Friday, August 23, 2013

Virtual Quilting Bee: Starflake Block Tutorial

Hi there! My name is Brooke and this is my little piece of the blogosphere. If you're here from Amy's blog, Diary of Quilter, welcome! Take a few minutes to look around. I hope you'll like what you see.


I was excited when Amy asked me to participate in her virtual quilting bee (more details here). Amy is one of the most wonderful people, so if you ever get the chance to meet her, you're one lucky person!

Virtual Quilting Bee Block Tutorial

This block is comprised of four half square triangles (HSTs), four flying geese units, four rectangles, and one square-in-square block. Depending on the focus you want the block to take, you can make several variations of this block: two color, scrappy, monochromatic, low contrast, and more. At the end of this tutorial, I'll show you how this block can look different just by changing your fabric placement.

Cutting Directions

Note: When I refer to "print A" or "print B," I just mean that the unit itself should have two separate fabrics, not that prints A and B are consistently the same fabric throughout the tutorial.

HSTs
From two fabrics, cut the following:
(2) 3 3/8" squares of print A
(2) 3 3/8" squares of print B (top left in the photo below)

Flying Geese
From two fabrics, cut the following:
(4) 3 1/2" x 2"strips of print A
(8) 2" squares of print B (top right in the photo below)

Rectangles
From one fabric, cut the following:
(4) 3 1/2" x 1 1/2" strips (bottom right in the photo below)

Square-in-Square
From two fabrics, cut the following:
(1) 3 1/2" square of print A
(4) 2" squares of print B (bottom left in the photo below)

Virtual Quilting Bee Block Tutorial

Pre-Assembly Directions

Grab a pencil or fabric marking pen and the following pieces of fabric you just cut:
(12) 2" squares
(2) 3 3/8" squares (make sure the two prints are the same)

Mark a line on each piece of fabric on the diagonal.

Virtual Quilting Bee Block Tutorial

HSTs
Take the (2) 3 3/8" squares that you marked and place them right sides facing on the (2) 3 3/8" unmarked squares. (Refer to the image on the right in the photo below.)

Flying Geese
Take (1) 2" square and (1) 3 1/2" x 2" strip. Place the square on top of the strip as shown in the top left image below, ensuring that the line you drew extends from the bottom left corner to the top middle of the strip.

Repeat with (3) more squares and (3) more strips.

Square-in-Square
Take (2) 2" squares and (1) 3 1/2" square. Place the 2" squares on opposite corners of the larger square, right sides facing, ensuring that the diagonal lines you drew on each square do not extend into the corners. (Refer to the image in the bottom left of the photo below.)

Virtual Quilting Bee Block Tutorial

Sub-Block Piecing Directions

For each flying geese unit and the square-in-square block, you need to stitch directly on the diagonal line you drew on the 2" squares. Refer to the next two photos.

Virtual Quilting Bee Block Tutorial

Virtual Quilting Bee Block Tutorial

For the HSTs, sew 1/4" on each side of the drawn line rather than on the line itself.

Virtual Quilting Bee Block Tutorial

Piecing this blocks goes quickly if you chain piece assembly-line style.

Virtual Quilting Bee Block Tutorial

Once you've sewn along your lines, next comes the cutting part.

HSTs
Cut along the line you drew.

Virtual Quilting Bee Block Tutorial

Flying Geese
Cut 1/4" away from the stitched line.

Virtual Quilting Bee Block Tutorial

Square-in-Square
Cut 1/4" away from each stitched line, toward the outside corners.

Virtual Quilting Bee Block Tutorial

Pressing Directions

Once you've stitched and cut each unit up to this point, press your units open to minimize bulk.

Virtual Quilting Bee Block Tutorial

Virtual Quilting Bee Block Tutorial

Remaining Pre-Assembly Directions

Flying Geese
With the remaining (4) 2" squares, repeat the steps noted above for the flying geese units. Refer to the photo below to place the squares with the diagonal lines running in the right direction on each strip. Make sure to place the fabrics right sides together.

Virtual Quilting Bee Block Tutorial

Square-in-Square
Take the (2) remaining 2" squares for the square-in-square block and place them on the opposite corners from where you placed the previous squares. Refer to the photo below for correct placement of the diagonal lines.

Virtual Quilting Bee Block Tutorial

Remaining Sub-Block Piecing Directions

Stitch along the diagonal lines for both the square-in-square block and the remaining flying geese units. Trim 1/4" from the sewn lines.

Virtual Quilting Bee Block Tutorial

Virtual Quilting Bee Block Tutorial

Remaining Pressing Directions

Press these remaining seams open to reduce bulk.

Virtual Quilting Bee Block Tutorial

Virtual Quilting Bee Block Tutorial

Block Assembly Directions

Now that all your sub-units are pieces, lay the blocks out like so.

Virtual Quilting Bee Block Tutorial

Piece the 3 1/2" x 1 1/2" strips to each flying geese unit.

Then piece each sub-unit into rows and then piece the rows together. You'll end up with a block like this, which measures 8 1/2" unfinished.

Virtual Quilting Bee Block Tutorial

Now that you've completed your block, here are a few others that show how different the block can look based on the fabrics as well as the layout.

For this solid fabric block, I reversed the direction of the flying geese units.

Virtual Quilting Bee Block Tutorial

And here's my initial test block. The fabrics in this block have the same level of contrast, creating a softer, more low volume look.

Virtual Quilting Bee Block Tutorial

Now, if you make more blocks in each varied style, you could have a quilt that looks like this:

Virtual Quilting Bee Block Tutorial

or this:

Virtual Quilting Bee Block Tutorial

or this:

Virtual Quilting Bee Block Tutorial

I have to say that while I like the individual block I made out of the Happy Go Lucky fabrics, I like how dramatic the Kona block layout is.

If you've missed any of the previous block tutorials, you can catch up on them here. Also, make sure to add your blocks to the Flickr group so we can all see!

Please let me know if you run into any problems while making this block. I'm happy to answer any questions or help out in any way that I can.

5 comments:

Staci said...

This is fabulous! I can't wait to try it!!

Quiltstory said...

Love the block! Great fabric choices!

lattegirl40 said...

love both versions!!! I'm making both!!

Barbie Mills said...

I love the alternate layout, it's so striking! Nice design, Brooke.

Paula@TheSassyQuilter said...

Looking forward to making this one. Love the choices here:)

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