Tuesday, February 7, 2012
Sarah's Block Tutorial
Sarah of Confessions of a Fabric Addict issued this block challenge. Using the ideas from 'Cut The Scraps!', written by Joan Ford and published by The Taunton Press; she recommends cutting your scraps into 5", 3.5", and 2" squares to aid in organization of your scraps. And with the entry, you give permission for Sarah's ministry group to use your block for their lovely and generous work in donation quilts.
This is my initial layout and test block - the tutorial will be using other fabrics. I used 4 fabrics - one being my focus fabric. Dimensions: two - 2" squares of cordinating fabric (number 1), one - 2" square of another cordinating fabric (number 2), one - 3.5" square and one 2" x 6.5" strip of solid, and one - 5" square of focus fabric. You will have a 6.5" x 8" final block - yes you can work a quilt with an 'odd' size block!
When doing a number of blocks and rather than cutting individual small pieces - it is quicker and more accurate to build strips and then sub-cut. Start with your "strip section" - cut from your coordinating fabric (referred to as number 1) 2" WOF (width of fabric) and from your solid a 6.5" WOF. Sew these together and press to the solid (this will aid in the block assembly) Sub-cut this strip into 2" wide strips. Yield - 20 pieces.
Now for those 'twosies' - Cut a 2" WOF of coordinating fabric (number 1) and cut a 2" WOF of other coordinating fabric (number 2). Sew these together and press to the number 2 coordinating fabric - the brown in my photo. Sub-cut into 2" sections - yield is 20 pieces.
Next I cut two stips of my solid (yellow dot used) - cut 3.5" WOF and then I laid them on top each other and sub-cut into 3.5" squares. Yield is 12 per strip or total 24 pieces.
Now we need our focus fabric - I cut three strips 5" WOF - you can cut all three laid on top, or two or singly - sub-cut into 5" squares. Yield is eight pieces per strip or total 24 pieces. *TIP* now lay all your units out (stack like units on top each other) like in my layout photo, you will not (hopefully) make an error in the following piecing.
Let's start assembling - Sew your 2 patch pieces to your 3.5" squares; being sure that your coordinating number 2 fabric is the same on all pieces. **note where my brown square is on all those sections chained thru the machine**
Press to the 3.5" square. Check you measurements and trim if necessary. They should be 3.5" x 5". Set those aside in your layout area. *Remember, this helps to be sure you are working your pieces in the correct direction*
We're almost there. Next we will add these newly sewn units to the 5" focus squares. Pay attention to where that 2-patch lays so they are all the same. Again, I just chain them thru the machine.
Press toward the 5" square and you can check your measurements - you should now have a 5" x 8" block.
We are heading to the finish line! Now it's time to sew that strip on. *TIP* keep the strip on the top when piecing so the machine is feeding the larger fabric section evenly thru the feed dogs** The nice thing is, the only seam you have to match are the two 2" corner squares! Again, I am a chain piecer - feed those thru your machine.
Press to the strip. Your blocks should finish out 6.5" x 8".
Here are four blocks together. One row with the larger square facing up and the second row with them facing down. The thing to remember when working with an odd size block like this, you will need more to go across (rows) then down (columns).
This shows you the extra patterns you get with this block thru out the quilt top. This flimsy and extra fabrics are already residing with Sarah as part of my donation to her wonderful group. And since this block was designed for Sarah, I am calling it 'Sarah's Block'.
If you make a quilt from this pattern, please link back to this post for credit - enjoy it. And if you have any questions or problems, please feel free to e-mail me.
Please visit Sarah and see all the blocks submitted, leave her a comment, and drop in on the contributors and leave them a little love.