March 5, 2015

City Girl Sew Along Block #6

Introducing Block #6 of our City Girl Sew Along - the Sidewalk - which reminds me of the sidewalks in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Yep, a trip down memory lane. Although you can see half square triangles, we ain't sewing triangles here! We will be using a small square ruler (or a plastic template, if you don't have the ruler handy).

This block is easy and quick to assemble. I do give some detailed explanations about what I do with seams if I have to force them to butt together, thus the tutorial became a little longer than the others. But, I hope it will be helpful to you.

Here is what you will need:
(1) 2-1/2" x 32" strip of medium gray fabric (both gray prints are Riley Blake Design's)
(1) 2-1/2" x 32" strip of small gray print fabric
(2) 2-1/2" x 32" strips of white fabric
2-1/2" square ruler, or
thick template plastic for the 2-1/2" square (to download template, click here)
Rotary Cutter
Thread (Aurifil 50wt is very thin so blocks turn out to exact measurements!)
Basic sewing supplies

With a 1/4" seam, stitch a white strip to each of the gray strips. Press with seam towards dark fabrics.

Align diagonal dashed line from 2-1/2" square ruler (or, if using a plastic template, trace template square onto plastic, cut it, then align its dashed line) with the seam of one of the two-color strips.

Using a rotary cutter, carefully trim around the ruler or template. If you have a rotating mat, you may cut one side, turn mat around and have next side at the right position for you to cut it, whether you are right or left handed. Otherwise, if necessary, just reposition the ruler or template if it moves as you get ready to cut the other sides. You will need 8 half-square triangles from each two-color strip. Press all seams towards the dark fabric.

Arrange pieces next to your sewing machine as shown on picture above.

Pin two HST with right sides together and stitch them with a 1/4" seam. You may consider beginning your sewing line on a small piece of scrap to ensure you will stitch a perfect 1/4" seam when you move onto your block, as shown above (Notice how I pined the HST, catching both seams. Do not worry - I did line up the edge of the block to the presser foot after I took this picture!).

Repeat with the other blocks then press them. I usually look at where the seams want to go and press them on that direction. Later on, when piecing them to other blocks, if I need to turn the seam to another side so it will butt with the seam from the other block, I do so, press it, then cut a "V" on the seam so each part of it can be pressed towards the direction it must go. Here is what I mean:
No, I do not believe making that "V" on the seam will weaken either the seam or the block. By proceeding this way there will be no bulk to quilt over (and risk breaking needles or having your needle totally avoid the bulk as you FMQ it, messing up your design). After blocks are joined and quilt top is quilted, the quilting lines ensure nothing comes apart (provided when you cut  your "V" you were careful to stop a few threads from the sewing line).

Stitch the squares together, then join top row, then bottom row, then stitch rows together to form the block.

Choosing a dark and a light print as I did helped portray the sidewalks exactly as I remembered them. Can you relate? I will turn this block onto its own quilt someday...

Next Thursday's block (wait, maybe I should have called this the Thursday Sew Along instead of the City Girl Sew Along, as I have been publishing a block every Thursday!) will probably be appliqued.

Looking forward to seeing your blocks!

1 comment:

  1. I just made this exact quilt but in Yellow and Dark grays for a baby quilt.
    Love the fabrics you have chosen :-D


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