Once again I love the versatility of rainbow fabric. From one piece of fabric, I was able to make a block that required 8 colors!
This was the starting point: 1” octagon, small triangles and the technique from my Loving Hugs pattern series.
The second row of triangles added.
And the third row.
A fast growth in scale of the block…
The final block measures 14”.
You could make a few blocks and join them into a table runner, or a few pillows, or make more and sew a big quilt.
I wanted to test a new interfacing and I turned this block into a BEAUTIFUL bag -more about it soon!
Last year I made a similar block (see below – I stitched only two rows of triangles around the center octagon) and I had a problem!
What color to use for binding? Nothing from my stash seemed appropriate, so I chose to not bind it at all.
I love the shape of the octagon, sometimes you want to keep it (instead of turning it into a square) so here is how I finished this coaster. The usual technique used for this is simple and easy and I think most quilters know it. I just added a little detail that ensures perfect edges of the piece!
Here is what you need to do, if you want to follow this technique.
- your octagon block
- a piece of batting, the same size as your block
- backing fabric, 1½” wider and 1½” longer than your block. I used a solid fabric (to keep the directions clear), but a beautiful print fabric would be better.
Cut your backing in half. Put the two sections right sides together; sew the long edges with 1/4″ seam allowance, leaving a few inches unstitched in the center (long enough for easy turning the piece to the other side).
Layer your block with batting and quilt your block as desired. Yes, you can quilt only through the two layers, my machine has no problem.
If you prefer quilting through the backing, too, then just stitch all around the octagon, at 1/8” from the outside edges of the octagon.
Trim the batting even with the top.
Here is my quilted piece.
Center the quilted (or unquilted) top+batting over the backing, right sides together.
Sew along all the edges with 1/4” seam allowances.
Trim off the excess backing, using the top piece as a template.
Clip the corners.
Turn the piece right side out through the gap in backing.
Flatten the piece, making sure you have nice edges and corners. Press the edges.
Close the gap in the backing, stitching by hand.
If you did not quilted the top+batting, quilt now through all the layers.
Isn’t easier to use a single piece of fabric as backing?
You could use only one piece of fabric for the backing (the same size as the front fabric). In this case, the gap needed to turn the piece right side out will be on the edge of the piece and you will have to finish the edge stitching by hand (see the picture below).
I prefer to have the gap on the back of the quilt, this ensuring PERFECT edges stitched by machine!
I LOVE my little rainbow piece.
I hope this is helpful!
This no binding technique works on any shape! Actually, it is the best (and easiest) to use when you have quilts in unusual shapes (see the pictures below).
If you want to learn how to sew the rainbow blocks above, click below.