Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Drunken Chevron Quilt/Tutorial & a Giveaway!

 When I heard from Daniar at the Fat Quarter Shop asking if I'd like to take their challenge to make something I've never tried before for National Sewing and Quilting Month, I knew immediately what I wanted to make. 

A Drunkard's Path Quilt. I'd had this design floating in my head for some time, but just didn't know if I had it in me to tackle curved seams at this point in my life.  

You see, my MIL has recently been diagnosed with terminal pancreatic cancer (if you're a praying friend, please pray for her peace and comfort), and it's all been happening so fast.  Less than two months from her initial appointment to being home on's been devastatingly sad and still is if I'm being honest.. I wasn't even sure if I would finish this, but I managed it.. just in the nick of time.  It ended up being the perfect stress relief. Sitting and listening to the machine hum while processing this new reality.

So about a month ago, when Daniar asked what I'd like my personalized banner to say, I told her this:

Little did I know how true this would turn out to be.  Sewing up "Drunken Chevron" turned out to be great therapy for me.  The technique is so easy.  And NO curved seams!!!  And did I mention NO CURVED SEAMS? ;)

I figured out a way to make it work for me. Perfect for when you just want to sit at the machine, listening to it zoom along and give your brain a break from stress. Which we've been experiencing in abundance lately. But enough about that for now..let me tell you how I made this without a curved seam in sight.

I used lots of Notting Hill fabrics, plus some other prints from my stash. (these colors make me happy! happy as I can be right now anyway..) You will need (39) 10" squares (layer cake friendly), and approx. 1 1/4 yd. of the chevron fabric.  Make sure it has plenty of contrast.  I found that out the hard way the first time! Take three of the 10" squares and quarter them into 5" squares, and set them aside for assembly of the quilt top.

Here are the tools I used:

Yep, that's a 6 3/4" dessert plate, a frixion pen, and a glue stick. :) I didn't have any templates so just made do with what I had on hand.  First, I traced and cut out (36) circles.

Then, to place them, I marked the centers of both the circle and the 10" square by first folding the circle in half..

..then in half again..

..then marking each side of the point with the frixion pen..

..and then repeating with the 10" square.  Make sure to fold and mark the circle with the wrong side out, and the square with the right side out.

Unfold them, and run the glue stick around the edge of the circle..

..and then match the "v" marks and smooth it into place, right sides up. If a wrinkle gets in there, just pull it up and smooth it back out.

..and then applique into place (I used a zigzag stitch)..

..iron flat (frixion marks disappear!), and then pull the two layers of the circle apart up to the seam, separating the glued layers.

Make a snip in the back layer only, about a quarter inch from the stitching, making sure that you are only catching the back layer, and then cut out the back layer of the circle.

(You will have an array of colorful circles left at the end of this project for another project.) :)

When all (36) 10" squares are appliqued and trimmed, quarter them into 5" squares. (the block may be slightly less than 10" after applique, but if that's the case, don't worry, it shouldn't be too far off and will all work out.)

Mix and match the 5" (cheater) Drunkard's Path blocks and sew together into blocks like this (make 30):

Using two plain 5" squares that were set aside earlier, and six of the above blocks, sew together into five rows like this with the two plain squares at the bottom. (The direction of these rows will alternate in the final layout.)

Then make the left edge row and the right edge row like so:

                 -L-      -R-

Final layout:

It was a lot of fun to sew up, and it's super forgiving, b/c if your circles aren't exactly scientifically in the center, it's okay.  There are no points to match really, they are drunken chevrons after all. ;) No templates, no brain-exploding math.. no complicated tools. Just a dessert plate, a glue stick and a zigzag stitch.  Priceless therapy.

OH, and the FQS also had a list of questions that they wanted us to include and a free pattern link for you, so here goes:

1. How did you start quilting/sewing?

My grandmothers quilted, but my mom taught me to sew when I was younger.  She used to sew clothes. Then I took a sewing class in high school.

2. When was the first time you knew that you were a quilter/sewer?

When I made a skirt and a lined jacket in high school--quilting came later.

3. Do you have any sewing/quilting horror stories/faux pas?

Too many to list. :) My worst quilting story is my run-in with the rotary cutter and a huge gash in my finger. :/

4. What advice to you have for someone who is just starting out sewing/quilting?

Make what you love and never give up!

Thanks to the Fat Quarter Shop for including me!! If you'd like, head over and check out their Color of my Heart free pattern sheet.

Also, they have very generously offered to give one of my readers a layer cake of Moonlight Manor:

Just leave me a comment to be entered. **Giveaway Closed**  I will pick the winner on October 1st. :)

Happy Fall!!!!


Sherry said...

Prayers are going up for your MIL and the rest of the family.

Your quilt is lovely and I love the technique. Thank you for sharing.

charlotte said...

Your quilt is so pretty. I love the colors. I am glad you had this to calm you during this stressful time. Prayers for your whole family. This is tough, I know. Hang in there.

Betsy said...

I love it. My kind of quilt where I do not have to make sure the block is in the center. Love the color combo too!

Michele T said...

Sending hugs and prayers! This is the way that I would want to try making the Drunkards Path... Thanks for the tutorial!

shayne said...

Cancer is terrible!! Sorry about that!

Lisa Marie said...

I love your quilt and the fact that it brought you a bit of stress relief at a difficult time. Blessings to you, your MIL and all her family and friends.

Unknown said...

It comforts me to know that something beautiful can come from a place of sorrow. My thoughts are with you and your family. I always create something for my granddaughter who has a close-to-Halloween birthday, so this fabric collection would be perfect.

Stephanie said...

So sorry for all your stress and I will be praying for you all. It seems like everywhere you turn there is sickness these days. I am glad you got to take your mind of things and produce a wonderful quilt. I love it and the method, thanks for sharing!

Oh my goodness, I'm so sorry that your mother-in-law is suffering from such a terrible cancer. Please know that I'm sending up prayers for her and your family this morning.

Nedra said...

Thanks for a very nice tutorial Kelli :) And the prayers for your family continue.

Nupur said...

I love the happy colors of your quilt, and the technique is clever. Best wishes and hugs to your mother in law.

Hope your MIL recovers quickly. Hey if quilting keeps you sane, quilt away. You need to get rid of all that stress. Love Halloween, great giveaway.

Sorry to hear about you mom. It is devastating and will be forever. I wish peace and love to her and your family. May you all be as well as possible.

You're quilt is a lovely bright spot. Perfect colors and a beautiful way to check out for a bit.

love that quilt. maybe some day i can get tho that pattern.

Gill said...

So sorry to hear about your MIL
I love your cheater DP quilt - it looks much easier than all that curved piecing!!

Meagan said...

Not too intimidating for a beginner! And LOVE the colors. Praying for your mother-in-law and your entire family. Hugs from Texas. <3

I love the quilt - curves are so clever!!!

CJ said...

So sorry about your MIL - {{hugs}} to all. I love the photo of your quilt and what I can get from the instructions but for some reason I get no pictures of the tutorial. I have refreshed, reloaded, clicked on the black x's. Not sure how to get it to work. But thanks for the tutorial! I hope to use it someday.

Tori said...

That turned out fabulous! Thanks for sharing your method. I'll be praying for your family.

Janarama said...

Such a heartbreaking story about your MIL. Prayers to your MIL and the entire family during this difficult time. Your quilt is beautiful.

Vicki H said...

Prayers to you, your MIL and family. I am glad that sewing was helpful therapy. I love the method you used on your beautiful quilt.

java diva said...

Kelli, I'm so sorry to hear about your mother! I will be praying for you both. I wish I could give you a hug.

LA Paylor said...

I get your posts by email, love them. I also have a good time piecing a drunkard's path. I make a Halloween quilt every year, so this little pack is right up my alley!! Thanks for the chance to win
LeeAnna Paylor my contact info is:
leeannaquilts at gmail dot com

I'm apparently a no reply blogger and can't seem to correct it, so there you are...

Michele said...

It's beautiful, Kelli! I can see why it makes you happy. I'm so sorry about what your family is going through. What a stressful time. You, your MIL, and your family will be in my thoughts and prayers.

Kathy H said...

Very pretty quilt and I love the no curved seams. I can sew them pretty well but they take a lot longer so your pattern looks so much better. Sorry to hear about your MIL. Prayers for her and your family.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing this pattern. Finally, a pattern for Drunkard's Path that I'm willing to tackle. -- soparkaveataoldotcom

Rina Mason said...

Sorry to hear about your MIL. It's always hard when something like this happens to someone we love and even harder when it happens so fast because there is so little time to adjust. Sending prayers of comfort for your family.
Love your fabric choices and thank you for sharing this tutorial. I might tackle a Drunkards Path again using it. Much easier than curves.

Patti said...

So so sorry about you MIL. You indeed have my prayers. Your quilt is super!!! How sewing helps to calm us never fails to amaze me.
Thanks for the chance to win.

Beth said...

What a brilliant way to make the drunkards path!

Unknown said...

My prayers are with your MIL and your family! I have had something similar happen with my mother and My cousin, so I'm trying not to let it get the best of me so I can help them better. It is so hard sometimes and I pray a lot! Thanks for the giveaway, your quilt is beautiful!

Melody said...

So sorry about this difficult time for your family. Fabulous tutorial, thank you.

Lisa said...

I'm so glad you had this project to comfort you. It turned out so beautiful! I love the Halloween fabric, thanks for doing the giveaway :)

Praying for your MIL and the whole family - so difficult for everyone! Thank you for the great tutorial - your Drunken Chevrons is fabulous!!! Bless you.

i love this quilt! I love your saying too!! I will be using that! It is interesting how that's made.Thank you very much for your blog It helps me so much as I am very new to quilting!
Big Prayers & Love to you and yours!!

Your quilt is lovely, Kelli. Sending you and your family hugs.

Heidi said...

Quilting keeps me sane too;-) Super cheerful quilt, I hope it brings comfort.

Anita said...

I have been loving this color combination lately too! The quilt looks gorgeous and your instructions are easy to follow on this too. Thank you! So sorry to read about your MIL. I will say a prayer for all of you.

Carla said...

Fabulous! Love the setting

So sorry to hear about your MIL.. My dad passed away this past Feb from pancreatic cancer also.. we had him for an extra 9 months more than the original story was intended due to the fine work of 2 surgeons.. Thankfully he wasn't in pain for almost that entire time and we spent some very quality time together. The quilt is lovely and yes I 100% agree about quilting being a great stress reliever.. I took up the art about 1/2 way through the 9 months and it helped me tremendously.. and still does now

Good tutorial and sweet quilt. I am sorry about your MIL. I used to volunteer for Hospice. I am taking a break now. God bless you all.
Kathy Davis

Pat V. said...

So sorry to hear about your MIL. I think I will print out your saying and hang it by my machine...

Unknown said...

I am praying for you, your family, and your mother-in-law. May you all be filled with the peace that passes all understanding.

Your quilt is beautiful!

Vicki said...

What a fun quilt, and thanks for the tut! May the Lord be with your family during this very trying time.

GranChris said...

Your quilt turned out wonderful! Prayers are being said for all of you.

Unknown said...

Your quilt is magical!
I would call it oriental.

Lisa Lisa said...

Love your tutorial,Kelli! And, well, you and I have already spoken about your mother-in-law's situation. Still keeping her (and all of your family) close in my thoughts

Barbara O. said...

Thanks for this fabulous tutorial, it's really much easier than I though a drunkard's block could be.
Prayers for your MIL and for you and your family to cope with what happens.
And thanks for the chance to win.

Love your quilt - nice way to do Drunkard's path. Thinking of you at this sad time

Janie said...

Love the orange in your quilt. Thanks for the chance.

What a lovely quilt. Prayers for your MIL. Thanks for the chance to win.

Brenda said...

Prayers for your MIL and the family.

Your quilt tutorial looks good! I may try this! A drunkard's path has been on my to do list forever!

mb said...

so sorry for Mil. Prayers going out to you and your family at this time. thank you for taking the time to post anything at this time much less a giveaway,
Love the fabrics. mary

jeifner said...

It turned out great. What will you use your extra circles for?

I've never made a quilt, but the way you showed it through pictures, you make me think I could! Thank you for hosting a giveaway. (teatly at gmail dott com)

I love it! I've never seen the Drunken Path used that way. Would LOVE to win the Halloween bundle.

linny said...

Love your Drunken path Chevron quilt. Very innovative & great with no corners to match.

Kathy E. said...

Prayers for your sweet Mother in law...for peace and comfort.
I would love to win this bundle so I could make a fun table runner for Halloween. they are such fun fabrics!

Prayers for your family. I love the giveaway. I'm trying to do some Halloween decor for my grands.

Lee said...

Prayers for your family! Pretty quilt!! thank you for the fun giveaway!

Carla S said...

I love your quilt design. These Halloween fabrics are so cute- especially the owl one.

Julia said...

I love this quilt! And it looks like a layer cake and some extra fabric will work perfectly!

Renee G said...

Love the quilt - and love using any technique I can to avoid curves.

KathyinMN said...

I'm not into halloween fabric, so if you pick me, pick someone else for the fabric (seriously). I wanted to comment because this is just the bomb of an idea and makes doing a drunkard's path doable. And now I'm thinking that if you do that on a layer cake, you could do a second scrappy one out of the cutouts. Pinned that sucker so I can come back to this after I get through with my Christmas quilty stuff. Love it when people make hard patterns easy. Thank you for that.

And LOVE how you straight line quilted it. It really came out great.

Patricia said...

Praying for your MIL

I would love to win, my B-Day is October 31!

Patricia C

What a cool pattern! Prayers for your MIL.

Great looking quilt! Such a unique layout. Thanks for the tutorial.

Unknown said...

I want to send healing prayers to your Mother In Law. I hope it will be okay to add her to our prayer line. I know the power of prayer.

Great idea to get the curves, so sorry to hear about your MIL (((((HUGS)))))

Cute quilt. Praying for your MIL. Don't put me in the drawing, as I have way too much Halloween fabric as it is.

Jeneta said...

Oh Kelli - my prayers will be with your mother in law and your family. Your quilt is beautiful! And your tutorial is superb. I have only just discovered Frixion pens and am excited that you made this quilt without cutting out the circles on some kind of cutter (because I don't have one!). Love to you.

You and your family are in my prayers.

Cindy P. said...

What a wonderful way to do a seemingly difficult pattern! Thanks for the sharing and my prayers to your MIL and family.

Unknown said...

Sorry about your MIL, my mom died of the same thing. Thanks for the tutorial, I have not attempted curved seams yet either :)

Anonymous said...

Stitching is a wonderful way to escape the day-to-day things that tug on our hearts. Your quilt is so happy!

Sewgreen said...

I love how you did this. Thank you for sharing!

CA Bobbie said...

Thank you for sharing the tute,I'm on the bandwagon. Prayers are being sent up for your entire family. I was busy thinking ,
which fabric as I was reading. Hope to win. Bobbie at rjc@cam(at)gmail(dot)com

tbsnyder said...

My prayers go out to you and your family as you deal with the demands and stress of a terminally ill loved one, I have lost several family members to cancer, most recently my 63 year old brother and I know how hard it can be. I do agree that quilting can definitely be what saves you from coming apart at the seams! Thanks for the great tutorial for the Drunkards Path and I am now a new subscriber to your blog. Tracy

Unknown said...

Kelli I just love the happy colors in your quilt. I have a whole collection of these waiting for the right pattern, this may be it! Thanks for sharing your talents with us. Prayers to you and your family.

Colleen said...

Ingenious tutorial girl, thanks !
It's great to have something that you can be so immersed in that you forget about everything else for awhile . It's not selfish or uncaring because when you resurface you are more energized and focused. Prayers to your MIL and family.

Karrie D said...

Very creative way to get past the curve seams. Peace and comfort to you and your family.

betz2u said...

Thanks for sharing. Lots of prayers and Godspeed for your mother-in-law. Love your quilt.

Prayers of peace and healing to you and your family. Very pretty quilt and I think it's one I could make. Thanks for sharing.

sam said...

I will certainly keep you and your family in my prayers and add them to my church prayer list. The quilt is awesome. thank you for the pattern.

Joan H. said...

So sorry to hear about your MIL. We have a similar situation in our family with our son-in-law. Prayers and hugs are helping to carry us through and I offer the same to you. May God bless and uphold your family.

Unknown said...

I think I might just be able to do this. Love your colors. Lime green is one of my favorites, the pink is fantastic with it, (I usually pair purple with the lime but I'm gonna try the lime/pink combo it is so nice and bright. My prayers for your MIL.

Thank you for sharing your lovely quilt, and all of the helpful hints along the way. Crafting helps me relieve stress too and am glad that stitching this quilt helped you during a difficult time.

Jusmom1 said...

Praying for your family...for peace and acceptance. Thanks for the chance to win!

Jess Burns said...

I know what you mean about sewing to deal with the stress - that has been one of the main reasons that I have been making time to sew these days. (My FIL is dying, but not as fast as your MIL - I am sorry. :( ).

Jody said...

Prayers for your family--I like how you just jump in and do it--and your projects turn out so cute!!

Unknown said...

I am happy that sewing has soothed you and I really like your beautiful drunken path quilt. Pink and yellow are so gorgeous together. I am absolutely going to make it using your method - you are very clever to have developed it.

perry94022 at hotmail dot com

Boo! I've been feeling the need to stitch up a table runner for Halloween - this would be perfect!

Suze said...

I am sorry to hear about your MIL and all the events surrounding the diagnosis. Your quilt is very cheerful and amazing. Quilting is great therapy for the soul. Thanks for sharing so bravely your store and the wonderful, wonderful tutorial.

Kay said...

I love this tutorial, at last I will have curves without the worry. Sending prayers for you all, we are going through the same with my dad and I know how much prayers and love helps. x

Tiffany said...

This is genius. Thanks for the tutorial and for the awesome giveaway! Much love!

I love this pattern and most especially that you said to not worry about it if it's not exactly 10"...It will all work out in the end. That's my style of quilting! I knew we were meant to be quilty friends (outside our love of Buster, of course).

Great quilt, great tutorial, and prayers to your family and particularly your MIL! I pray for peace for all of you!

PS. No need to enter me to win...I have this fabric in the shop so it's at my fingertips if/when I need it :)

I love your color selection, so cheery. Prayers for you and your family.

Lori said...

wow your quilt is wonderful. thank you so much for the tutorial. Your mother in law and your family is on my prayer list.

Mara said...

Great quilt and tutorial, I am sorry to hear about your MIL, my grandfather died from that at the end of last year and my grandmother said she didn't want to live if he died and sure enough he passed away and all of the sudden she was diagnosed with a brain tumor, had a stroke and died a month later. I am praying that you get to spend healthy quality time with her before she goes.

boo to you...what an amazing quilt you have created...thanks for the great giveway

Peggy said...

Beautiful quilt, but it looks too complicated for my skills.

AlidaP said...

Lovely quilt with no curved seams!! thanks for the tutorial and for the chance to win!

Unknown said...

Thanks for the great tutorial! Fun way to put the drunkard's path together.

Sally said...

I really love this pattern and would like to try it. Thanks for the giveaway!

What a beautiful quilt and sending prayers your way!

Angie M. said...

Prayers for your family. This is lovely quilt and one I may even be able to tackle!

Blessing to you!

Allison said...

Beautiful, and love the lack of curved seams! Wishing for comfort for your mother in law and peace for you and your family.

Diane said...

I have added your MIL and your family to my prayer list. May God be with you in your time of such great need. And thank you for your tutorial! This quilt is beautiful and there are no curved seams. Genius!

Helen said...

Love your Drunkard's Path - gorgeous! And a neat tutorial to make curves easy.

I love your quilt, the colors are fabulous. Thanks for the tutorial, I will put that to good use. Thanks for the chance to enter your giveaway.

I love your quilt, the colors are fabulous. Thanks for the tutorial, I will put that to good use. Thanks for the chance to enter your giveaway.

Jetza said...

I love the fabric and the quilt. THanks for the tutorial I can try to make it :) I'm not a great quilter but still :)

Mary Ann said...

Prayers to your family during this difficult time. Aren't we blessed to have found a hobby that can bring ourselves and others comfort at the same time?

Jessica said...

I love the quilt that you made. It is so bright and cheery!

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