Picture: 10 Years BSR - Robyn Betts

From the USA

Tiny Protoquilt

Picture: 10 Years BSR - Robyn Betts

Here’s a small project that uses the amazing Bernina Stitch Regulator (BSR). It’s a tiny protoquilt: something a little bigger than a coaster, much, much smaller than a regular quilt. This would be a great first project for trying out the BSR.  In this tutorial, you’ll also learn how to use a stencil for your free- motion quilting design. It’s a fun technique to try if you don’t yet feel comfortable or artistic enough to do free motion designs.  Happy quilting!

For the full tutorial, please visit my blog post.

Materials

  • 10-15 2 1/2′′ wide by ~1.5 – 2′′H pieces. Scraps work great for this!
  • Solid fabric for the quilt top. I’m using two strips: one that is about 2′′ x 6 1/2′′, one that is 1 3/4′′ x 6 1/2′′ and one piece that’s 6′′ x 6.1/2′′
  • Quilt back: 14′′ x 6 1/2′′
  • One piece of batting: 14′′ x 6 1/2′′
  • Double-fold quilt binding
  • Thread that matches your solid fabric
  • A stencil (optional)
  • Quilt Pounce or a chalk pencil (optional)
Note: If you don’t have a stencil, you can use a chalk pencil and your own design, drawn by freehand, if you wish.

Picture: 10 Years BSR - Robyn Betts

CREATING THE PATCHWORK STRIPS

  1. First, cut out a bunch of blocks that are 2 1/2′′ x a between 1 and 3 inches tall. The height is up to you. The end goal is to get two strips of patchwork that are 2 1/2′′ W and 6 1/2′′ H when finished. Sew your patches together on the 2 1/2′′ edges.

Picture: 10 Years BSR - Robyn Betts

  1. Sew them all up together until you have two strips measuring 2 1/2′′W x 6 1/2′′

Picture: 10 Years BSR - Robyn Betts

  1. Iron open the seams of your patchwork strips

CONSTRUCTING THE TINY PROTOQUILT SANDWICH

  1. Cut your solid fabric. I am using a strip about 2′′ x 6 1/2 on the far left, and a slightly narrower strip between my two patchwork strips. The larger square on the right is about 6′′W x 6 1/2 H.
  2. Find the complementing fabric of your choice – a couple of thinner strips, then a larger block that’s about 6′′ wide or so. 

Picture: 10 Years BSR - Robyn Betts

  1. Sew your solid strips together with the patchwork strips. Iron the seams so that they are flat.
     
  2. Put your Bernina to work and sew them all up together!
     
  3. Square up your quilt top, if you need to. (I always need to!)

Picture: 10 Years BSR - Robyn Betts

  1. Cut your backing fabric to be the same size as your quilt top 
     
  2. Place the piece of cotton batting between your quilt top and backing. All of the right sides should be facing out, like in the picture.

Picture: 10 Years BSR - Robyn Betts

Picture: 10 Years BSR - Robyn Betts

QUILTING AND STENCILING!

  1. In my tiny protoquilt, I’ve chosen to do some straight lines near the patchwork strips. I think that highlights them nicely. 
     
  2. If you’re choosing to use a stencil, now’s the time to take it out. I found this lovely flower pattern that was both large and relatively simple-looking.

Picture: 10 Years BSR - Robyn Betts

  1. If you’ve decided to try out Quilt Pounce, now’s the time to get this out, too. Quilt Pounce reminds me of a cross between a blackboard eraser and a sponge. It’s hard on top, with a hole for chalk Put the chalk inside the hole, close the top, and tap on a hard surface until chalk starts coming out evenly from the bottom. The bottom is a furry, spongy surface that allows for the chalk to come out. The chalk disappears with a hot iron. Magic!

Picture: 10 Years BSR - Robyn Betts

  1. Place your stencil where you want. Quilt Pounce recommends wiping the eraser/sponge across the stencil twice. Hold the stencil in place so it doesn’t move around. Remove the stencil and marvel at how easy it was to transfer the stencil design! Now it’s just waiting for some delightful BSR attention!

BSR YOUR WAY TO SUCCESS

  1. Get your BSR all set up to run.
     
  2. Trace the stencil lines with your BSR and watch as the most delightfully even stitches appear before your eyes. With this stencil, I had to go over some lines twice to get to all the lines.
Tip: Steer clear of the edges when quilting! If you find yourself getting towards an edge, you may notice that the sensor stops working and the BSR gets a little finicky. The light of the BSR must stay on fabric to work effectively. If you run into trouble, simply turn the mini-protoquilt 90 degrees or so that the light is shining ON the quilt (not off the edge) and quilt in a different direction.

Picture: 10 Years BSR - Robyn Betts

  1. Behold your beautiful work. Square up and trim your edges. Iron your piece and watch the chalk disappear!

Picture: 10 Years BSR - Robyn Betts

Picture: 10 Years BSR - Robyn Betts

QUILT BINDING AND DONE!

  1. Take double-wide binding that you either bought or made and attach.
     
  2. Iron the finished product one more time to remove any remaining Quilt Pounce and to make sure it’s nice and flat.

  1. Behold your beautiful tiny protoquilt! Great work!

Picture: 10 Years BSR - Robyn Betts

Picture: 10 Years BSR - Robyn Betts

I purchased the BERNINA aurora 440 and it came with the BSR.

"I adore how easily the BSR enables me to add beautiful detail to my projects.”