New to Quilting?

If you are brand new to quilting and don't know where to begin, start with the posts in September 2011 (look in the blog archive). The first four posts cover basics such as choosing equipment, choosing colors, how to sew 1/4" seams, how to use a rotary cutter, and how to press (not iron) your block during construction.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Road to Oklahoma – Quilt Block Tutorial

Road to Oklahoma
8" finished
Step 1: Cutting the fabric

Fabric A: background fabric
  • A1 - cut six 2 1/2" squares
  • A2 - cut two 3" squares
Fabric B: grey (medium color)
  • B1 - cut two 2 1/2" squares
  • B2 - cut two 3" squares
Fabric C: blue (dark) 
  • C - cut four 2 1/2" squares

Step 2: Half-square Triangle Units
I'm trying something new for the rest of the blocks in this quilt. I'm going to press the seams open. Quilters like Leah Day press all their seams open because it makes it easier to machine quilt, especially on a home machine. Here's a link to an article by Candace Eisner Strick about how to press seams. She says it depends on the seam bulk in the block. If there is going to be quite a bit of bulk then she presses her seams open.

Pressing seams open does take longer than pressing to the side. I'm also tempted to invest in The Strip Stick to help with pressing seams open.

Draw a diagonal line on both A2 squares.

Remember to pin the pieces together so they don't shift while you are sewing.
Sew a scant 1/4" seam down both sides of the drawn diagonal line.
Cut along the drawn diagonal line.

Press seams open.

Trim blocks to 2 1/2" square.

Step 3: Sewing the Block Together
Place your blocks on your Design and Pressing board, cutting mat, or whatever you use to bring your block to your sewing machine.

Sew each column of blocks together.
Sew the rows together matching the seams.
I used a pin to match my seams up.

Press from the right side and trim to 8 1/2" square.
Hopefully your cutting and sewing are so accurate you won't have to trim more than a few stray threads.
You can see in the photo above that I'm not a perfect quilter. There is one place where the point doesn't match up very well. Part of that is getting used to seams being pressed open instead of nesting them together.

I think I've fallen in love with the grey polka dots! I may use that fabric in every block from now on. 

I've included a great video called Seams Common Sense with Jennie Rayment and Valerie Nesbitt. The two have a great discussion on the pros and cons of pressing seams open.

Update: Reader blocks! Thanks for sharing!

Jaime's colorway.

No comments:

Post a Comment

I've been spammed like crazy lately! Please take an extra few seconds for the word verification if you are a real person and would like to comment. So sorry for the inconvenience.