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Thread: Best size for log cabin strips?

  1. #1
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    Best size for log cabin strips?

    I am making a log cabin quilt that will measure between 95"- 100" square. I was wondering what size strips do most of you like to use. I have Eleanor Burns log cabin book and she give the instruction for 2 1/2 " strips. The quilter who taught me to make them has always taught to use 1 3/4" strips. I know that the thinner strips look nicer but there is more to cut and more to sew which end up with smaller squares.

    I have been commissioned to make one and have never made one with the wider 2 1/2 inch strips so I don't want to spend too much time on it. I will start cutting the strips tomorrow. I would really like to see your comments on this thread.
    Last edited by mamagrande; 12-12-2018 at 10:32 PM.

  2. #2
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    I am planning on making my first quilt. Happens to be a log cabin quilt as well. So, I’ve been doing my homework. Researching the enormous variations of patterns. Are you planning to go with the simple log cabin pattern? Most I have come across are 2.5” strips. However, I think I did stumble across a few patterns that are wider if that’s what you’re looking for. I’ll have to check my “book marks” and get back to you.
    I am currently trying to find out if it’s possibly to incorporate “upholstery” fabric into mine. I’d like the middle square, the outer edge, and back of the quilt to be the same fabric as my best friends couch to match. Just a throw size. Perhaps a bit ambitious for my first quilt project. So I’m thinking about starting with a 4, 12” squares as throw pillows?
    I’ll get back to you soon with wider log cabin strip patterns!
    regards,
    jess

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    Here’s a list of patterns. Not sure how helpful it’ll be. Unfortunately, there are no preview pictures. You have to go through each one. Also, they don’t give measurements. Hopefully, it may provide you with a spark of inspirational ideas!

    http://www.tonibest.com/cdn/17/2011/797/

    I’ll keep looking!

  4. #4
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    It depends on what you want the end result to be. The first log cabin I made I used EB book and 2 1/2 inch strips. It was nice and very traditional. I really like the log cabins made with narrower strips-more interest. I also like those that use different width of strips-wider for the color portion and narrower for the lighter side because they give a curved look to the patchwork. Judy Martin has one like that in one of her books-I hope to make it one day.

  5. #5
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    https://static.fatquartershop.com/me...es-Pattern.pdf
    https://youtu.be/Imk-eRHPwmk

    https://www.thesprucecrafts.com/easy...attern-2820934
    for the jelly roll, I believe it takes 4 to make a king size!

    Hope these are helpful to you in some way. When you’re finished I would love to see how it came out and how you decided to make it! Best wishes to you!

    May your holiday season bring you and yours good health, success, fortune,happiness, joy, and, love!

    Aloha!
    jess

  6. #6
    Super Member Battle Axe's Avatar
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    Be careful of the actual widths of the strips on the jelly roll. One of my UFOs is a gorgeous jelly roll of Northcott that was not all 2 1/2 wide.

  7. #7
    Senior Member tallchick's Avatar
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    First picture I used Marti Michell ruler for 2.5 inch strips, and they finished at 12 inches. A King size quilt that went together in less than a week.

    2nd picture is a curved log cabin I made using the creative grids ruler, I used a jelly roll for the color and the the background is cut at 1.5 inches wide to achieve the curved look.

    I loveeeeee log cabin quilts, the most accurate method I have found is Marti Michellís way and her rulers make it quick and easy. Good luck with your quilt and donít forget to share your pictures !
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    Lisa

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    @tallchick i absolutely adore the 1st you posted. Where can i Find more info!

  9. #9
    Power Poster feline fanatic's Avatar
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    I actually prefer nothing wider than 1 1/2" strips for Log Cabin blocks and when I make a curved LC I use 1" strips as my skinny logs. But you can make them any size you like. I think it is not so much better as personal preference for the look you want.

  10. #10
    Senior Member tallchick's Avatar
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    Here is a series of 4 videos that demonstrates the Marti way.

    https://youtu.be/tNdcNbsLXA4
    Lisa

  11. #11
    Senior Member MissSongbird's Avatar
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    I've made a handful of log cabin quilts and I do believe I've used 2 1/2 in strips for most of them, but I did just make one with like 1 1/4 or 1 1/2 in strips (I can't quite remember) and it also looked great. It totally depends on what kind of look you're going for. I would draft out some blocks using different sized strips to see what you think would look nice for your project.

  12. #12
    Super Member SusieQOH's Avatar
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    I made a King for our bed this past summer using 2.5 inch strips. It went really quickly and we love the results.
    Let me find it for you.

    Here it is: sorry it didn't come out upright.
    https://www.quiltingboard.com/pictur...d-t298911.html
    Last edited by SusieQOH; 12-13-2018 at 06:23 AM.

  13. #13
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    Mahalo Tallchick!

  14. #14
    Senior Member tallchick's Avatar
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    Mele Kalikimaka, Hau’oli Makahiki Hou Tikiohana
    Lisa

  15. #15
    Power Poster dunster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by feline fanatic View Post
    I actually prefer nothing wider than 1 1/2" strips for Log Cabin blocks and when I make a curved LC I use 1" strips as my skinny logs. But you can make them any size you like. I think it is not so much better as personal preference for the look you want.
    My thoughts exactly. If you go for a scrappy look, I think the narrow strips work best. I would use wider strips only if making a LC that was very color-coordinated, like the black/grey/red one above. You're right that the wider strips will go together much faster.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by dunster View Post
    My thoughts exactly. If you go for a scrappy look, I think the narrow strips work best. I would use wider strips only if making a LC that was very color-coordinated, like the black/grey/red one above. You're right that the wider strips will go together much faster.
    An aha! moment! I made a few scrappy log cabin blocks with 2-1/2 inch strips and they looked too bland to me. But narrower strips and more colors per block would be much more interesting to achieve that scrappy look.

    I'm a relatively new quilter and have learned so much from you all!

  17. #17
    Super Member karenpatrick's Avatar
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    I have a log cabin ruler that has you cut 2 inch strips. I've only used 2 inch strips.

  18. #18
    Super Member Ariannaquilts's Avatar
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    I am making the Orion Star quilt by Eleanor Burns and because I don't want to be doing a lot of narrow strips I am doing the 2 1/2 inch goes faster and since the block is 16 inches it works for me.
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    Maria
    Always be true to yourself!

  19. #19
    Super Member wesing's Avatar
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    This is the only finished LC we have, using the EB method and 2.5" strips. I have another top done, but it isn't quilted. It's multi colored on one side and white on the other.

    https://www.quiltingboard.com/pictur...n-t179856.html

  20. #20
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    oooh. I love the fabrics chosen for the Orion Star. Very nice!

  21. #21
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    I purchased a precut log cabin table runner from Jordan fabrics (love it by the way) and measured the width of the strips. They cut theirs 1 7/8 inches.....I'd round up to 2 inches myself.

  22. #22
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    Many folks use 2 1/2" strips because of precuts and because it is an easy size to use. BUT - you can use whatever size you want. I have seen some great looking quilts that have giant logs and some made up of very tiny logs. What are you most comfortable with? If you like to do a quilting scroll in each log, then perhaps a 3" or 3 1/2" cut strip would be better. What is your stash full of? If smaller bits, then use a narrower strip. If you use the 'darker' side as a 2 1/2" and the lighter side as 1 1/2" strips, you will get the curved log cabins. Always remember - IT IS YOUR QUILT and YOU get to make the decisions.

  23. #23
    Super Member QuiltingNinaSue's Avatar
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    Back in the 80s, we made a log cabin for dh SIL, husband cut, I pressed and his sister visiting us sewed on the machine. With E. Burns pattern, we completed the top in one day. Second day, we tied it with DMC floss so the SIL could get it hand quilted by Amish in the community. No, we did not get a picture back for our records, so I cannot share a picture of it. We spent $75.00 on fabric for it, King size, back then.

  24. #24
    Super Member luvstoquilt301's Avatar
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    I really love 2 inch strips. Not too fiddly but not really tiny either.
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