I am very lucky to have been asked to make up samples for fabric company John Louden & Co, and was presented with some of their fat quarter packs to have a play with. When I unwrapped the five packs of Tie-Dye fat quarters and spread them out in colour order, I just thought "this will have to be a Bargello", even though I've never done one in my life... but how hard can it be!!
I started sewing sets of five fabrics together which made it easier when it came to the cutting. Once I decided what width strips I wanted to create the Bargello pattern, I used my hall as my design wall and with the help of some pretty useless masking tape, I went along moving each strip up or down to create this amazing wave effect. Luckily I made a note of each strip number and width as one morning I woke up to find half the strips on the floor... did I mention it was useless masking tape!?!
Anyway, so I then went about unpicking the relevant seam and reattaching it to the top of each strip, which completed this fantastic pattern. Once I'd sewn all the strips together, then came the really tedious bit, pressing all the seams open to reduce the bulk! This took 3 hours, and I really hate ironing at the best of times!
Having said that, flat seams really did help when it came to quilting - for speed I decided to do some free-motion swirls over the entire top, which did get a little tricky over the thin strips because of all the seams, but I think it looks effective and breaks up the vertical lines of the Bargello.
For full colour instructions including a very detailed plan of your strip layout, please contact John Louden.