Thursday, March 10, 2016

Friends Around the Square

Hi Everyone!

My name is Julie and I am sew excited to present today's featured block for The Splendid Sampler. I own Patched Works in Elm Grove, Wisconsin.


This is a photo of me and Pat from Fall Market.

At Patched Works, we focus on quilting fundamentals to help make quilting a more enjoyable, rewarding experience. I chose a simple pieced block as my contribution to offer a basic skill building exercise.

My block is called "Friends Around the Square"



About 15 years ago, I was at a quilt retreat working on a quilt with a lot of half square triangles (HST). I was painstakingly template cutting each triangle, pairing it with another and stitching on the bias edge to creating each little block. My blocks were beautiful, they just were taking a little bit of time. My table mate looked over and exclaimed "What are you doing?" She showed me her Quick Quarter ruler and the rest is history. We all start somewhere and even though I had been sewing and quilting since I was a young girl and I now own a quilt shop, I find that I learn new things almost every day.

Throughout this journey and your entire quilting career, you will find there are MANY ways to achieve the same result. I always recommend to students to learn as many methods as possible so that you have many tricks in your toolbox. As you learn more techniques you can choose one method over another, you can say, "I know how to do it that way, I am simply choosing to do it another way."

I know how to template cut triangles and sew pairs together into HST, however today I choose a different way. :-) 

Now let's get started!

Cut your fabric according to the directions provided in the pattern.



Cut 2 large squares in half once diagonally for the frame of the block. 


Next, pair up light and dark squares right sides together and position a Quick Quarter ruler from point to point. 



See how the tip aligns perfectly in the corner?



Using a Sewline Ceramic Lead Pencil, carefully draw a line on either side of the ruler. Use caution to position the lead as closely to the ruler as possible to draw an accurate sewing line. 



Stitch on the drawn lines. 

Split each square to yield 2 HST. 



Press open. (You can press to the dark side if you prefer.) 

Trim all 4 HST to 2 5/8" squares. Don't be afraid of the 2 5/8" measurement. 



Position your 4 HST as shown in the picture and assemble as a 4 patch. 



Your center block should measure 4 3/4" 

Position the 4 cut triangles around the perimeter of the center block. 



Align one triangle to the center seam of the square and pin carefully. 



***Note the ample overhang on both edges. It is supposed to be this way!!! 



Stitch 1/4" seam

Repeat on all 4 sides. 

Viola! Look at your beautiful block! 



Pat and Jane included a bonus paper pieced version if you prefer. 

I created a little video for you too! :-) 




I can't wait to see what you make!

Thank you for reading! I hope you visit again soon!

Julie




23 comments:

  1. Thank you Julie! I can't wait t get started!

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  2. Julie, thank you for joining in on this sampler quilt and providing us with your Friends around the Square block. Simple blocks can be the most fun to work with and this group will come up with some awesome blocks.

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  3. Thanks Julie, looking forward to selecting fabric and sewing your beautiful design

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  4. Love, love this! Even though I knew it, thanks for showing the "ample overhang", a lot of quilters do not and it is good to be reminded.

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  5. Hi, Julie, I'm up here in Alberta, Canada but lived in Milwaukee for quite a few years. I was so excited to see you as a designer for the Splendid Sampler. It's like having a friend who is a celebrity. I'm visiting kids this spring and intend on bringing my future daughter-in-law to Patched Works to pick out her wedding quilt. See you then.

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  6. Thanks for your block Julie! and especially thanks for the video and your detailed tutorial. This really helps!!

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  7. thank you taking the time to provide this beautiful block and such easy to follow instructions. Going off now to my sewing room to start my block. Linda Fredlund of Salmon Arm BC

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  8. You included how to paper piece your block #8 in the splindid sampler. Do you want us to follow your cut and piece instructions or do paper piecing? Which one sticks to what you as the designer are looking for?

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    1. Oh goodness, your choice. I love paper piecing and the pattern is well suited for it. I was chosen to present a traditionally pieces block, so that is how I demonstrated the technique. Please feel free to make the best way you are comfortable!

      Happy quilting!

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    2. Thanks. I haven't seen people doing paper piecing with this block but I got all excited because I learned to do this recently and I love it. So much fun!

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    3. Thanks. I haven't seen people doing paper piecing with this block but I got all excited because I learned to do this recently and I love it. So much fun!

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  9. Thank you for showing the "ample overhang"! I wasn't always sure if I was doing it the right way...now I know! :)

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  10. Oh goodness, your choice. I love paper piecing and the pattern is well suited for it. I was chosen to present a traditionally pieces block, so that is how I demonstrated the technique. Please feel free to make the best way you are comfortable!

    Happy quilting!

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  11. Thank you for showing the "ample overhang"! I wasn't always sure if I was doing it the right way...now I know! :)

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  12. Can't wait to make your pretty block. Thank you for the great tutorial!

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  13. thank julie, is a beautiful block

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  14. Really enjoyed making this block. Thank you.

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  15. I bought a quick quarter ruler just before I moved to Colorado and forgot all about it. but I just went and found it (in the first place I looked I might add) Thanks for reminding me... Looking forward to doing this block as well as all the Splendid Sampler blocks

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  16. HI Julie! thank you for your block! I really enjoyed piecing it together. I just have one question as I am not so experienced piecing all these HST. I am sometimes having trouble getting my points to match up...sometimes there is a little "jog" at the point. I had to rip out several times and keep trying to get it right. Do you have any advice how to match the points better? I would appreciate it!

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  17. Julie thank you so much for being part of our project! I had SO MUCH FUN making your block.. i can see a whole quilt of these!! And your tutorial is so helpful. hope to see you in Salt lake!

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  18. Thanks Julie for your block....it was a great one to make....you have a great tutorial too!! We are all very lucky to have joined this group!!

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  19. This is an adorable tutorial video! Thanks for providing it!

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  20. Thank you for your contribution and your tutorial! I am finally catching up today and making yours and two other blocks.

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