Welcome to week 1 of the VINTAGE BOWTIE FANCY SEW ALONG! We are so glad you are here!






You’ll certainly need the STRAWBERRY GARDEN BOOK to get started, then simply choose your colorway and that is all you need to “accomplish” for this week – lots more tips on that below!





… this is my scrappy pull that I [Joanna] am calling “summer garden”. It is a mix of many Fig Tree oldies, but goodies, mixed in with some of newest upcoming collection, Portofino, and Jelly & Jam.


Go for a single color or a color theme! (i.e., Red, Green, Patriotic, Halloween, Yellow + Green, Christmas, Scrappy …this list goes on and on!). We have BUNDLES IN THE SHOP for some single color and patriotic versions and I am seriously itchin’ to make one of each!

Check out some of our tips for each kind below!

… this is a single color pull [Susan] that focuses on a variety of orange tones and low volumes with hints of grey and orange


One Color Scrappy:

  • If you are going with one color, it’s helpful to pick a variety of fabrics that covers lots of shades of that color. So for example in the scrappy green sample in the book, you can see that we picked every kind of green shade we could… from the lightest grass green to deeper and darker Fig Tree greens.  You need all of the shades to make it visually interesting.  Likewise, this is true of the scale of the prints… the most “interesting” scrappy quilt will have some prints that are small and geometric or read “solid” and some large florals cut up to add a bit of that special sparkle.
  • The same thing holds true for the low volume prints if you are sticking with the scrappy vibe. You want to have a whole variety of different “tones” of low volumes with everything from the lightest cream, like the eyelet, to large cream florals that will almost read like a color.

… each little pile is a part of the overall plan!


Scrap Bucket Scrappy:

  • So if you want to go totally scrappy, you can literally start cutting pieces from your scrap bucket and add in what is missing as you go. This is a great way to use up what you have especially if your scrap bucket is overflowing.
  • You could also do “controlled scrappy”. I [Joanna] am kind of going that way with my pull. I focused on certain warm summery colors with a slightly muted vibe and cut a lot of my favorite colors in that “feel”. I then added some greys and tans to ground the palette and a BUNCH of low volumes that spanned the full gamut from mellow to busy. I did this very much on purpose because I want some of my bowties to get “lost” in the quit. I feel like in a scrappy quilt like this one, it will help it to look even more like it came straight out of my grandmas’s attic…that is the look I am going for anyway!


  • If you are wanting to go seasonal, it would be as simple as following the suggestions above and choosing seasonal colors. For example, a variety of reds and greens. Or a variety of reds and blues. Pick your cream/ low volumes to coordinate with your theme. So for example, if I was going patriotic, I would make sure that my low volumes had some little stars and hints of blue and red in them to help work with the theme.



If you are looking for some more info on how to use your scrap bucket and still add to it from your stash, Susan has some great tips on that in our FACEBOOK GROUP so go check out her post there.



For me [Joanna], I like to cut the whole palette at least into the strips I am going to use. It helps me to see the whole color grouping I have chosen. When I was cutting this one, I immediately realized I wanted to add some more texty fabrics to my low volumes and I knew I wanted a few more greys in there for some balance.


So I went back into my stash and added those fabrics specifically. I won’t necessarily cut all of my sub-pieces quite yet, but I will definitely cut all of the main strips so I know exactly how it all looks together.

For a different approach, below here are a few more tips from Susan on how she divides up her sewing and cutting…

  • I [Susan] used my scraps, and first off – it is helpful for accuracy to press your fabrics before you cut them! 🙂
  • Use a fresh blade, make sure your rulers are free of nicks, and your cutting mat is in good shape.
  • Cut in batches.  When you cut a scrappy quilt, it can be overwhelming (both having to cut many different fabrics and having fabric strewn all over your sewing space). Spread it out over a few days.
    • I cut (20) blocks at a time, and put them in groups of (20) on design boards.  That way while working through the weekly assignment I knew how many I needed to finish each week and it would be easy to just jump right in and sew. I am doing the large version, so my last week has (30) blocks on it.
  • Cut 5 or so more blocks than you think you might need.  This is helpful for when you are laying out your blocks. It gives you a few extra to play around with and swap for balance.



We will be doing an introductory giveaway on INSTAGRAM tomorrow so be sure to come and comment on the post in order to be entered! We will have a few of these throughout the sew along so don’t miss out on each chance to enter!



Here are a couple other “pulls” from our Figgy friends. So many different ideas!!


Check back on Thursday for our FIG FRIEND (DOUBLE) FEATURE…Susan Vaughan and Sinta Borland with their VINTAGE BOWTIE FANCY quilts, of course!

Happy Sewing!


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  3. Lisa Schmitz | 14th May 24

    This SAL is going to be fun. I love seeing all of the different fabric pulls. I can’t wait to see them finished!

    • | 18th May 24

      Me too! So many amazing fabric pulls are popping up. Thanks for joining us!

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