilt so I wanted to ‘practice’ on something smaller. I often practice new techniques in a similar fashion. I’ll make one or two blocks to see how a quilt will go together, or if a bag or some other project, I may make it first with fabric that I really don’t care about before I cut into my good fabric. Many times it ends up being a waste of time because (1) the pattern is so complicated I never want to make another one after the first (haha). or (2) because it goes together smoothly. Other times though, I’m able to find areas that need to be improved or find things I would do differently in order to save fabric usage.
I pulled this navy scrap with orange, teal, lime green, and purple elephants from my scrap bin and then found more scraps that complemented it. For the most part the placement of each color was due to how much of each fabric that I had on hand, but I wanted the points to be bright so that the star would SPARKLE. So orange was the only way to go there. I just love orange these days. It’s such a bright, cheery color.
I used this tutorial by the Hopeful Homemaker for piecing my strips. I did one thing different that I found to be very helpful. When piecing the diamonds, I first ‘basted’ the seams with a long stitch. I found that I often needed to adjust the seams just a smidgen in order for them to line up and it’s so much easier to pick out longer stitches. Then, once I was happy with how the seams lined up, I would stitch one last time with a small stitch.
One thing I didn’t do that I wish I had was starch all the pieces when piecing. I usually skip this step because I am impatient and want to get it done, but it really would have helped provide a much crisper, less puckered and wrinkled, finished star.
I decided to offset the star rather than center it on the background. It took me a few days to figure out how I wanted to quilt it, and I love what I came up with. First I marked and quilted diamonds to extend the star shape to the bottom and right.
Then I free-motion quilting the remaining areas with a paisley flower. I practice my FMQ every chance I get, and this was a very fun design to stitch. I just love it!
Then I decided the bottom right corner was a perfect place to put a small elephant. He’s so cute!
Quilt finishes at 17.5″ x 17.5″. Each diamond in the star is 1″ x 1″ finished.