How cornerstones and flange accents add a pop of color to your quilt

Yesterday, I showed you how to overcome the fear of piecing with random fabrics. I’ve finished up all 20 of my Full Bloom pieced blocks and now we need to sew them together to make the quilt top. In the process, I also wanted to share with you 2 ways I use to add a pop of color to my quilts.

The Full Bloom block

The first step is for us to sew a black sashing strip to the right side of 15 of the quilt blocks – there will be 5 blocks left that don’t have a sashing strip sewn to them. Press the seams towards the sashing strips and then arrange the blocks in five rows of four blocks each. Each row will have three blocks that have sashing sewn to them and one that doesn’t (on the right end of the row).

When you have a pleasing arrangement, sew the rows together and number them or place them back on your design wall in order.

Adding the sashing strips

Adding sashing cornerstones

When I’m designing quilts, I often add sashing strips to either make the quilt bigger (without making more blocks) or to add to the overall design of the quilt by separating the blocks. When you add sashing strips that are all one color it gives the quilt a cohesive look and makes the blocks the focus. Our Mosaic Maze quilt pattern features this type of sashing:

Mosaic Maze quilt pattern

But if you wanted to add a pop of colour to your quilt, one easy way is to use cornerstones that separate the sashing strips at the corner of each block. In my Opposites Attract pattern, the orange cornerstones give an otherwise monochromatic quilt, a touch of pizzazz:

Opposites Attract quilt pattern

We’re going to add a pop of WHITE to our quilt by using the colorful polka dots on the white background from the Full Bloom line that was cut into 1½” squares as cornerstones in between our black sashing strips.

Sew four sashing strips together with three cornerstones to make one sashing row and then repeat to make a total of four rows. Press seams towards the sashing strips so that the sashing cornerstone seams will nest in nicely with the seams between the blocks and vertical sashing strips.

Press towards the sashing strips

Sew the first two rows of blocks together with one of the sashing rows. As you can see, by pressing the seams in opposite directions, the polka dot sashing cornerstone looks lovely.

The sashing cornerstone after pressing

Sew the rows of blocks together with the sashing rows in between. Press.

The first two rows with a sashing row

Next, sew the black 2″ strips end to end with a mitered join. Measure the length of the quilt and cut two borders this exact length. Sew them to the right and left sides of the quilt. Measure the width of the quilt and cut two borders this exact measurement. Sew these to the top and bottom.

Add an accent flange

Another way to add a little pop of color (or a pop of white as in this lap quilt) is to add an accent flange in between two borders on the quilt.

We’re using the 1″ strips of white polka dot Full Bloom fabric to make a flange to go between our black inner border and the striped outer border. The first step is to sew the flange strips together end to end with a mitered join and then press this long strip in half lengthwise with wrong sides together.

Flange strip pressed in half lengthwise

Measure the length of the quilt and cut two flange strips this exact length. Sew them to the right and left sides of the quilt using a ⅛” seam.

Attach with a ⅛” seam

Measure the width of the quilt and cut two flange strips this exact measurement. Sew these to the top and bottom, again using a ⅛” seam. The flange accent strips are overlapped on the corners of the quilt as shown below.

The corner with the overlapped flange strips

Now we’re ready for our striped outside border!

I’m loving how this Full Bloom quilt is turning out and I’ve got a couple tricks that I like to use when sewing with striped fabrics. Join me tomorrow, I’ll share those with you. See you then!

This is part 4 of 5 in this series.
Go back to part 3: How to overcome your fear of piecing blocks with random fabrics

Go to part 5: 2 simple tips for a flawless quilt border using striped fabric

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Deb C October 10, 2017 - 3:40 am
I am planning a faux piping binding on my next quilt. This is similar.
Carmen October 8, 2017 - 11:15 am
I love the mosiac maze quilt and the sashing your used in it.
Christine Baker October 8, 2017 - 8:44 pm
Thank you!
Delaine October 6, 2017 - 4:20 pm
I have never been able to figure out how to square up panels before, and now with your tutorial about adding a border, using panels will be so much easier. I also love your flange tutorial. Thanks!
Christine Baker October 8, 2017 - 8:49 pm
Thanks Delaine - Northcott has some beautiful panels! Have fun playing with them.
Quilting Jeannie October 5, 2017 - 8:08 pm
I've used flange accents before, but never corner stones. That's a nice look. Thanks for the good photos and instructions.
Christine Baker October 5, 2017 - 8:30 pm
Thank you - I'm glad you like them! I use cornerstones all the time.
Marilyn S October 5, 2017 - 5:50 pm
Great tutorial and excellant explanation of your thinking. Beautiful quilts!!
Christine Baker October 5, 2017 - 8:32 pm
Thanks Marilyn!
Cindy October 5, 2017 - 2:27 pm
Wow! I love this tutorial. I have the perfect dragonfly fabric!
Christine Baker October 5, 2017 - 8:34 pm
Thanks Cindy! I'm glad you found the post informative. Have fun with your fabric - I LOVE dragonflies!!
Allison October 5, 2017 - 11:49 am
Love those fabrics and the flange!!
Christine Baker October 5, 2017 - 8:40 pm
Thanks Allison - those fabrics are so beautiful and inspiring!!
Laura G. October 5, 2017 - 11:21 am
I'm always intrigued by things like the flange tip.
Carla A. Canonico October 5, 2017 - 11:27 am
Oh yes, to many it's intriguing! Keep these notes handy and give it a whirl!
Christine Baker October 5, 2017 - 8:41 pm
Thanks Laura!! There are always lots of good tips on QUILTsocial :)
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