Pillow Shams in situ

Pillow Shams in situ

These are the pillow shams on my sister’s bed.  The quilt on her bed is a simple rail fence scrap quilt (shown on a full-size bed) I’d made sometime last year with a group of fabrics that had included a rose floral print in two styles (one larger than the other) and coordinating green, gold and cream tone-on-tone prints.  I added the bright red to it and the white.  I couldn’t find matching fabrics for the pillow shams, so I chose an all-over rose print that had the same range of colors.  As I was also in the process of reducing clutter, I gave my sister the crocheted-top pillow (it had been a shower gift from our oldest sister, Jean, back in 1992) as well as a number of knit t-shirts from Kohl’s that had shrunk considerably in the wash.  (Cabin Creek brand.  I never put them into the dryer, either.  I washed them on gentle and hung them up afterward.  They still shrunk.  This is one reason I don’t shop at Kohl’s any more.)

What you cannot see of the rail fence quilt photo above is that the bright red bits make a border all around the center blocks, and then all of the strips are used to create a “keyboard” type of outer border(shown here on my king-size bed):

RF - Marcy


I like the rail fence quilt block.  It’s  something that can be laid out in a plan or completely in scraps.  I like to use it as a stash-buster with my fabrics, but don’t let the simplicity of the design fool you:  true scrap quilts are a lot of work.

If you could see my craft room now (no, I won’t post a photo — it’s frightening!) you’d see how I’ve gone through leftover scraps as well as my fabric stash and sorted out various bits of prints in reds, greens, golds and black.  The are in a variety of widths and lengths.  I will cut down the true scraps first, then supplement with what’s in my stash.  Next I will have to decide what to do with some of the scraps that are too small to make a full “rail.”  I have small squares of fabric, 2″ x 2″, leftover from other projects.  Do I use them to start Log Cabin blocks, or do I use them to make stars?  Do I set them aside for something else, or do I discard them completely?

Design is mainly a series of decisions sparked by a fragment of inspiration.  It appears to be all scrappy chance, but it is not.  It takes some planning, but it also takes a lot of “grunt work.”  Even the color of the binding is a careful choice.