Tutorial Description

In this video tutorial from Deb Luttrell of Stitchin' Heaven, demonstrates how to make a beautiful quilt using the string technique.

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String Frenzy

Bonnie K. Hunter fans will love her newest book of playful string-quilt projects! Sew a dozen vibrant quilt patterns using the small leftovers from other projects for one-of-a-kind quilts.

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Texas On A String Quilt Kit

The stars at night, are big and bright, deep in the heart of Texas! This eight-pointed star string quilt is not like the one your grandmother used to make. It is a lot more sophisticated and a lot more fun to make. We are going to use a variety of fun wildflower prints along with a bandana and stripe just to mix it all up and have some fun.

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Texas On A String Quilt Pattern

The stars at night, are big and bright, deep in the heart of Texas! This eight-pointed star string quilt designed by Deb Luttrell is not like the one your grandmother used to make. It is a lot more sophisticated and a lot more fun to make. We are going to use a variety of fun wildflower prints along with a bandada and stripe just to mix it all up and have some fun.

The finished size of this project will be 76" x 76"

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Video Transcript

- Hey everybody, it's Deb Luttrell with Stitchin' Heaven and I have a got a really fun tutorial for you today. This is on string quilts. Okay, what is a string quilt? A string quilt is a quilt that you put together just using strings of fabric. They've been around for many, many, many years. This was a favorite back in the day. They're really forgiving, a lot of fun, and you can have a lot of different looks with your string quilt. The quit I have behind me is called Texas on a String and it's made using a fabric foundation and fabric center cut at an inch and a half. All of these fabrics are cut an inch and a half. And I'm gonna talk to you a little bit about different ways that you can do your fabrics. But with this quilt, let's get started. I wanna show you that you start with your foundation and what I do is I put my 1/4 inch sewing line from corner to corner and then I mark 1/4 of an inch away and that is my placement line, it's not my sewing line. So you take your fabrics and so I'm just gonna randomly take two of these strings that I have cut and I'm going to place them where I'm gonna just cut them. I need them to be a little bit bigger than what my 8 1/2 inch square is. So I just cut them and then I'll place right sides together and I put them on my placement line that I drew a minute ago. Then what I do is I turn this over and I'm going to sew... Well, let's see here. I'm not gonna turn it over, sorry. You sew from this side. So you're going to sew 1/4 of an inch away from where you placed your fabric. Hope that makes sense. And what it will end up being is you're gonna be sewing from corner to corner. You just keep your fabrics on that line that you sewed. Your first one is really the hardest because once you get the first one done, the rest of them are just automatic. So when you open this up, you're going to press it, doesn't matter which way, you're just gonna press the top one open. Just like that. Then you're gonna work on each side. So the next piece I wanna do, I wanna take one of my strings. Any of 'em will do. You don't have to cut these down ahead of time. What you wanna do is just make sure that they're a little bit bigger than what your square is. So I'm gonna take the next one and I'm gonna sew it on the right-hand side. Again, following 1/4 inch. String quilts are done a lot of different ways. Let me just show you this before I talk to you about that. So I've sewn that one. And again, I'm gonna take that to my pressing board and I'm going to press it to the side. Then I'll take a different piece. So you get the idea of what I'm doing here. Again, this one is going to be just a little bit bigger than my base fabric is. Now, you guys make sure that you don't scrimp and get it too close because you're gonna be squaring these down. And you wanna make sure that your fabric covers your entire foundation piece. So we're gonna again sew 1/4 of an inch out. Now some people do foundation string piecing on paper. I prefer to use fabric. When you use paper, the advantage of using paper is that you remove it. That's also the disadvantage, in my opinion. I don't enjoy removing all that paper. It makes a mess and I just as soon leave it in. Plus I feel like if I have a fabric foundation, it makes my quilt have a little more weight, if that makes sense. I just like the feel of a little bit heavier quilt when I do a string quilt made with a fabric foundation. So I'm cutting this one just a little bit bigger than my foundation square. Just start on the outside of the foundation. You're wanting to keep going. This is really very forgiving. If your 1/4 of an inch is off a little bit, it's no problem. When you put your blocks together, you can let that, these don't have to match up exactly on this quilt. There's some places that these don't match up exactly and that's okay. You don't really, really even notice it. I'm gonna have probably two more pieces here to do and I'm gonna ahead and do a whole one side of this before I show you what to do next. Then of course as these get closer and closer to the end, your sewing gets shorter and shorter. Again, this is really forgiving. Just you're gonna have fun with it. And you're gonna have something you've really enjoyed doing when you get through with it. We're gonna press this open. Yeah, and we're gonna have one more piece right there on the corner. Now, you can cut some pieces larger and only use, in the corners use a larger piece if you want to. And then you don't have the little small corners. But that's just up to you, depending on what you're doing. Now I think I can show you the next step without having to sew that other side. So, what you'll do is you'll finish this and you're going to go ahead and sew this side with strips as well. So you'll have this whole thing filled up with strips. Then it's very simple, you take a 8 1/2 inch square and remember that one that you sewed the first time from corner to corner, well that's what you square up to. So you have that corner to corner mark right there and you're gonna sew, you're gonna square this up to, I don't have a rotary cutter. We're go get a rotary cutter. And you're going to square this... Thank you. Okay, so you're gonna take your 8 1/2 inch square, you're gonna square it, you're gonna put your corner to corner line on the first seam that you sewed. And then you're square this up to an 8 1/2 inch square. Take all of that away. Then you just turn this. So you see, when you're finished with this square, because you squared it up, you have a perfect 8 1/2 inch square to work with when you go to sew this together. Now, my suggestion to you, if you're interested in doing a, a string quilt, is to get some books and look at the different ones that are out there. You'll get lots of ideas. Bonnie Hunter is a very good resource for string quilts. She's got a book called String Frenzy and it's just got a lot of ideas in it and a lot of information on string quilts. She likes to do string quilts with, Bonnie prefers the foundation, the paper foundation method, so that's different than this, which means when you do your string quilt on the paper foundation, you have to take the paper out. Another great book is a good book from Diane Knott called Strip Quilt Secrets and this is a great book for ideas for string quilts. I wanna show you this quilt that I did. I did this years ago and I love this quilt. I'm gonna show it here in the overhead camera because, let's see here, yeah, right here, here's my block. See if I can show you, yeah, right there. Okay, this is just a really, really fun, fun string quilt. What's different about this quilt is that it's still on foundation, it's still on the cloth foundation. And again, you guys, if you're gonna use the muslin foundation, get the very cheapest, most inexpensive finished muslin, cheap, cheap, cheap that you can find. That really works best. But what I did with this one to make it so much fun is I cut different widths of fabric. Where this quilt has got all of the strings are 1 1/2 inches, this quilt, all of the strings are all different sizes. So I was able then to put my bigger pieces on these corners like we were talking about, but there's a little small one here. I did like inch and a half, inch and 3/4, two inches, 2 1/2, all different sizes of strings. And then I just randomly put this together. And it turned out to be a very, very nice, cute quilt. Let me see if I can show you part of it. This is kinda what it looks like. So if you have a kid's quilt, if you like Kaffe Fassett, this would be a great way to use those fabrics. So, that's about it for today. I hope you enjoyed this lesson as much as I enjoyed bringing it to you. This is Deb Luttrell, Stitchin' Heaven. Please subscribe to our channel and you will get more information on what's going on and tutorials and interesting information through our videos. I'll see ya next time, bye-bye.