Author Archives: Chris

New Pattern

A new pattern has been added to the Meadowside Designs Payhip shop. This quilt grew out of one of the Chris & Barbara ‘Grow Your Own’ workshops where we made quilts by starting with a centre and just adding borders until we were seriously bored or felt our quilt was big enough.

Great scrap-busters these quilts proved very popular with different workshops using different designs and units to make a quilt. Now its your turn to have a go starting with this quilt in blues and edging into purples.  You can start with an orphan block or make the one from the pattern and then keep going . . . Buy the pattern here.

blue medallion


April EQ Doodles

Despite best intentions to have another post up between Doodle posts I seem to have failed. Sometimes life just gets in the way  . . . !

So, over on the chrisandbarbaraquilts blog you can find our April doodle which this month features Boxed Star – actually a very similar block to last month, Barbara is having an Eight-Pointed Star moment!

Boxed Star

If you would like to make this block you can download the templates for a 12 inch square here.

If you prefer to rotary cut then you will need to cut two 3 and 3/8 inch squares, cut in half diagonally, for the four corner burgundy squares and the same for the purple triangles around the star; two 4 and 3/4 inch squares, cut in four diagonally, for the eight burgundy outer triangles; four 3inch squares in purple (or your colour choice – this one is a bit garish!) and from the white four 3 x 4 and 1/8 inches. The yellow star diamonds are cut from 2 and 1/4 inch wide strips – cut them as you did for last month’s star and the instructions are here. This block is not easy to rotary cut – the measurements are rounded up to the nearest 1/8 inch but a bit of fudging may be required to get everything to fit.

To piece the block the instructions are again similar to last month’s. Piece the centre star first. (oops – a triangle seems to have wandered off in the penultimate picture – I’ll probably find it on the virtual floor later!)

Boxed Star centre construction

Piece the block corners and then add them to the centre star – opposite corners first is easier.

Boxed Star corner construction

Boxed Star centre plus corner

Boxed Star

You can download the colouring sheet on the chrisandbarbara blog post here.


EQ Doodles

Over on our sister site – chrisandbarbara – we try to publish a series of EQ doodles each month together with a brief blogpost and a colouring sheet to download. We had the sudden bright idea that you might actually want to know how to make some of these blocks – what sizes to cut, or templates provided. So . . . we’re going to try to do it each month here on the Meadowside blog.

The March doodles are based on a block called Birds and Star – essentially an 8-pointed star on point with half-square triangles (HSTs) around it (like Birds in the Air – hence its name, probably).

March block c

We’ve done instructions for a 12 inch block and if you would like templates then you can download them here.

For rotary cutting you need:-

2 and 7/8 inch squares for the corner HSTs – cut each in half to give two triangles, or quick-piece using your preferred method (see the Tutorials page for guidance).

2 and 1/4 inch strips for the diamonds – cut light ones from left to right; dark ones from right to left (or place the fabrics right sides together and cut both at once) using the 45 degree line on your ruler. Cut at 2 and 1/4 inch intervals.


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The corner squares for the 8-pointed star are cut at 3 inches.

The set-in triangles are cut from 3 and 3/8 inch squares – cut each square in half diagonally to give two triangles.

Make the 8-pointed star block first, taking care with those Y seams when setting in the corner squares and setting triangles.

star astar bstar cstar d

Stitch the corner HST units according to your colourings (which will probably be very different from ours). Stitch these smaller units into the larger triangles.

corner units

Stitch these larger triangles to the sides of the 8-pointed star. Stitch opposite sides first, press and then stitch the other two sides.

star corners

star corners b

Chain Quilts

We’ve been browsing some of our photos and patterns and thought we might remind you about these two red and white chain quilts, the pattern for which can be found here. These two late 19th century quilts belong to Ann and Barbara. Ann’s is a coverlet (no wadding) and is simply quilted with a crosshatch design. Barbara’s has been well worn – the Turkey red squares have all but disappeared except at the edges which were presumably out of the sun. Hers is quilted with a simple curves and cross-hatch pattern.

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These chain quilts are really quick and easy to make if you want a graphic quilt for a bed or a wall-hanging and are ideal for the men in your life who don’t want anything fussy or floral. Make them in plains or tone-on-tone prints for the graphic effect. Try different colours too rather than sticking with red and white.

For the younger ones perhaps a print instead of the white – dinosaurs, tractors, trains, spaceships . . .

Or for girly girls try prettier prints with fairies, unicorns, flowers . . .

Fussy-cut big prints can look effective as well and the colour you choose for the smaller squares can make quite a difference to the look of the quilt.

If you want to have a play with this design you can download a colouring sheet here or, of course, you could buy the pattern and make one for real!

Hannah Hauxwell’s quilts

Hannah Hauxwell was an amazing woman who lived on a remote farm in Yorkshire almost entirely cut off from the outside world until a TV documentary was made about her in 1972. She died in February last year and next month Tennants will be auctioning the quilts from her house. You can find out a little more about them (and Hannah) in this blogpost from UK Quilters United.

I was really taken with the six-pointed star quilt in one of the photos I found on the auctioneers website and wondered about making something similar. At first I thought the blocks were the standard square, but when I tried to draw the star I realised that the blocks had to be rectangles – the star is based on a hexagon and won’t fit into a square. Back to the drawing board (or EQ anyway!).

hannah hauxwell's six-pointed star

The original quilt has a lot of blocks and a bright pink binding. I have just drawn a quilt with a few blocks, but have tried to keep those blocks fairly small – 4.5 x 5.25 inches as I think they would need to be (whisper it quietly!) hand-pieced. At which point I decided that no way was I going to be making this quilt except in the virtual world. So I thought I would give you the chance to do a bit of hand-piecing and you can download the templates and a quilt to colour here. Have fun!

hh batik2



We’ve been having a bit of a tidy up of our pattern store on Payhip as they now offer to sort everything into categories – much easier than scrolling through pages of random stuff looking for just what you want.

Heritage Quilts patterns are still available here, the other patterns have been sorted into categories such as bags, Christmas quilts, table runners, bed quilts and wall-hangings. You can either go direct to the category you want or go to the main pattern store page and click on categories to help navigate your way. Some quilts may be in more than one category.

Quilts Beneath Your Feet also have a separate category – and the Black and White Tiles quilt has been added. More are on the way – Chris just needs to get her act together! (could this be a New Year Resolution?)

Black and White Tiles