Have you used a Jolly Bar on a project before? Jolly Bars are a Fat Quarter Shop exclusive precut. They are 5″x 10″ rectangle precuts. Today I get to share a new pattern from the Fat Quarter Shop using a Jolly Bar. Its called the Jolly Bar Bon Bons Quilt. Yum! You can find the free pattern here. Or the YouTube tutorial here.
I typically will use a white background when making quilts. I decided to try the opposite! I used one of my favorite floral prints from the fabric collection Smitten by Bonnie and Camille for Moda for the background. I used a Bella Solid White 97 for the Jolly Bar. (P.S. Its on sale this month!) This is my ‘go-to’ white. It matches all Bonnie and Camille prints perfectly!
I might have a little bit of OCD and I like my fabrics to all be facing the same direction. These kind of prints are called directional. So when you have a directional print like my background fabric, it can prove to be challenging. Here are a few things that I do to help me keep my fabric going all the same direction. First, you need to find the ‘correct’ direction. Sometimes I just decide on my own if I like the fabric one way verses the other direction. Other times I will look at a photo from the manufactures like the above pic.
Next I pick the flower (or other design element) I’m going to follow. I have circled the above flower that I picked. Now every time I cut out or sew together blocks, I check first to see where this flower is and make sure the navy portion is facing down.
Cutting can be a bit tricky when you are trying to keep your fabrics directional. I had to cut my background fabric two different ways. For example, one of the background pieces is 3 1/2″ x 7 1/2″. I cut a number of strips 3 1/2″ and then subcut them into 7 1/2″ pieces. The other half, I cut 7 1/2″ strips and subcut 3 1/2″ pieces. Does that make sense? Keep the piles separate and always look for ‘your flower’ before you sew them together. And guess what? My entire background is going the same direction! Whew!
If you have stopped by here before, you have seen me post about Fork Pins! They are amazing! If I am trying to match seams, I always use these. I have had to use my seam ripper less because these are so accurate. They hold both side of the seam so there is no sliding as I sew. If you don’t have some, you seriously NEED these!!!
I just love the way this turned out! You can really see the cute Bon Bons pop against the floral background. And if you look close, ALL of my background is the same direction!
A quilt swish is one of my favorite ways to show off a new quilt. And look at that cool pattern!
Thanks for following along today! If you haven’t given directional fabric a try, you should! I love the way a quilt looks when all the fabrics are going the same direction. Do you keep your prints directional when you sew? I’d love to hear!