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January 13, 2014

Quilting the winter blues away

ELLENBURG CENTER — Quilting a table runner is a fun midwinter project to beat cabin fever.

Pat Hanley recently led a workshop on the topic at the Lost Sheep Quilt Shop in Ellenburg Center.

It’s perfect for the novice and more experienced quilter.

One option is a log cabin pattern, which is sold at the shop.

“It uses fat quarters,” said Hanley, shop keeper. “Anybody who quilts knows what they are. It’s a piece of fabric that is 18 by 22 inches. It’s actually a quarter of a yard of fabric. On this particular quilt, you cut them into one-and-a-half-inch strips. Then, there’s a pattern you follow of the sequence. Log Cabin is a very old style quilting block, so it has been around a long time.”

The pattern features strips of fabric pieced around a center square.

“Quilting cotton on those fat quarters, you use three beige colors and three darker threads that kind of coordinate and extra fabric for those dark brown ones, rust color,” Hanley said.

“People can use any color they want. The big thing is have the medium and dark on one side and one that shows up through that diagonal stripe.”

Traditionally, light and dark fabric strips are placed on opposite corners of the block to create a stair-step accent.

“You have the center square and three rounds of each one,” Hanley said. “After you do the center square, you sew in rounds all the way round three times.”

The runner is made from eight blocks.

“The blocks are 8 inches square, and you sew those together to form that pattern,” Hanley said. “We put the borders on, and we sandwich it together to do the quilting. Then, we trim it and bind it.”

For most people, it’s a six-hour project.

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