Monday 22 August 2011

A spider's web quilt my way

 (The Pooches and Pickups giveaway is here)

I have had the spider's web quilt on my 'to do' list for a while now, especially having seen this, this and this.

However, I also kept wondering what would happen if you didn't construct it with the regular measurements ie. the exact same inches either side of the triangle.

So I decided to find out.

I used the paper piece method.

Decide on the size of square you are making. This one is 8". Cut it on the diagonal to get your half square triangles.

Fold each triangle in half along the long edge and press hard on the crease on the long edge. You should be able to see it in the above image. This denotes the centre towards which you will draw your two lines from either side of the shorter edges of the triangle.

Then, decide how much spider's web you fancy having and how much negative space you want in between. The larger your measurement out from the tip of the triangle, the bigger your spider's web will be.

On the top triangle I have measured 3" along from the top on the left hand side. If this was going to be a regular spider's web quilt, you'd then measure 3" along from the top on the right hand side.

But it isn't.

So I didn't.

Instead, I then measure 3" in from the BOTTOM right. You then draw these lines to 1/4" above the centre crease, as above.
You also need to do a mirror image of that measure 3" along from the bottom on the left and 3" along from the top at the right.
Each spider's web block consists of eight triangles so you'll need four each of the above two types.

How you then proceed depends on how you want the finished spider's web quilt to look.
  • If you want each band of the web to be the same colour you have to make eight triangles with exactly the same colour order
  • If you want each band to match up, you need to cut the same width (1 1/2" is good)
  • If you don't want them to match up, cut strips anywhere between 1" to 2"
What I did
  • I tried to make the main spider's web all 1 1/2" strips
  • I ONLY matched up the first band of colour and the centre of the main spider's web
  • All the rest were random
  • In the secondary shape that was created from not using equal measurements, I went completely random

There are a ton of spider's web tutorials out there and I'm not going to be re-inventing the wheel by posting one here. So, instead, have a look at this excellent one if you are interested in the block construction.

And what does mine look like so far?

I decided to go for the mad, bonkers look. In the negative space I cut up two big print Kaffe Fassett fabrics. Equally, to calm it down you could just go for a solid. I appreciate my choice of fabric is not for everyone so try and focus more on the new shape that is created rather than my personal interpretation.
Note: if you do go for the mad, bonkers look, to make your shapes stand out you need to be more concerned with VALUE rather than COLOUR. By that I mean you should aim to go for a different value (lighter or darker than your bonkers fabric) so that your shapes stand out. How dark or light you go depends on how much definition you want your shapes to have.

However, what I am more interested in is the secondary shape that appears by altering your measurements.

Here's your regular spider's web shape:

And here is the secondary shape:

For me personally, I liked the unexpected added interest of the secondary shape. The possibilities are limitless. There is no set measurement that you have to go for, so you can make the secondary shape bigger or smaller, just as you can with your main spider's web shape.

I've still a fair way to go with this one but am enjoying how it is shaping up.
If I haven't made this clear, please feel free to ask any questions and I'll reply in the comments section so everyone else can see.


  1. I LOVE the secondary shape. It adds an all new dimension to the quilt. Also liking your mad, bonkers look! :-))

  2. I love love love it. I have been thinking about doing a spider web quilt for a while now with some strips I have had for a long time. I am so glad I waited. This is going to be fun to play with. Thanks for the tute. And you have a great mind!

  3. Mad and bonkers clearly works! Jxo

  4. Wow love this. I really like the way you have put your own twist on it (like your new blog heading photo too)

  5. Such fun, you are going to enjoy sitting under this quilt looking at the mad, bonkers prints for a long time. I love it!

  6. That certainly is colourful and quirky!

  7. i made a spider web quilt that turned out like this,,,i've been wondering how to correct it. now i know, call it "the mad wonkers quilt". problem now solved, thanks!!! :>)

  8. I LOVE your colours and thanks for the tutorial - its inspiring me to give it a go!!

  9. Love this, imo you can't go bonkers too often :-)

  10. wow, that is crazy and great!

  11. I didn't see this first time around! Love bonkers, love this! And the new one!

  12. I've made more than several "normal" spiderweb quilts - but I'm going to try your secondary wonkers - i've got some type print i've been dying to use and the wonkers would be devine for that secondary shape...not as monkery as yours but fun nonetheless!


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