With a free pattern and a giveaway, Alive and Piecing is back on WordPress…

My major goals for 2023 are to focus on growing my blog and getting LOTS of quilting done, using my overgrown stash of fabrics!

So, I have decided that I am going to provide a free quilt pattern, here on my blog, every month this year.  It will be a pattern designed to use my stash, help teach beginners how to quilt, and offer ideas and projects that all quilters can use to make their quilting life easier.  

I will also TRY to offer a modest giveaway with each pattern.  

Look for patterns to be posted by the first Friday of each month.  

The January Giveaway:

For some reason, I have ended up with 3 of these lovely polar bear panels.  I know that one of them came from my sister when she went to Alaska.  She chose just the right one because it was one I had already selected for myself and had in my stash.   I think the third one arrived because I found the kit on sale and wanted more of the coordinating fabrics.  

I will be giving one of these panels away to go along with this quilt pattern.  

How to enter the drawing:  You will get one entry for each of the following:

  • Become a follower of this blog
  • Share a link to this post on your own blog
  • Show me a picture of a block you make from this pattern

That is up to 3 chances per quilter to win this lovely panel.  I will be adding entries to a numbered list in the order they are received and then will use a random number generator to find our one winner.  I will draw for the winner on Tuesday, January 31, 2023.  

All entries need to be received by Monday, February 6, 2023.   

The January Pattern: Polar Ice

60 X 68 Inches

This quilt was designed to use stash fabrics and a panel you have been holding onto.  So, be creative, go with what you have! I can’t wait to see… 

Yardage required:

1 panel of your choice- see trimming instructions below. 

2.5 yards of blue- a variety of scraps is fine as long as you can get two 5 inch squares from each scrap.

1.5 yards of white– again scraps are fine as long as you can get at least two 5 inch squares from each piece. 

Binding will require approximately 20 inches by WOF.

Backing will require approximately 3 yards of fabric.

A Cutting Chart is provided at the end of the pattern.    

Note: The panel I used had to be trimmed down.  I wanted multiples of 8 (8 inch blocks) so I decided I would trim it down to fit an area measuring 24 inches by 32 inches finished.  I also wanted a border on my panel so I had to subtract that from my panel size. 

Trim panel to 20.5 inches by 28.5 inches. (You can do it.  Think about how long you have had that panel…)

Border strips to trim the panel:

     Cut into four strips at 2.5 inches wide by width of fabric.

          Cut two of these at 28.5 inches for the long sides

          Cut two at 24.5 inches long for the top and bottom. 

 Here is a picture of the trimmed and bordered panel.    And, due to my rusty math skills, I had to remove the top border, trim some more off the panel and then reattach the border.  But all is well that ends well…    

The ice blocks are 8.5 inches unfinished.  They are made from half square triangles that measure 4.5 inches unfinished.

Note: any time you want to use this method for half square triangles, you take the measurement that your blocks need to be (in this case, 4.5 inches) and add 3/8ths of an inch. That means your squares will be cut at 4 7/8ths inches.  

One Ice Block, made up of four half square triangle blocks, each of them need to measure 4.5 inches square before you sew them together.  

For Each block:

Cut two white squares and two blue squares that each measure 4 & 7/8ths inches square. 

Note: You need 44 blocks for the Polar Ice Quilt.  That means you need to cut 88 blue squares and 88 white squares in pairs of 2 of each color.  It takes 2 blue and 2 white squares to make one block.  I used 4 different white fabrics and 7 different blue fabrics. 

On the wrong side of each white square, draw a diagonal line down the middle as pictured below.

Match a white square with a blue square, right sides together, and sew, using the diagonal line as the edge of your ¼ inch seam.

Sew on each side of the line.  Then cut the triangles apart on the line.  Press open towards the blue fabric. 

Lay out a block before you sew it together so that you can make sure you have it oriented correctly.  At this point, I start pressing my seams open so there will be less bulk at the points. 

At this step I also start pinning my blocks.  Because the seams are pressed open, they are harder to match.  They do not nest against each other. 

Match these center seams and pin. 

The end diagonal seams still nest so they are a little easier to match but I still pin them. 

I did not trim my squares at any point after the initial cutting and, as you can see, it measures a perfect 8.5 inches. Just check to make sure the blocks turned out decently uniform and correct.  

Lay your blocks out and arrange how you like.  I chose to arrange mine from light in the upper left hand corner to dark in the lower right hand corner. 

In the diagram below, the blocks are randomly placed. 

* To finish the quilt top, I added 2 inch borders.  They are cut at 2.5 inches wide.  Two strips joined together and trimmed to 64.5 inch lengths for each side.  I joined a light strip and a dark strip for the left side, joining them on a 90 degree angel, as you would for binding strips. The right side got a solid dark strip. 

* For the top and bottom, cut your borders 60.5 inches long, joining strips to achieve this length.  The top strip was again a combination of a light and dark strip joined on a 90 degree angle.  The bottom received a dark strip. 

Cutting Chart

PieceSizeNumber to cut
Ice blocks- blue squares4 7/8ths inch squares88
Ice blocks- white squares4 7/8ths inch squares88
Panel20.5 inches wide by 28.5 inches long1
Panel border sides2.5 inches wide by 28.5 inches2
Panel Border top/Bottom2.5 inches by 24.5 inches2
*Outer Border sides2.5 by 64.5 inches2
*Outer Border Top/Bottom2.5 by 60.5 inches2

*- please see border notes above

If you prefer to have a printable PDF of this pattern, you can find it at my Etsy shop for $2.00  https://www.etsy.com/shop/AndraAndIvy

Thanks so much for following!  Happy Quilting to all!


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