Primitive Gatherings Pinwheel Tool

Sew you want to know how to use the Primitive Gatherings Pinwheel Tool? Meet Laurel and find out!

Laurel began working at Keepsake Quilting (at her husband’s suggestion!) about sixteen years ago after spending a few years being a stay-at-home mom. At first she worked exclusively in the shop, but now you might also find yourself talking to her at the call center. When she first began at KQ, Laurel was not a quilter. Had her husband known how avid a crafter she was going to become, he probably would not have suggested the job!  She dabbled at first with checkerboard quilts before discovering a love of tools and notions like Thangles, the 30 degree ruler, and the pinwheel tool we will be explaining below. Her general philosophy is “the brighter, the bolder, the better!”  Her favorite tools are graph paper and colored pencils for planning out her next creations. Currently she is finishing up the Twister Jack pumpkin and a half square triangle baby quilt, as well as always working on a mythical hexagon quilt we at the shop have been hearing about for ages. We’ve watched her gather fabrics for at least the past two years! Some day that hexagon quilt will be done, and we can’t wait to see it!
Because of her love of tools, we knew Laurel would be the perfect person to demo how to use the Primitive Gatherings Pinwheel tool.  This is one of those tools you look at and wonder… how does this work? It’s really very easy!  We thought we’d use our Twister Jack pattern to demonstrate…
The first step is to sew together squares to create your image. The pumpkin looks a little goofy, and once you’ve added the borders, it ends up being a lot bigger than you’d expect for a finished hanging of 24″ x 26″!
TJ1
Next comes the fun!  We used the Primitive Gatherings tool to make this project, however there are many different versions and sizes of this tool—there’s even one smaller than what we used here!  On the tool you can see two interesting lines at odd angles.
TJ2
Place the lines on the tool over the lines of your seems, so that the intersection of the lines on the tool fit exactly over the intersecting lines of your squares.
TJ3
Cut all the way around the tool!  We recommend using the 18mm or 28mm OLFA rotary cutter to do this.
TJ-4&5
Continue doing this, going row by row, throughout the entire pieced top.  Your original large goofy pumpkin will begin to look a bit like swiss cheese.
TJ6
We highly recommend pinning and/or sewing each line right away.
TJ7
You do NOT want to piece this puzzle back together again!
TJ8
Before you know it, all your rows will be done and you will have a gorgeous pumpkin to hang on your wall! We also have a Butterfly and Twister Sparkler pattern that use this same technique!

5505-TwisterJack

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7 Responses to Primitive Gatherings Pinwheel Tool

  1. Christina Reitz says:

    This looks amazing! Now I want one of those tools for myself…

  2. Sharon Haile says:

    How large are the cut squares before you sew them together and then cut agin? Thank you

  3. Leslie Bulken says:

    I gotta get this tool!Q

  4. Kimberly says:

    Thank you for doing a tutorial on this! I am very excited to make my own and this tutorial makes it so much easier.

    One question, how did you iron the seams?

    • Keepsake Quilting says:

      Hi Kimberly,

      The pattern does not specify ironing instructions. We’d recommend piecing the blocks, then ironing as you go as you normally would. You would then cut them apart per the instructions.

  5. EVELYN says:

    I saw a quilt pattern on tv ,a few years ago,the measurement was a circle 11 1/2 ,with a square 10 1/2 that fit inside of the circle ,the square was not sewn down ,there were many more pieces of squares sewn down some kind of way and was added together.I should have wrote down the pieces of cicles and squares.please try to figure this out for me,it look so easy ,but I can not remember.,how to put it together. thanks
    Evelyn

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