One of my favorite techniques that I featured in my book, The Complete Photo Guide to Ribbon Crafts, is ribbon patchwork. I call this the Lazy Log Cabin pattern because it really is a short-cut version of a traditional pieced patchwork block. Except, I am not doing any piecing with different fabrics. I am using rows or ribbons, placed side-by-side, to imitate the look.
The block starts with a center square of ribbon that is fused to a base fabric. Surrounding rows of ribbon are then positioned around the square in rows. Each row covers the raw cut edges of the previous row, creating a very quick and neat log cabin patchwork. Machine zigzag or decorative overcast stitches can be sewn along all the edges, where the ribbons abut.
With all the beautiful woven jacquard ribbons available, it is so much fun to mix and match different patterns and colors of ribbon to make a lazy log cabin block. The ribbons can be cut so as to engineer the placement of a special motif in the center of the block. The outside rows of ribbon can extend out to the edges of the project so they can be caught in a seam or folded back to the wrong side.
Here are is a Lazy Log Cabin Pillow tutorial I did for Fairfield Processing, using a variety of Renaissance Ribbons. This is a great project for using up bits and pieces of ribbons you may have leftover from other projects. Of course the blocks can be used for projects other than pillows – maybe the center of a wall quilt or the front of a tote bag?
I think it is perfectly fine to be a little “lazy” from time to time….