Class of ’42 Reunion

Greetings!  I’m Julie Geiger, owner of Prairie Point Junction Quilt Shop in Cozad, Nebraska.  I love all things Sweetwater so as soon as I saw this line, I knew I had to create something to show it off.

Reunion was such a fun name for this fabric collection.  It got me doing a little reminiscing of my own. 

Instead of family reunions though, the fabric made me think of high-school reunions.  Once I had that on my mind, I had to go dig out my collection of high-school yearbooks and take a little trip down memory lane. 

As I was looking at the rows and rows of class photos, I could see rows and rows of layer cake squares lined up just the same way.  Then the perfect name for my quilt popped in my mind  –  Class Reunion!  I picked the year ’42 since the quilt is made with 42 squares from a layer cake.

A special shout-out goes to Cozad’s Wilson Public Library for allowing me to photograph my quilt on their shelves and borrow some color-coordinated yearbooks for my props. Just one of the many blessings of small-town life.

Glad you could take a minute to humor me and listen to my little quilt-naming tangent.  Now let’s dive in and sew!

1 Reunion Layer Cake (42 squares 10″ x 10″)
1 fat quarter OR 1/3 yard of your favorite print for extra blocks
2 yards American Blue Bella Solid for sashing and binding (9900-174)
5 yards print for backing

Quilt Finished Size: 57 1/2″ x 80″


Begin by cutting two 10″ squares from your favorite fat quarter (or 1/3 yard cut). 
Add these two squares to your layer cake for a total of 44 squares.

Choose 30 of the 10″ layer cake squares to use for the large blocks in your quilt.  Set aside for later.

The remaining 14 layer cake squares will be used for the rectangles in your quilt during the next step.

Take the 14 remaining layer cake squares and cut each square into two 4 1/2″ x 10″ rectangles.  I like to trim the pinked edge from the side of my 10″ square, then cut my two rectangles.  Just a personal preference; you can leave it on if you want. 

Leave the pinked edge on the top and bottom sides of the 10″ square.  If you trim if off, your rectangle will be too short.

You’ll now have a total of 28 rectangles 4 1/2″ x 10″.
Prepare your sashing/binding fabric to cut lengthwise strips.  Leave the fabric folded in half lengthwise, just as it comes off the bolt.  Be sure to keep the selvedge edges carefully lined up.  Your fabric will measure approximately 21″ x 72″ as you lay it on your cutting mat.  Now fold the fabric in half crosswise so that you have a piece approximately 21″ x 36″.  This piece will be a more manageable length to handle. 

You should now have four layers of fabric.  Be sure to keep the edges aligned.  If you don’t keep the edges carefully lined up, you’ll have a bow or dip in your strips. 

Trim off the selvedge edges of the fabric.  I cut part of the way down the fabric and then carefully scoot the fabric down to finish cutting the length of the strip.

Cut six 2 1/2″ wide segments lengthwise.  Due to the way the fabric is folded, this will yield a total of twelve strips 2 1/2″ x the LENGTH of the fabric. The strips will be 2 1/2″ x 72″ long.

Eight of the strips will be used for sashing.  The remaining four strips will be used for binding.
Trim the eight sashing strips to 2 1/2″ x 57 1/2″.
Leave the remaining four strips 2 1/2″ x 72″.

I like to arrange all the blocks for my quilt on my floor (or if you are lucky, a design wall) before I begin to sew.  This lets me play around with the fabric placement before I commit to sewing.  Below is a drawing of the completed quilt to help you better visualize my fabric placement before you get started.
Arrange (30) of the 10” squares in 5 rows of 6 blocks each.  Position the 2 1/2″ x 57 1/2″ blue sashing strips in between the rows of blocks.  Leave room in between each row to come back and arrange the 4 1/2” x 10” rectangles.  I like to start with the big blocks first to get a feel for how my quilt will look.
Now arrange the (28) 4 1/2” x 10” rectangles into four rows of 7 blocks each.  Stagger the placement of the rectangular blocks so that the seam between those blocks will line up with the center point of the square blocks.  Don’t worry yet that the rectangle rows are longer than the square rows.  We’ll trim up those blocks as soon as we have all the blocks placed where we want them.

Are all the fabrics where you want them now?  Move any around that you want. 
NOW we can trim up the end blocks on the rectangle rows so that everything will all line up.  Take the END block from each of the rectangle rows and trim it to 4 1/2” x 5 1/4”.  
Each rectangle row will now have (5) 4 1/2” x 10” blocks in the center of the row and (1) 4 1/2” x 5 1/4” block on each end. 
Sew the blocks into rows.  Each row should measure 57 1/2”.
Join the rows of blocks and sashing together. 

Quilt using your favorite design.  My super-talented, machine quilting friend, Janet Andres, of The Quilter’s Canvas used interlocking circles across the large blocks.  She quilted evenly spaced rows of zig-zags across the rectangle blocks.
Bind using the remaining 2 1/2” strips.  Join strips diagonally end to end. Bind using your favorite method.

One quilt 57 1/2″ x 80″  –  the perfect size for snuggling up on the couch and looking through your own collection of year books.  How about calling up some friends and having your own impromShoptu “reunion.”

Maybe you were one of those girls in school who had your own sense of style . . .
Try out this versatile quilt in any of your favorite layer cakes for a change of pace.

Shown below is Curio by Basic Grey.

This quilt works great too in the La Petite Ecole line by French General.  The Alphabet Panel was the perfect size for trimming to 10″ squares for use in some of the large blocks.

Like what you see?  We have kits in the shop at so that you can recreate the look of any of colorways pictured above.

Thanks for taking time to sew with me.

Julie Geiger