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Thread: Need pattern instructions for strata? quilt

  1. #1
    ConcreteSher's Avatar
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    I took a photo of this quilt I saw at a quilt show in Hendersonville, NC, last Fall and I just can't get the idea out of my head! On the attached tag the creator of the quilt stated that she had been inspired by a quilt magazine article on "strata quilts." I have been unable to find anything similar with my on-line searches. It almost looks to me like the quilt is done with some sort of curved paper piecing.

    Any help out there? I'm envisioning an underwater scene with waves and fish . . . I already have all of the fabric . . . just no pattern and no idea how to begin!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails attachment-156631.jpe  

  2. #2
    Power Poster amma's Avatar
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    Strata means strips sewn together. Then there are various ways of cutting them out, to vary the blocks or cut them all out the same. :D:D:D

    Stratas is sometimes also called strip sets :wink:

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    Power Poster erstan947's Avatar
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  4. #4
    Super Member Prism99's Avatar
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    I don't think this is a typical strata quilt because the squares do not have repetitive fabric sequences in them. Here's how I would go about re-creating it.

    Start with a large rectangle of freezer paper. Draw wavy lines going in the same direction, using a permanent marker. Make registration marks along each line, so you can match up the pieces later. Label each piece in order A, B, C, D, etc.

    Cut the freezer paper along your wavy lines.

    Iron the wavy freezer paper pieces to your fabric of choice. Cut the fabrics 1/4-inch to 1/2-inch away from the edge of the freezer paper.

    Piece the strips back together. This is when the strip labels and registration marks will help you line them up. At this step, you have to decide on your piecing technique.

    What I would probably do is machine applique a la Harriet Hargrave, using glue to turn under the edge on one strip and appliqueing it on top of the seam allowance of the previous strip. (This is where it would be helpful to have 1/2-inch seam allowance on the non-turned under strip, although not strictly necessary.)

    Alternatively, you can piece as usual, pinning the strips together, using the freezer paper edges to help with accuracy, snipping as necessary so curves fit each other. I think this would be harder to do; however, might not be that hard as long as your waves are kept fairly shallow. With deep waves, you might have to piece in sections from first one side and then the other (because of the difficulty matching concave and convex curves).

    Once the wavy strata has been created, cut your squares out. These would be cut "on-point" (on the diagonal of the strata), and you would place your square template at different places all over the strata so that each square will be different. You would then remove the freezer paper before sewing the squares together.

    You might need to create several different strata to get all of the squares you want.

  5. #5
    Super Member Prism99's Avatar
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    Hmmmm. There's a similar alternative method that might be more likely. The maker could have started with freezer paper squares the size of the finished squares, marked the wavy lines & registration marks & labels on the square, then proceeded to sew each square as described in my previous post. In other words, she could have used the same technique on each individual square. I actually think this is more likely because it accounts for the non-repetition of fabric order in each square.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prism99
    Hmmmm. There's a similar alternative method that might be more likely. The maker could have started with freezer paper squares the size of the finished squares, marked the wavy lines & registration marks & labels on the square, then proceeded to sew each square as described in my previous post. In other words, she could have used the same technique on each individual square. I actually think this is more likely because it accounts for the non-repetition of fabric order in each square.
    Your smart! Your thinking and experience is wayyyyyyy above my head. :lol: :lol: :lol: I love reading your posts and responses...

  7. #7
    Super Member featherweight's Avatar
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    http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_no...ilts&x=21&y=25

    I think this is different then already posted.

  8. #8
    ConcreteSher's Avatar
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    Looking at your responses, I guess my original question could have simply been, "Is there a way to do wavy strata quilts?"

    Prism99, thank you for your detailed response! It sounds doable, but OMG the work and time! I also thought along the lines of making large, curvy, strata panels and then cutting the squares out on-pointe, but was just hoping for an easier way. I'm afraid doing it block-by-block might end up looking too "planned."

    Hmmmm . . . . think I need to take some long strips of scrap fabric and start playing . . . I'm guessing not much house-cleaning will get done today!

  9. #9
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    I've been playing a bit with freeform strata. They are cut with a rotary cutter, the edge is ironed under and then topstitched to the next layer. No freezer paper involved, no tricky curve piecing. Very simple and fun, and so freeing to let go of precision!

    The book that inspired me is Karen Eckmeyer's Layered Waves. http://www.amazon.com/Layered-Waves-...7007156&sr=8-1

    Edit: forgot to say, Karen works with either FQs or full-width lengths of fabric. FQ lengths are easier to handle than full widths (fit on the cutting mat and all that...). The full widths are worth it when you want really looong waves on your quilt; probably not so much for cutting the strata into squares.

    Hope this helps, and I'd love if you post pics! :D

  10. #10
    ConcreteSher's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by salmonsweet
    I've been playing a bit with freeform strata. They are cut with a rotary cutter, the edge is ironed under and then topstitched to the next layer. No freezer paper involved, no tricky curve piecing. Very simple and fun, and so freeing to let go of precision!

    The book that inspired me is Karen Eckmeyer's Layered Waves. http://www.amazon.com/Layered-Waves-...7007156&sr=8-1

    Edit: forgot to say, Karen works with either FQs or full-width lengths of fabric. FQ lengths are easier to handle than full widths (fit on the cutting mat and all that...). The full widths are worth it when you want really looong waves on your quilt; probably not so much for cutting the strata into squares.

    Hope this helps, and I'd love if you post pics! :D
    Thanks so much--I just went to Amazon and ordered the book. This is just one of those patterns/ideas that is stuck in my head, and I'm going to figure it out!

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