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For those of you just surfing: If you like this quilt and have EQ5, EQ6 or EQ7, go get the Kaleidoscope Collection add-on CD. Start with the tan boxes at the end of each lesson to get all the pieces needed to complete this quilt.

What on earth were you thinking Andrea?

So I hope you’ve learned some tricks in EQ and EasyDraw after doing these lessons. There’s still a lot more to come, but I just couldn’t keep the quilt a secret much longer.

As I was drawing these blocks, I kept wanting to do more… go more complex. But that kept breaking the wedges into more than one section.

I was adding blocks to the traditional section one day and noticed something. It was one of the blocks I didn’t put in because the wedge was broken into too many pieces.

I had taken one of the plain striped kaleidoscopes and drawn lines parallel to the wedge-sides.

It started making triangles… lots and lots of little ones.

Then I noticed those triangles had the same proportions of the original wedge.

Oh no…

Could it really be that easy?

I know this is a kaleidoscope,… but could it also be my layout?

layout

I thought about it some more… and yes, it could really be that easy! If all the blocks were from the same library and printed at the same size… it is! Then they’re guaranteed to fit together!

I tested my theory and…

Voilá! I came up with this virtual quilt design…

Medallion by Andrea Bishop

It took me a month of long nights to finish the center. My husband even moved the sewing machine into the office/computer room so I wouldn’t get lonely sewing all the time.

This is what the actual quilt center looks like (click the image below for a larger view):

Kaleidoscope Collection by Andrea Bishop

Unfinished Kaleidoscope Medallion by Andrea Bishop

And yes, I used the Kaleidoscope Collection wedges printed from EQ6 to make every piece! See?

(Yes, I know I need to learn the freezer paper technique so there’s no paper to tear off… )

Medallion by Andrea Bishop

So here’s what I want you to do:

Find a big space to lay this all out. It’s going to be big. All our quilts will be similar, but have different blocks and different fabrics and different placement. It should be really cool to see a gallery of these.

  1. Take December/Month 1 - your favorite – and lay the 8 wedges side by side to form the center octagon.1
  2. Take January/Month 2- your 2nd favorite – and put each of the 8 end-to end with the previous 8 wedges.2
  3. Take April/Month 5 - the 16 Snow Squall wedges – and separate them into their pairs (8 are mirrored, 8 are not). If you didn’t mirror half, don’t worry… it will just make the quilt spin differently. There are no mistakes! Put the first 8 to the left of the points going around clockwise. Put the second 8 to the right going around clockwise. It may form a blocky-circle for you.3
  4. Now find the three groups of 16 wedges: February/Month3, May/Month6, and June/Month7 (which you may still need to make) Separate each group of 16 into two stacks of 8 (some may be mirrored or in different colors – keep those together).
  5. Pick one set of 16 and put them end to end with the Snow Squall wedges. Remember to do the first 8, then the second 8 and watch your placement.4
  6. Pick the next set of 16 and put them “in the corners” between the wedges. Do the first 8, then the second 8 and watch your placement.5
  7. Pick the last set of 16 and put them end to end with the wedges you just finished. Do the first 8, then the second 8 and watch your placement.6
  8. Take your 8 Poppy wedges from the March Poppy lesson and put them in between the set of 16 you just placed.7
  9. Take your 40 plain wedges and fill in the holes to make a complete octagon.8
  10. Now it’s laid out… but you still have to sew… ack!Think in ROWS… and do one row at a time.Skip the center and go to row 2.I
    know you probably have more experience sewing than I do, since this is my second solo-quilt. But, if there are any other beginners out there, here’s what I did.To put two wedges together, I picked up the pair in the same orientation in which I had them laid down. I folded them RIGHT sides together along their common edge. I stuck a pin through the corner of the solid seam line into the corner of the solid seam line that I was trying to join it with. I did that at both ends and then wiggled the pieces/pins until it was nice and flat and tight. Then I started really pinning down that edge and removed the two loose pins from the corners. Before sewing… I unfolded slightly and took a peek to make sure the triangles were going in the right directions so would unfold correctly. I sewed the seam and took out the pins, then repeated the process to finish out the row. Once the row was finished, I laid it back in place with the other pieces.I recommend doing the same joining process for the other 7 rows that are the same.9
  11. Then start on row 3. Do all eight row 3′s.
  12. Then start on row 4. Do all eight row 4′s.
  13. Then sew the rows together into eight big wedges.
  14. STOP!

At this point, take a break and take a picture. Email the picture to webmaster@electricquilt.com and let me know your name and add a blurb if you want either about the fabrics you chose, the surprise… whatever. I’d love to see it and share the picture and your story online in an EQ kaleidoscope gallery.

Don’t sew your 8 wedges together yet. I know you’ll be really tempted to, so you can see the center well… but don’t. If you’re a beginning sewer and want to keep it easy, you’ll be limiting your border choices. If you’re an advanced sewer, you’ll be stuck with lots of Y-seams when you see what layouts I have planned.

Next month we’ll start planning layouts and borders. I’ll show you some cool tricks in EQ and some geeky-math things.

-Andrea : )