Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Alternating Blocks

I am using an "Alabama Variation" block (9") as the alternating blocks on my quilt along block.

Because I need to make 41 of these blocks for the large quilt I have decided to strip piece them. To get the effect of diamonds around the scrappy blocks you need a light fabric and a dark fabric (I have chosen beige), and a contrasting fabric to form the X (I have chosen black). EQ7 estimates the amount of fabric to be 2 yards for each beige and 1½ yards for the black (I have found that EQ tends to overestimate the amounts of fabric needed - but I didn't want to take any chances on not having enough and bought what was recommended) . You could also use scraps.

You will need -

Dark Beige -
1 - 2+3/4" strip width of fabric - WOF
1 - 5" strip WOF
1 - 7¼" strip WOF

Light Beige -
2 - 1+5/8" strip WOF
1 - 5" strip WOF
1 - 7¼" strip WOF

Contrasting fabric -
1 - 2+3/4" strip WOF
6 - 1+5/8" strip WOF

These are the way the strips will be sewn together (it is important to measure and cut accurately so that all the pieces will fit together - you can always make a couple of test blocks to ensure the measurements work).

Two wider light beige strips left over.

The wider (2+3/4") black is sewn with the two 1+5/8" light beige strips on either side. Press seams to the light side.

The narrow black strips are sewn on either sides of the dark beige strips. Press seams to the light side.
Now all the pieced strips need to be cut.

The strip with the black center is cut into 2+3/4" pieces. This is the center of the block (and the only strip that is cut to this size).

All the other strips are cut into 1+5/8" pieces.

Tips -

When I cut with the rotary cutter I make sure my little finger is off the far edge of the ruler to prevent the ruler from slipping - this is important when cutting pieced strips because of the seams (I also cut a couple of layers at once -the strip is folded in half).

When cutting it is also a good idea to move the fabric away before taking your hand off the ruler, to make sure that all the layers of fabric have been cut.

All the cut pieces ready to go!

Sew a short pieced section of either side of the center.

Add the short light beige sections on either side and so on....

You get the idea! Finished!

Tip -Press all the seams to the outside, and pin with seams in opposite directions "nested" together - this is why the seams were pressed to the lighter fabric.

You get the effect of the alternating blocks!!

Have a great day and thanks for stopping by!!


Heather said...

Oh my word, that's gorgeous! I'll have to try your little-finger-off-to-the-side tip.

Colleen said...

Now I am truly excited to begin. Hoping to start on Thursday!

Colleen said...

I will print this one ASAP and thanks for the wonderful step by step instructions. YOU are de bomb.com!!! as my grand daughter says!! she is a very cool 7th grade cheerleader!!!

Kirsten said...

This is going to look beautiful..I like the way the alternating blocks look. Great!!

Joan said...

Oh my gosh Joanne...I will have to get busy again ...tomorrow I think. Once I have sorted out the fabric!!

Anonymous said...

Enjoying watching your progress!!

Needled Mom said...

Oh yeah...glad to have this block. I have worked on my others so this will help pull them together.

Karen said...

Love this block, it's one of my favourites. What fun to watch your quilt grow. Good luck with your quilt-along!

Donna said...

I am in love with this quilt! Would you please share what line the darker beige fabric is from -- I need some of my own!

Scrappy quilter said...

Now I see how it's done. Thanks for e-mailing me the link. I'm off tomorrow to Killarney...need more material. I love the looks of this quilt. Hugs

Scrappy quilter said...

I have a home alone today so I've decided to work on these all day.

Scrappy quilter said...

Finished all 41 of these. Now 3 blocks left and I can start putting the blocks together.

Unknown said...

just found your quilt steps. what beautiful work and great to see the instructions and step by steps. I wish I had permission to use this in a church quilt circle. I can't wait to get started using some of these blocks in my own quilt. what a blessing you are to me. clydelady731

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