Sunday, May 3, 2020
A little bit of housekeeping. Once I figure out how to do it, I will set up a Google drive and save the clues as PDFs so you can print them out. If you've missed clues, they are all saved individually on the blog.
Today's blocks are classic Indiana Puzzle blocks, picked by Sally. These are not difficult, with the exception of the block center. Technically, even that is easy to piece, but at this size, cutting the center square the traditional way is ugly -- a 3 5/16" square. I don't know about you, but I don't want to mess with 1/16" measurements! Paper piecing is a great way to get around that ugliness
If you've never done paper piecing, this is a good block to start with. There are no funky angles, the unit is symmetrical (which is helpful when you're working in reverse), and your center will measure exactly 4 1/2" when you're done.
For paper piecing, use an 80/12 needle (90/14 is fine, too) and shorten your stitch length to make the paper easier to remove. You will need an add-a-quarter ruler, fine pins or a removable glue stick, and a postcard. Dotted lines are cutting lines and solid lines are sewing lines.
Leave a comment on the blog or on Facebook and I will send you a PDF of the foundation pattern for the block center.
Cutting instructions for one 12" finished block.
|Coordinating Fabric 1 (star)||
|Cut one 5" strip||Cut two 5" squares|
Cut one 3 3/4" square (I used a scrap)
Coordinating Fabric 2 (background)
Cut one 5" strip
||Cut four 5" squares|
|Focus Fabric (black dots -- star points)||
|Cut one 5" strip||Cut two 5" squares|
|Cut one 3 3/4" strip||Cut two 3 3/4" squares
||Cut each square once on the diagonal to yield 4 triangles|
Using the two-at-a-time method for making HST, make four focus + background HSTs using the 5" squares. Trim to 4 1/2" square.
Repeat for the 5" star fabric squares and the background squares.
You will need two copies of the foundation pattern. Be sure to print them actual size, don't use scaling or fit to page or they may be the wrong size! The units should measure 4 1/2" when printed.
Trim away the excess paper from the foundation pattern, cutting 1/8" outside the outer dotted line. Position the 3 3/4" square of fabric 1 right side up on the UNPRINTED side of the foundation over A1, making sure the fabric extends at least 1/4" over all A1 lines. Pin in place as shown or use a dab of removable glue stick. All fabric goes on the unprinted side of the paper, and you will sew on the printed side.
With the printed side up, place your postcard on the line between A1 and A2, and fold the paper back over the card on the line. The postcard helps make a nice clean fold. Run your fingernail over the fold to make it easier to remove the paper later.
Place the lip of your add-a-quarter ruler on the fold, and trim away the excess. This gives you a perfect 1/4: seam allowance for the next step. If your fabric doesn't extend at least a thread beyond the edge of the ruler, adjust the placement of your center square.
Flip the foundation over so the fabric is on top. Position a focus fabric triangle face down, matching raw edges. Pin in place.
Flip the foundation over to the printed side, and sew right on the line between A1 and A2. I started sewing at the edge of the paper and sewed all the way off the other end -- you want to make sure that the stitching extends at least 1/4" beyond the beginning and end of the line. Repeat the steps for the opposite corner (fold the paper back, trim the seam, place the next piece matching raw edges, and sew. Press the corners open. Make sure the fabric extends beyond the edge of the paper.
When you add the final two corners, you will need to tear the paper along the sewing line back to the fold line. This unit is ready for trimming.
Press well, and trim the unit on the outer dotted line. Remember, solid lines are sewing lines, dotted lines are cutting lines. Please don't cut on the inner solid line or you'll have to make a new unit!
Leave the paper in place until you have sewn the unit into the block.
Lay out your units as shown and sew together in rows.
Yay! isn't that fun? Your completed block should measure 12 1/2" (will finish at 12").
Here is where we stand after today's blocks: