I finished the raw edge log cabin!
Here’s what I had to trim off of it after I washed it.
I think its so pretty, and I love the oriental heron blocks that I added. I also added some fun fabrics in the border. I did it just like I said, with just the log cabin, the muslin (that the log cabin was constructed on, ) and the backing. Three layers of fabric (no batting) for a nice lightweight topper for my bed this summer.
This comes under the category “if you think of it, try it!” Those have been words of wisdom for me from Marianne Burr. In evaluating whether this was a worthy technique, here are some of my observations: I don’t think it saved much time to make this raw edge. I sewed twice as many seams (maybe unnecessarily, but I wanted to be sure the raw edges were secure.) And then there was the endless trimming after I washed it, and again after I dried it. I shouldn’t have been surprised, I have used this technique before in collage quilts.
The positive values: no ironing! If I had been doing a one inch log cabin (come to think of it, I have been working on one for a few years now…) there would have been a LOT of ironing of little seams as I went along. And as I placed each block on the backing I quilted it in place, so essentially as I pieced the front, I also was quilting it. I decided that to keep with the raw edge theme, I would not add a binding. I just sewed around the edge twice more to make sure it was secure, and then I cut the extra backing off with scissors. I didn’t worry about “squaring it up” or using a rotary cutter. Very freeing.