I like doing quilty things with my buddies, and recently joined a block of the month with two friends. I joined up without knowing what the color choices were, or what kind of blocks would be done. It is a 30 minute drive away, so we get to have lots of chat time in the carpool. I couldn’t make the first two meetings of the year, so I bought the first three block kits. The choices, for my taste, were between awful and more awful, but the time with friends is more important than a fabric choice. The quilt can always be used by one of the many charities locally.
So, neon brights or batiks? Since I have never worked with batiks, I chose that route to experience something new. In general, the reason I don’t care for batiks are the prints. This was no exception with the oranges. I am more of a Thimbleberries kind of gal (so sad that Lynette Jenson has stopped designing under that name, but will watch RJR to see what happens). So, maybe it is time to see what all the hubbub is about. Here are the fabrics in the first three kits. I’ll make the March kit up today, and we will catch up the other two later. The blocks for the year will probably all be from Quilt Blocks Galore, so you can quilt along if you like. I’ll gather the block posts together under a Block of the Month Category so we can find them again.
So, March’s block is Annie’s Choice, click here for the pattern. It is all half square triangles. I cut 4 inch squares instead of the 3 7/8 called for so I can cut them square later. So, cut your squares, then mark your diagonal lines.
Sew 1/4 inch away from your line on both sides, chain piecing to save time.
Cut on the diagonal lines, and press toward the darker.
Square them up to 3-1/2 inch squares, placing the diagonal line on your sewing line and trimming away the excess.
Lay out the design on your sewing table checking it against the block pattern.
Take the squares in row 2 and align them on top of row one so your seam line is on the right. Do the same with row 4 on row 3.
Sew all of the couplets. No need to press yet.
Lay them out again, and align the seams again for the center seam. Chain sew.
Lay them out again on your ironing board so you can press the seams opposite to each other for nesting.
Lay them out one final time so you don’t get any of them upside down (ask me how I know this is important, LOL!!)
Sew the final seams and press.
So, my first block with batiks, and I am not impressed. The tighter weave is more difficult to work with, and if you get a crease in one, it is very difficult to iron out. I pressed the block several times and these puckers are still there. Will see what happens when the quilt is complete and quilted.
Will catch up the January and February blocks in a week or so, then will post the Block of the Month once a month as I get to the kit.
Hope you’ll quilt along with me, you can use whatever fabrics you like!