Vintage Modern Bow Tie Quilt

 Hi! it is Ann from A Girl in Paradise, and I am so happy to be sharing my first project here at Moda Bake Shop.  This tutorial is for a traditional bow tie quilt that I have re-designed to use layer cake pre-cuts with set in seams. I have come up with an easy way to cut the blocks without using templates, generating very little waste by using the pre-cut layer cakes.

Quilt Top
1 Moda Vintage Modern layer cake
2.5 yards of off-white fabric for the background and borders

3.5 yards of your choice of a coordinating printed fabric

0.5 yard of another coordinating fabric

Cut each layer cake (or 10″ square) into three 3.25″ strips.  Then with each strip, cut two 3.25″ squares and one 2.5″ square.

Cut one corner off of all the 3.25″ squares but not the 2.5″ square as instructed below.  This will allow you to easily set in your seams for each block. 

Place your 3.25″ square, point to point, or on the 45 degree line on your cutting mat.  Line up your ruler and make a cut 1.25″ in from the edge of the corner point as shown in the picture above.

Once you have your layer cake cut you will need to cut the off-white background fabric.  Cut twenty 3.25″ strips from your background fabric.  Then, cut all of those strips into 3.25″ squares.  In total, you will need to cut two-hundred forty [240] 3.25″ squares.  Finally, cut the 1.25″ point off each square as you did before.

For each bow tie block you will need:

  • Two 3.25″ squares of the off-white background fabric
  • Two 3.25″ squares of the printed layer cake fabric
  • One 2.5″ square of the printed layer cake fabric

Note: Each 10″ square of the layer cake will make three 5.75″ unfinished blocks once you add the off-white background fabric.  One layer cake plus the background fabric will give you 126 total blocks.  You will need 120 blocks for this quilt.

Now, let’s put our block together as pictured in the steps above.
Steps 1 & 2 – sew your two printed 3.25″ squares to your printed 2.5″ square along the edge where you previously cut off your point.  Make sure you start and end your stitches 0.25″ on each side, as pictured.  Do not sew edge to edge.
Step 3 – now add your off-white background fabric to the printed bow tie with the right sides together.  Place a pin where one of the two existing seams meet, roughly 0.25″ in from the edge.
Step 4 – start your first stitch just beyond that pin to the outer edge.
Step 5 – in order to sew the inside seam, you will again need to place your pin where the second seam meets, roughly 0.25″ in from the edge.
Step 6 – start your first stitch just beyond that pin, sewing until you reach the first set of stitches.
Step 7 – line up your printed and off-white background fabric corner to corner, and sew from the outer edge until you reach the inside seam.
Step 8 – repeat by adding the second off-white background fabric piece to the other side of the bow tie.
Step 9 – then press the block.
Now that we have our blocks done, let’s start laying out our quilt.  As I am sure you already know, there are countless layout options when working with bow tie blocks.  For this quilt, I decided to go with a bow tie circle block.  
First, I took four random bow tie blocks and laid them out to create a bow tie circle.  I sewed the top two blocks together, and then the bottom two blocks together as pictured above.  I pressed the seams open, then sewed the top blocks to the bottom blocks creating the bow tie circle block.  Finally, I pressed each bow tie circle block and trimmed them square.  I find that trimming makes all of the blocks consistent and easy for you to line up when putting your quilt top together.
In a random order lay out and sew together five bow tie circle blocks across and six bow tie circle blocks down.  You will need a total of 30 bow tie circle blocks for this quilt. 
After I finished putting the all of the bow tie circle blocks together, then I pressed them.  Next, I added my borders by cutting six 3.25″ strips from the remaining off-white fabric.  Finally, I pressed my completed quilt top. 
Now that your quilt top is ready, sandwich it with your batting and backing fabric.  Machine or hand quilt as desired.  Add your binding to finish your bow tie quilt.

One throw quilt measuring approximately 68″ by 58″.  

Don’t forget to stop by and say Hi!  You can visit me at A Girl in Paradise for some more quilt inspiration and tutorials.

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Ann McKinney