25 Ways to Sew Jelly Rolls: Layer Cakes and Charm Squares: Modern quilts from contemporary pre-cuts By Brioni Greenberg

Book review by Beryl Snell


Although there seems to be a lot of quilting books around for jelly rolls, layer cakes and charm squares, the quilting ideas in this book are varied, fresh and interesting. As in the book subtitle, they have a more modern look. Projects range from small and straight forward like a notebook cover, bags and cushions to some larger quilt projects, some of which are a little more difficult. The Shuriken quilt on page 58 is simple but striking. Criss-cross patches on page 30 offers a good way to use up scraps from your stash, if you do not have charm square packs.

I really like the way there are lots of pictures to demonstrate the “how to” for each project. In the back of the book there are also good instructions for some basic techniques such as foundation paper piecing and appliqué. I recommend this book if you are looking for some new ideas.

My favourite project was the Starburst Bag on page 8, made with bright jelly roll fabrics. When I saw it I just had to have a go. I made my starburst bag using fabrics from my stash of gorgeous bright batiks I bought in Bali last year. It is a nifty idea – you fold then iron heaps of 2.5 inch squares into triangles and then place and sew them in rounds. This gives a 3D effect.


Placement of triangles

Completed Bag











After cutting and ironing enough 2.5 inch squares for the first round, I soon realised it was much easier to iron the 2.5 inch strips in half before you cross cut them. Another tip is to draw diagonal lines on your background square with a Frixion or water soluble pen. This will, help you keep the points of the triangles in straight lines. I did not do this and some of my placements are a little bit wonky. You also need to make sure you securely sew down the edges of every triangle in each round. I used a glue pen to hold down the triangles before I sewed them. It took quite a long time to place and sew each round, but it was worth it, as I love my bag.

I am also going to make the big and bold circles cushion on page 84, so watch this space! This project is made using purchased layer cake squares, or you could just choose your fabrics and cut ten inch squares.

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