Thursday, 16 March 2017

The Reading Room Quilts....................

Hi all
A couple of weeks ago I told you that we would be doing a couple of special purpose quilts and it has taken me a while to find the time to write them up but thankfully, with Gail's help, I am finally able to do it.

Our deployed troops have started a reading program at in a couple of deployment locations whereby members can Skype home and read a provided book to their children. 

To help get it started they have established areas at both locations with more family oriented decor as the backdrop and we have been asked to make a couple of quilts, one for each location, to hang on the wall behind the lounge as the backdrop for the scene. 

The launch of the initiative has been uploaded to the latest defence video list and can be viewed here

The aim is to eventually develop the capacity for members to record their reading and to send a copy home on DVD.  What a great way to help our deployed families cope with deployment.

So, obviously, yes, we are going to make two quilts.  Each quilt will have three rows of houses with strips in between each row on which we will applique some appropriate words... words that relate to deployment, family and home....

We need volunteers to make 48 blocks following the tutorial below.   Lynn has agreed to wrangle these requests so you will be required to email Lynn on if you are interested in taking part.  You need to register and let Lynn know how many blocks you wish to make. 

Once completed your blocks need to be sent to 

Reading Room Blocks
PO Box 133
Engadine NSW 2233

All blocks need to be in the mail to Lynn no later than 31 March please.

House block tutorial

Please use colours with a medium or medium-light value. 
No brights or very darks  please.
All seams are ¼ inch – you need a quarter inch foot for this.  We will use as many blocks as we can but if your blocks are way too small or way too big they will not fit.

Please DO NOT TRIM off any edges once the block is sewn together.

Roof – 1 rectangle measuring 8 ½ x 4 ½ inches - if you have fabric that looks like roof tiles or thatch etc that would be great but not essential.

Sky – 2 squares measuring 5 inches – please use light blue plain or tone on tone

Door – 1 rectangle measuring 3 x 3 ½ inches – please use a novelty or Australian print
We want to create the illusion there is a character peeking out of the door.

Walls – 2 rectangles measuring 4 ½ x 3 ¼ inches
             1 rectangle measuring  1 ½ x 3 inches
bricks, sticks or suitable fabrics.. please remember we want this to look like houses.

Mark a diagonal line on the back of each 5 inch square.

Pin one 5 inch square onto one end of the roof, as shown. The square will extend beyond the top of the rectangle.

Stitch along the diagonal line. Place a ruler with the ¼ inch line on the stitching line and trim away the corner.

Press the triangle back. Be careful – this is a bias seam and will stretch easily.

Pin the other 5 inch square at the other end of the roof.

Stitch, trim off the corner and press the triangle back carefully. Your roof and sky piece should measure 8 ½ x 5 inches.

Take the door piece and the small wall rectangle. Match the 3 inch sides together at the top of the door piece, then stitch the seam.

Press the seam towards the door.

Take one of the remaining wall rectangles and stitch it onto one side of the door piece.

Press the seam away from the door.

Repeat with the second wall piece. The completed door and wall piece should measure 8 ½ x 4 ½ inches.

Join the roof/sky piece to the door/wall piece, matching the ends carefully. Press the seam to one side.

Your block should measure 8 ½ x 9 inches.

All blocks need to be in the mail to Lynn no later than 31 March please.

I am so looking forward to seeing these quilts come together.

Till next time....keep spreading the word and happy stitching!
Jan-Maree xx


  1. What a wonderful program for the children and their deployed parents. It is great to see so many 'Australian' books. The quilts will certainly add to the atmosphere.