Thursday, July 1, 2010

July block instructions

You guys are going to laugh at me... this is seriously WAAAAY too much instruction for my blocks. I'm sure all you need to know is "half log cabin - fabric is in the mail" but I started writing and then I couldn't stop and now I guess I might as well post it. So here we go:

Block size: 12” x 12” finished – 12.5” x 12.5” raw. Please leave the blocks untrimmed, I will do that when I have them all.

Fabric: You will get 16 strips, enough to make 2 blocks. There is not a much extra fabric, so be conservative with it. Please try to spread the fabrics more or less evenly, rather than creating a “pink” block or a “green” block.

Seams: Please press all seams open.

Block instructions:
  • The layout of the half log cabin block is shown below. When you look at the finished block, strips 8 and 7b, for example, will appear to be one “layer,” but for our purposes while constructing we are going to treat 7a and 7b as one layer, since the pieces are the same size. The strips that I sent are perfect length so that a pair of pieces can be cut from each one. If the first piece cut is size 1, the remainder of that strip will be size 7. If size 2 is cut, the remaining piece will be size 6. Size 3 goes with 5, two of size 4 can be cut from one piece. Size 8 is an uncut strip. Some of the packages have one or two strips that are shorter than the others.  If you have a short strip, it needs to be used in position 8.

  • It’ll be easiest to make both blocks at the same time and you will have the most flexibility in choosing colors.
  • Select your starting strips and cut a square each from the ends. The strips are not equal widths, so you will have to check the width to make sure your first pieces are square. I think it improves the look of the block if you chose thickish pieces as your starting point.
  • Select two more strips and sew a square onto the end of each. You can trim before or after you sew it on, but don’t cut the piece too big or you will run out of fabric later. Set the cut off piece of the strip aside along with the remainder of the first strip.
  • Press the seam allowances open and trim before adding each new strip. You don’t need to trim to a specific measurement because I would like the strips to be variable thickness but NOT wonky. Use the sewn edge of the initial square as a guide when cutting the edge square.
  • Continue this way until you have used all but two strips. These will be the level 8 strips. Switch to using the leftover ends, starting with the smallest ones.
  • I know this is going to be very tight as far as fabric, so if anything goes wrong, don’t fret! Just use the next size up strip, and then send the block back without the final layer. I can add that when it gets to me. I will confess that this happened on my practice block. I cut the strips for your guys a little bit longer because of that, but I didn’t do another test of them. We’ll see how it goes! 
In case you are wondering, the quilt is going to be for my cute little niece.

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