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33.2 Kings Royal Red Puzzle quilt top complete

November 30, 2013

The main thing I worked on at the last quilting retreat, and the last two weekends since, has been the Kings Puzzle quilt.

The pattern is called King’s Puzzle, created by Lois Hatleberg, and published by QuiltWoman.com

This past weekend I finished sewing all the blocks together and all the sashing together in the blocks.

kings puzzle top outside

The original pattern done with a light background and dark red blocks. Our LQS had a light background and blue for the dark areas.

kings puzzle quilt

And I had thought I was going to attempt this a year ago, and at that time I had cut out strips for all the dark reds. But I was missing something. I didn’t quite have enough fabric for the whole quilt to be that red & that black.

So in my mind I set out to do 3 different colors of reds. A dark, medium & light, but all very saturated reds.

Two days before leaving on retreat I found the right color of ‘bright (light value) red’ for the quilt, and I had already bought the other two reds.

It was hard to estimate how much of each red I would need since I knew I was going to separate out the middle and edge of each design. In fact I pretty much ran out of (twice) the middle color of red that dominates much of the quilt space.

Before I started actually cutting this time around, I did some diagramming & thinking.

kings puzzle self instructions page 1

First I had to know the general area for medium & dark & light and then I had to count them. Never underestimate symbols and colored pencils in helping plan out things.

I used symbols such as L for light, D for dark in sections that would be important.

And then I just had to flat out count what I had.

And then I redrew the strip sets & calculated (wrongly originally for the row 6 actually) how many of each I would need based from the drawing I had done above.

kings puzzle self instructions page 2 and 3

And then I had to estimate how many strips to make of each color and label, label, label.

labeled strips by width for each row

And then I could make strip sets.

kings puzzle strip set

And then cut the strip sets into strips for the final blocks.

kings puzzle strips and more strips

And then get the strips in order to make the blocks.

kings puzzle first block layout before sewing together

After making several blocks. This was the last afternoon of retreat how far I was some time in the middle of that afternoon.

kings puzzle quilt blocks on design wall

I worked then on getting all the sashing complete (or close) before leaving the retreat center.

DSC05673

And so upon coming home I had a few sashing pieces to rip out because when I changed one of the long sashing sub-pieces, I didn’t rename it a different name and so didn’t create enough smaller sub-pieces of the right size.

And then a few blocks to complete.

one chunked section of kings puzzle quilt

And so now I have the top complete, minus borders.

kings puzzle top complete inside

Good thing I had things ultra organized & sticky noted and grouped & pinned. It helped tremendously in getting the thing together without wanting to tear out my hair. Or stop. I would have stopped on this, I never would have gotten back to it.

Not complicated, but very time consuming.

A true bargello? I don’t know, but it is of the same style, strip sets broken up & resewn together.

And a border fabric? I have two possibilities!

kings puzzle quilt border choices

11 comments

  1. It’s gorgeous! You must be so proud…I sure would be!


    • Oh yes, this one is one of my favorites. Love the optical look of it and love the red/black mix that I don’t use that often in my projects! Thanks!


  2. Excuse the cap lock here, but it’s required – I LOVE IT!!! SOOOO pretty!


    • You’re so sweet! Thanks, this was fun to do! If time consuming. 😉


  3. Such beautiful work. And both of the backing fabric choices would be perfect. I like each of them for different reasons.


  4. Amazing job. It is gorgeous.


  5. What an AWESOME quilt!!! Thanks for sharing your process from plan to assemble.


  6. I am in awe. You’ve done a fantastic job. I can’t wait to have the skills to attempt something like this. It puts me in mind of fractal cross stitching


  7. I’m speechless! So beautiful!


  8. Darla it is ABSOLUTELY BEAUTIFUL! Seriously, I would love to see it in person because it has to be more vibrant and the photos are fabulous. Thanks for sharing you process. Love it


  9. Your quilt is beautiful. The colors really make it exceptional.



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