I made two versions of Surplus Strips to showcase the warm and cool colorways of Fandangle, but this pattern would look great in any fabrics! The name of the pattern is a play on words. I’ve been enjoying seeing lots of plus quilts with a modern vibe and I wanted to design a pattern that could be easily made with 2 1/2″ precut strips.
You could use all new fabric like I did, or you could use your leftovers or the “surplus” from your scrap bin. The easiest way to pull fabrics is to select a couple of colors you like and pair them with a high-contrast background fabric.
The inspiration for Surplus Strips came from some really cool looking hotel carpet I saw during one of my many travels last year. Whenever I see a great textural image or architectural design, I always snap a pic because you never know when inspiration is going to strike!
I love the asymmetrical plus shapes shown below. When I saw that, I immediately knew I wanted to make a quilt based on this design. Of course it took awhile to figure out the math and get the proportions and colors right, but it was a fun challenge to figure out!
Some worn hotel carpet was the inspiration behind the design of my Surplus Strips quilts.
I quilted both versions of Surplus Strips with a different allover free-motion design similar to designs in the fabric line. On the warm colorway, I quilted “jagged stipple” which inspired the “Paper Cuts” design in the collection.
My jagged stipple quilting motif inspired the “Paper Cuts” print, above, in orange and yellow.
Because I had a limited amount of fabric while making these quilts, I didn’t have enough of any one fabric for the backing of the warm version, so I created an interesting secondary composition, or “back art” instead!
I sewed a few extra plus blocks and used nice big leftover chunks of coordinating prints. I love making pieced backings when I have enough time, and it’s a great way to add interest to the quilt.
When quilting the cool colorway, I used another favorite free-motion motif which inspired another one of the prints in the collection:
My arrowheads quilting design is a really dense echo triangle shape which is fun to quilt and adds tons of texture. It inspired the “Triangle Trinkets” print which you can see peeking out on the back and in the blue/green print above and below.
Don’t you love the refreshing ocean colors of blue and green??
I had so much fun making these quilts and now I want to make them in a rainbow of colors!! The quilt pattern makes it super easy to do and is written for both yardage or precut strips.
Surplus Strips Finished Stats
- Designed and made by Christa Watson
- Completed May, 2018
- Finished sizes 67″ x 82″
- Pieced and quilted on my BERNINA 770 QE
- Quilt design: free motion jagged stipple (warm) and arrowheads (cool)
- Fabric is Fandangle by Christa Watson for Benartex Contempo Studio
- Quilting thread: Aurifil 50 wt #3660 Bubble Gum (warm) and #4662 Creme De Menthe (cool)
- Batting is Hobbs Tuscany Silk (warm) Tuscany 100% Cotton (cool)