If you haven’t been hiding under a rock or in a cave for the past year, you’ve heard of the Jelly Roll Race quilt pattern. I don’t know who originally came up with it, but it’s flippin’ brilliant, and I sure hope he/she got the credit they deserved. It is made by sewing about 40 (width of fabric) strips together, end to end, mitered or not, and then sewing that insanely long strip together lengthwise several times, until you have a quilt top.. Well, of course, like everyone else out there in quilt blog land, I made one. I didn’t exactly have a real jelly roll, so I gathered some 2.5″ strips from my scrap bin in the desired colours (these happened to coordinate with a Yellow Submarine Beatles poster) and started sewing. I used more than the prescribed 40 strips and my version came out a bit bigger than the pattern says.. all the better..
As you can tell from the picture, I used lots of different lengths in my strips.. I used the scraps I had. If I’m going for scrappy, the different lengths actually helps a lot to break up some of the blocks of colour that can happen with this method,
Here’s what I am wondering… Has anyone come up with a method of controlling where the values go when using WoF strips? (width of fabric) I am no good at math or geometry, or telekenesis.. whatever it would take to figure this out.. But I wonder if there is some formula, like one dark, one light, one dark etc.. To have it turn out a certain way.. With all the lights on the left and all the darks on the right of the quilt top, for instance.. It’s not that I don’t like the random scrappy way these come out, in fact, I do like it very much. But I think I’d like to have more fun with this method. I know that I could simply put my strips on a design wall or floor in the layout I want, and then sew them all together.. but that isn’t as fun as creating that LONG strip and then doubling it up again and again. I’m just curious if anyone has made several of these and noted the way it turns out when they vary the order of their lights and darks.. If you have a clue, drop me a line so that I don’t have to sew twelve of these race quilts, taking notes the entire time