Category Archives: patchwork patterns

Free Pattern Friday 9

Welcome to another Friday and another free pattern while we are isolating / locked-down / socially-distanced or otherwise unable to meet up and go to classes.

This week’s is a simple to make design but at first glance looks quite complicated. It is one of a number that you can currently download for free from the Meadowside Designs Payhip shop. Called Which Way is Up? it seemed rather appropriate for things as they are at the moment. This is the link to go straight to the pattern in the shop to download it.

which way

Have a play with the colouring – download a colouring sheet here – to design your own. I had a quick play with Electric Quilt’s magic wand to change the colours randomly starting with my original black and white with red.

which way a

I saved a few to show you – notice that a very pale pastel colour for the arrows and one other colour doesn’t really show up the arrows likewise the purple and green one I felt I could see lots green arrows instead of the few greyish ones.

which way 5which way 1

A strong contrast colour for the few arrows makes them stand out more – like the original red – even though the other two colours are quite contrasting as well. But if you use similar tones for the many arrows and a strong contrast in tone and/or colour then those few arrows really pop out.

which way 4which way 3which way 2

What effect are you after? How many contrast arrows do you want to add in? Your quilt – your choices!

As for the border – feel free to change it, use a single fabric rather than the half-square triangles I used (they were left-over from something else and just happened to fit) or design your own border to suit. Flying Geese might be an idea?

which way a border

Although maybe not as many? Separate them out a bit with some random plain squares or rectangles?

which way b border

I quite like this version – I might just have to make it. Sometime.

Free Pattern Friday 8

Another ‘locked-down’ Friday and another free pattern for you, thanks to the magic that is EQ. Today’s block is called Flying Clouds and comes from one my favourite (and earliest) quilt book purchases – The Perfect Patchwork Primer by Beth Gutcheon. The illustration in the book is just greyscale so I have added a little colour and you can see I haven’t put my fabrics as suggested – what would happen if I had?

Because the block is not symmetrical you can turn them around to get different patterns when you put them together in a quilt.

You can also get different effects depending on where you put your lights and darks too.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

You can download a quilt to colour, the rotary cutting instructions for an 8 inch block and the instructions to make a quilt here.

As for what would happen if I moved my fabrics around to match the ones in the original diagram – here’s the block

Flying Clouds block a

and here’s the quilt (with alternate blocks turned once)

Flying Clouds quilt e

I’m beginning to think I prefer this version now  . . . !

Free Pattern Friday 4

Another scrappy project for you today – Tessellating leaves. The blocks are only 3 inches square so an ideal opportunity to find and use those smaller bits.

This piece was made sometime in the ’90s and is the front of a jacket/waistcoat made when Jazzy Jackets were all the rage.

2020-04-05 09.56.07

I misread the measurements for the jacket and then managed to add another seam allowance as well so it ended up far too big for me. But it did fit my dad and he very nobly wore it (indoors) for some time before the weather became ‘too warm for an extra layer’. I found it in the back of his wardrobe when I was helping mum after he died so I have kept it.

For the pattern I have done for you this week I have simplified the one I used so the piecing is much easier for machine stitching – no Y seams!


Barbara (Chainey) and I taught a variation of this at one of our Chris & Barbara workshops back in 2007 as well and I have used a couple of the pieces that were made then as illustrations too. This first one is Val’s –

leaves Val

and then to show you don’t have to use leafy colours, here’s Maureen’s

Maureen's leaves2

You can download your free pattern here and we leave you with a few of the alternative colourings that Electric Quilt’s magic wand came up with


Free Pattern Friday

A 9-patch quilt today – make it as simple or complicated as you wish. I made this one a very long time ago with a limited colour palette and your pattern download is the class worksheet I drew up after I made it.

Amish 9-patch

However, you can put your own stamp on it – change the colours, change the layout, use scraps, make more blocks (or fewer blocks). Here’s a few limited palette ideas that Electic Quilt came up with.


Recently I have been mindlessly sewing scrap squares into 9-patches and as you can see you could make this quilt with those.

2020-03-31 09.27.55

Or you can just set them in a straight grid with sashing between.

2020-03-31 09.25.20

Or you could offset alternate rows.


Or you could . . . ? Download a colouring/design sheet here to play with instead!

And as an added bonus – from today all the patterns in the Meadowside Shop have been reduced – most are £1, some are 50p and some are free!

Free Pattern Friday

Given what’s going on these days we decided to keep us all busy during our enforced isolation with yet more ideas and things to make by offering a free pattern on Fridays for as long as it takes.

So – if you fancy ‘doing a runner’ we have a pattern today. You can make this by hand (EPP or otherwise) or by machine.


What you will get in your download is a worksheet from a Chris & Barbara workshop back in 2013 but we think that you have all the information (and templates) in there that you need.

For those doing it by machine here’s a quick slideshow of step by step photos –

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

And here’s a couple of blocks others have made – one from Barbara and one from Karen.

And then there are other ways to put these blocks together –

Have fun with this. Keep sewing . . .keep safe . . .

Sawtooth Star variations

Having looked at Sawtooth Star last time I thought we could have a look at a few variations of this block over the next couple of weeks. Some of them are well-known and have recognised names and some of them I’ve drawn – but this doesn’t mean that no one else has before me.

The Variable Star is a Sawtooth Star with a Square-in-a-Square in the centre.

Variable Star

And when put into a quilt could look like this

Variable Star quilt


but it might look more interesting if we alternated the colours

Variable Star quilt a


Mosaic no.19 is a variation on the Variable Star with Half-Square triangles in the corners which you could colour in different ways – here’s two and the quilts you get using just these on their own


Mosaic 19 quilt

Mosaic 19 quilt a


Similar to this is the Variable Star Variation (which to my mind is more a Sawtooth Star Variation)

Variable Star variation

and the quilt it makes

Variable Star variation quilt


There’ll be more variations next week. In the meantime you could download the Sawtooth Star colouring page from last week and use it to design your own variations and quilts.

Star blocks

It seems to be halfway through January already, so – Happy New Year! We hope you have enjoyed collecting the Dresden Plate patterns over the last few months and even making one or two of them.

In search of a new ‘theme’ for blog posts we’ve come up with ‘Stars’, and searching for blocks containing that word in EQ and in Blockbase came up with nearly 200 blocks. Of course many of them are the same block with multiple names and many are variations of each other, but there are still a lot of star blocks to keep us going for a few months.

Long ago Chris did a book for David & Charles – the Little Book of Stars – which may still be available second-hand through various websites for a few pennies. The idea was to make a star block the same size as the book for each illustration. As the book was only 6 inches square this proved a little challenging for some blocks and Chris’s piecing skills. Also included were examples of the blocks used in quilts and different colourings of the blocks all done with the aid of EQ and (fortunately) not having to be made from fabric. One quilt was required though – a small sampler quilt made with 6inch blocks –


It was designed to feature the various different types of star and construction methods although no actual pattern was ever given. You can now buy this pattern through our Payhip shop if you wish.

However we will start (soon) with regular posts featuring a variety of stars and ideas plus instructions for making them – though probably at a larger size than 6inches. Watch this space!