Saturday, 4 March 2017

Block 1: NQC Quilt Block Challenge

As you know I had my fabric already picked out for the challenge, but still I struggled getting started on the first block.
My fabric choices for the NQC Quilt Block Challenge
Grey, yellow and navy blenders, with 'silver' Prima Homespun as background.
That inner voice saying "I can't do points and nested seams" kept stalling me. I was also spending a lot of time trawling through facebook posts looking at what others had done and questioning my fabric choices... basically I was procrastinating.

But how can I possibly finish something if I can't even bring myself to start it in the first place? So after much positive self talk I jumped in.

The instructions for this week say to cut 4.5 inch squares of colour A (the dark grey for me) and colour D (silver) and 5.25 inch squares of colours B (yellow), C (blue) and D (silver).

The 5.25 inch squares are used to make half square triangle blocks that are then trimmed down to 4.5 inches before joining to the other blocks.

I decided to cut all the fabrics, including colours  A and D, to 5.25 inches initially, make the required half square triangles and then trim all of the squares down to 4.5 inches before joining in the final pattern. I will use marginally more fabric across the entire quilt if I continue doing this, but I think I'd prefer that than having to ditch a whole pile because I've got my measurements mixed up and mis-cut a heap.

All fabrics cut to 5.25 inch squares
L-R = Colours A to D
Following the pattern I went ahead and made the half square triangles then trimmed every block, including the plain fabric ones.

I had picked up a 4.5 inch square ruler when I bought the fabric for this challenge. It really does make things so much easier. There's almost no chance of cutting the squares to anything other than 4.5 inches if you just trim to the size of the ruler.

Ready to trim the blocks to 4.5 inches square.

Once all the blocks were trimmed, it was time to lay them out according to the pattern and join the rows.

Block pieces laid out ready to join.
Once the rows were sewn together, the rows are joined to make a single block and its done.

Tada! Block 1 finished!


Block 1 turned out really well, but the making didn't fully go to plan - there were some definite 'oops' moments as I was putting it together.

Two Half Square Triangle blocks are made by laying two squares of contrasting colour right sides together, stitching 1/4 inch either side of the diagonal and then cutting between the two lines of stitching.

I'm supposed to cut along the centre line, not stitch it.
And I managed to stitch the centre line not once, but twice on this block (once from either end).
My seam ripper "Jack" got a little bit of a workout when I realised that I'd messed up the top row. Thankfully I noticed before joining all the rows into a single block so it was only a matter or ripping and resewing a single seam.
Still not sure I how I managed this!
I'm really pleased with how Block 1 turned out, even if there were a couple of little bloopers. The points aren't too far off, and I like how the colour combination comes together.

Looking forward to getting sewing on Block 2.


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