Tiny Wonky Stars

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Jenny shows us how to make an adorable Tiny Wonky Stars Quilt using 1 roll of 2.5 inch strips of precut fabric (jelly roll) and yardage. She also demonstrates chain piecing, finger pressing, and how to square a block.

Get the supplies here: http://land.missouriquiltco.com/tiny-wonky-stars

Video Transcript (Downloadable PDF Here):

Hi everybody, it’s Jenny from the MSQC. And I’ve got a really fun project for you today. This is one of those projects where you take a look at something you’ve already done. I did a big wonky star in a charm pack quilt, and you think, What happens if? What happens if I make those teeny? You know, what happens if I tried it? What happens if I put it on a white background? What happens if I put it on a black background? I love the What ifs? in quilting. And so we bring you today the Wonky Star Quilt. The mini Wonky Star Quilt. So let’s take a look at this quilt behind me. Isn’t this fun? Every star is different. Every star has its own personality. We’ve set them in between solid blocks which gives them that open feeling of just, you know, just being in space. It’s just a really, really fun project.

So to make this quilt what you’re going to need is one packet of 40 2 ½ inch strips. And of course you can use scraps. You can use anything. These are the strips I used. And these are called Magic Colors from Wilmington Prints. And they’re just a gorgeous line of fabric. You’re also going to need about 5 ¼ yards of background fabric. And that’s going to take of all your inner squares, all your little squares around the stars and also your border fabric. So, and you can’t even really tell there’s a border because it’s the same color but that was the look we were going for. So 5 ¼ yards of that.

So let me show you how to do this. This is just so much fun. So first you’re going to take some background fabric and you’re going to cut them into 6 ½ inch squares. And I have a bunch of those here. And you are going to need 60 of those for this quilt right here. And this quilt actually is a 69 by 81 so it’s a pretty decent sized quilt. And then you’re also going to need some 2 ½ inch squares. And when you cut 2 ½ inch squares, I’ll show you how I, how I cut them up but you know, you can cut them easily by cutting them in strips first. Laying out a bunch of the strips and cutting out a bunch of them at a time. And you’re actually going to need 480. Now don’t stop just because of that number because, you know, it comes together so much faster than you think. And this is one of those where you just want to get the cutting out of the way. And then you want to sit down and create. So we also need to cut 2 ½ inch squares out of our strips. And you’re going to use this same method that I’m going to show you here. You’re going to use with your, your whites as well.

And I’m just going to use some of these strips. I’m going to pull them out here. Get some different colors. And so let’s go for a yellow. And I’m going to stack them like this. And let’s go for a green. And what you can do is honestly, you can lay them, lay them like this. I like to put my selvedges where I’m going to make my first cut. Now I’m left handed so that’s going to happen over here for me. But it doesn’t have to happen there for you. And you’re going to take more strips again. And you’re going to lay them, just keep laying them out in sets of two or three. Stack them up like this. Going the same directions. And I’m just going to set these up here. And I go ahead and stack them. And sometimes I’ll do three or four in a row here. Let me move these out of the way to make sure you can see. Sometimes I’ll do three or four. And then I’m just going to take my ruler and I’m going to start making cuts all at once. So I’m going to get a whole bunch of these at one time. So here’s what we do. We are cutting 2 ½ inch squares. And I’m just going to slide my ruler over here 2 ½ and keep cutting them. So this way I cut through a whole bunch of layers at one time. And I get myself a whole bunch of squares. And we’re going to cut up the whole pack like that. And just keep cutting and cutting, going along. When you get all your strips all cut up you’re going to have this pile of squares. And you just want to leave those in a pile. Alright so, and of course you’re going to go ahead and cut all of yours. So I just cut a few to show you what I’m doing and an easy way to do that. But you’re going to go ahead and cut them all. So you’re going to have a pile of squares and a pile of, of white squares as well. And then you need assemble your stars.

So to make the stars, what we’re going to do is we’re going to pull out 60 of these squares for the centers. See the centers how they’re whole, those are whole 2 ½ inch squares. And we’re going to pull out 60 of those. And we’re going to make the rest of our stars with it. So the main sewing on this is making star legs. And the star legs, you know when I started making these it was so fun because every star seemed to have its own personality. So what I do is I take my square like this. And the wonky means there’s no pattern. There’s no right, there’s no wrong. We’re just going to put them together. What I do is I take the edge of my square like this. And I like to line it up so I know that this side of the square comes over, this is a 2 ½ inch square so we want it to come over that half mark right there. So this one is coming over and I’m going to go over and sew my little quarter inch seam on there. When I get ready to sew my squares, I’m going to sew a whole bunch of them. I’m just going to chain piece them. But for right now I’m just going to show you this one.

We’re going to make one set of star legs. So we’re going to come over here to the sewing machine. And I’m going to lay my presser foot on the edge of my colored square. I’m just going to sew down this side. And we’re going to trim that back. Then we’re going to come to the ironing board right here. And we are going to just press this back. When you press them back what you want to make sure of is that it covers your corner. And of course it will. And then you want to square up your block again. So what we’re going to do is we’re going to take our little ruler. Trim off these edges right here. And your block stays 2 ½ And you hang onto these pieces because these can be another corner. And then we’re going to take another piece and we’re going to cross it over this way. You want to make sure that this crosses over right here, this center piece right here, you want to make sure this crosses over. So again you can angle your leg long. You can make a long leg, you can make a short leg. You can do all kinds of things with it. And you just sew it down a quarter of an inch . Now I’m, I’m over here. My presser foot again is right along the edge of the color. We’re going to sew down. We’re going to press it back. And we’re going to trim it up. So for each block you make, you’re going to need four sets of legs. And that’s why I want to show you the chain piecing. So this is your block that you’re looking for right there. You’re going to need four of these to make a star.

So when you chain piece, you’re just going to take a stack of these over to your sewing machine. And you’re going to just put legs only on one side. And you’re just going to go one side, one side, one side, one side. Then you’re going to iron, iron, iron, trim, trim, trim. Then do the other side. That will help speed up the process for you. And I hope that makes sense because once you get enough legs which I have a little stack of legs over here. Then you can put your stars together. So again you need a whole one for your middle. So let’s come over here, pick this, I like to pick something that isn’t in the star. So here’s a whole one. And we’re going to put our star legs around it so you can see all the different legs. Let’s see here. Here’s one and here’s a green. And some of these, some of these are short little legs and some are long legs. But you can see how that’s going to look. Let me make sure it’s right there where the camera can see it. And then we’ve got our corner blocks. So now this becomes a nine patch. We’re going to put it together in three rows of three. And so what I like to do is again I will chain piece all of these pieces. These two rows right here are the same. And so we’re just going to sew them together. And then you’re one square in the center has the two legs that face it. So let’s sew these rows together. And make us a little star here.

So again, I sit here with my stack of legs and I sew the sides on all of them. And I just sew one side like this. And slide another one in there and put another one on the side. Because you’re going to need two sides for every star. Or two of these top and bottom rows. And then when I’m done with this I just bring them around and I kind of finger press that row back like this. And then I add my other side piece on there. And then I add my side piece on here. I need to grab one, here’s one right here. And again you just chain piece them through. So I do, I like do all my legs at one time and then I do all my center blocks. Just like that. And we’ll press these open. Let me go ahead and clip these apart. And we’re going to press these open. And I really, I just like to roll them back. So I always press from the top to make sure that my, I have no little creases or pleats. And then you can turn them over and your seams should go the right way. So now we have our legs that go top and bottom like this. And we sew our center square together which is going to be one 2 ½ inch whole square with a leg on either side. And we’re just going to do that right now. And again, when I do my centers I do a whole bunch at one time. Alright now when I press this one, I’m going to press it so that my seams go in because on these ones they go out. And I’m going to press this one so the seams go in. And my seams are in on that side and in on this side. And then when we go to put these together with the legs, they’ll nest very nicely. So this nesting right here, you want these seams right here to line right up, match right up. And we are going to sew these sides together onto our top and bottom of our star. So now we’re just going to sew the side of this. We’re going to come along here. I make sure that first seam is nested. I’m going to stop. Make sure my second seam is nested. And I can feel that there’s not space between that with my fingers. And I love that kind of piecing because it just, you know it’s going to turn out good. Alright now we get to add our other legs on our other side right here. And I have a block over here that didn’t quite match up perfectly. I mean a piece of my star leg that sticks out a little bit. But on anything like that if it still fits in that quarter inch seam you’re good to go because, you know, you’re going to, you’re going to cover it. It’s not going to show. So don’t die over that. Alright. So now let’s press this one back. Oh I love these. I love when you open them up and you get to see. Every one is so different. Look how cute this is. Isn’t that the cutest thing ever? Now if you feel the need, you can square this up a little bit. This one is a little wonky. And I would actually, honestly I’d make my first star before I cut my background squares because you want to make sure that your background squares are the same size as your star is. Mine came out 6 ½ . Mathematically I think that’s what it’s supposed to be. But, but you’re going to want to cut your background fabric to whatever size your star ends up. That’s going to be determined by your perfect seam allowance. So I’m just straightening this up. Alright so then you have these nice star blocks.

And how we put these together, really we’re just going to put five stars and five white blocks like this. So where’s my pile of stars here? Here’s my stars. Alright so now we’re going to put this and we’re going to put this. We’re going to put another star just like this. Now let’s see, we’ve got, we’ve got five across. So I’m going to do all my, my star rows the same way. I’m going to lay them out star, square, star, square, star, square. So we go to the quilt and we see these, but we see that they’re staggered. So the next row you’re just going to flip over. So that it’s starts with the solid square and then a star and then a solid square and a star. So it just makes it really easy to lay out. So we went ahead and put a four inch border all the way around it. And it just made it work so cute.
Now here’s the cool thing about this quilt. I wanted to make a quilt for a certain size. This was the quilt I wanted to make for my granddaughter Annie when she went off to college. And so I was making a quilt a certain size and so I made my quilt until it was big enough–this size. But let me just show you. So after I got done with the quilt I decided to take the rest of my blocks I had and see how many more stars I could make. And so let me just show you. So I have all these more stars. I have all these more stars over here. I mean I just have loads of these stars. I could actually, I could actually make two quilts this size out of this one roll. So that was really fun to find out because there are, I have 60 stars in this quilt and I made a total of 120. So if you need a really big wonky star quilt, this is a great way for you to do it. It’s really, really fun. And it’s, I mean it’s just, Oh I just love these because every little one is, is special and different. Just like my little grandchildren. So we hope you enjoyed this tutorial on the Mini Wonky Star from the MSQC.

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  • Susan Davis

    I have started three baby whonky star quilts and love them . Iam going to quilt them
    with “I have told every little star just how wonderful you are” and other baby sayings
    I need fabric with music notes . Do you have any ???????????

  • Martina

    I started sewing wonky stars out of all sorts of scrap pieces, building them together with a dark blue shady background fabric. It looks FANTASTIC! Those little stars sparkle on the dark ground like crazy!
    I hope to finish it soon to send to you for machine quilting. I am sure it will look stunning!