Saturday, January 6, 2018

Squared Away Block 1

Hi everyone, and welcome to the first block of the Squared Away quilt!  This is going to be a fun project for this year.  This quilt was designed by me and Angela of soscrappy for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge this year, but anyone can feel free to join in.  If you haven't read the introductions to this project yet, that post is HERE.  There is also a tab at the top of this page with more information, and Angela also has a lot of helpful information on the sampler HERE and the Rainbow Scrap Challenge HERE

Red Cross

This month's block is called Red Cross, a Clara Stone block that dates to 1906, but we're not making it in red.  Our colors for this month are white and light neutrals and light blue.  For this block, you will need some light blue scraps, some scraps of background fabric, and a small bit of accent fabric.  Your accent can be any color that you like with the light blue, and you only need the equivalent of 5 2-1/2 inch squares of it.  Go monochrome or contrasting--it's up to you!  I used solid-ish fabrics for the main fabrics and prints for the accents. If you are using a dark color as your background, I suggest using the white or light neutrals for a spectacular block.  (Pictures of both colorways are below.)

**Note that there are alternate methods for some parts of the block, so please read all the way through before you start sewing.**

Let's get started!

Cutting for 10-inch blocks:

From the light blue, cut:

2 5-3/4 inch squares

From the background, cut

2 5-3/4 inch squares
1 strip 2-1/2 by 10-1/2

From the accent color, cut:

1 2-1/2 inch square
1 strip 2-1/2 by 10-1/2


First, use the 2 5-3/4 inch squares of the blue and the background to make 16 half-square triangles using the 8-at-a-time method (Magic 8).  You can oversize these squares a bit and trim the resulting hsts to the correct size if that works better for you. Your hsts should measure 2-1/2 inches square to finish at 2 inches in the block.

Arrange your hsts as shown and stitch:

Make 4 of these units. These should measure 4-1/2 inches square.

***Alternate methods: Don't have 5-3/4 inch scraps?  Make 2 at-a-time hsts from 2-7/8 inch squares (or oversize the squares and trim them down).  Make 16 and stitch together as shown above.

Want to use your already-cut 2-1/2 inch squares?  Layer a blue square and a background square, and draw a line from corner to corner on the back.  Stitch right on that line, then trim 1/4 inch away.  Press open for a perfect hst.  (I call these "cheater hsts.")  Make 16 and stitch together as shown above

For our next step, take the 2-1/2 by 10-1/2 inch strips of the accent and the background fabric and stitch them together along the long edge.  Press to the darker fabric.  Cut the strip set you just made into 4 units that are 2-1/2 inches each (there will be a little bit extra for squaring up the end if you need it).

***Alternate method:  If you want to use some 2-1/2 inch squares, you will need 5 of the accent color and 4 of the background. Stitch 4 of the accent squares to the background squares, saving one accent square for the center. ***


Lay out the units you just made as shown, including the 2-1/2 inch accent square, paying attention to the directions of the hsts in the corners:

Stitch the units into rows and the rows into a finished block.

Press well, stand back, and admire!

Congratulations, that's the first block!  If you are making the whole quilt this year, make a total of three blocks this month.  Here are all of the blocks I made this month:

This year, I am making three of the 10-inch blocks each month for a 30-block quilt, plus 2 15-inch blocks, some with dark backgrounds.  These blocks will give me enough for two big-block quilts, one with 12 blocks and one with 9 blocks.  (To make a 15-inch block, see the tab for the Squared Away quilt at the top of this page and also the tab on Angela's page.)

That's a good start to our quilt!  Jump on over to Angela's to see her blocks, some terrific tips, some variations, and other fun extras.  Angela also made us a great button:

How cool is that? You can grab this button at her blog too.

Our next block will be posted on Saturday, February 3.  Meet right back here!

Sharing at soscrappy for RSC18!


Jo said...

Fantastic start to the year...

scraphappy said...

Handy PDF if ready to go

Quilter Kathy said...

Very fun block to start! I have some HSTs all ready to go!
Hope to get in the sewing room later today to get to work!
THanks for the fun project!

JanineMarie said...

So pretty! It makes me think of a frosty morning. And to think you’ll have three quilts when you’re done with this project. Another tearful of quilty goodness from you!

Deb @ Frugal Little Bungalow said...

Very pretty block :)

The Joyful Quilter said...

Thanks for taking the time to draw up a quilt for us and creating the tutorial to go along with it, Mari. Squared Away is off to a great start!! I'll be looking forward to seeing what comes next.

Chopin - A Passionate Quilter said...

Having problems grabbing the button from So Scrappy - do you have the text available to grab your button? Thx

Edith said...

So pretty, I'm in and hope to post my first blocks next Saturday. Thanks for a great idea and instructions.

LIttle Penguin Quilts said...

This is really a pretty block, Mari! I'm excited to get into my sewing room this afternoon and get started on it. Thanks for a great tutorial!

Angie said...

Sounds like a great plan for the coming year. I look forward to seeing your sampler blocks each month!

Frédérique - Quilting Patchwork Appliqué said...

Beautiful block, and lovely scraps!

Deb A said...

I think this is the project for the day for me! Off to make my 3 blocks in light blue! Thanks for the tutorial.

Kate said...

Nothing to show yet, but I got started. Thank you for the tutorial and for designing the sampler for this year. It's exactly what I needed.

Linda said...

Thank you for making the PDF, as I am saving these blocks to sew at another time. Will you make a PDF for each block (or tell me how to do it)? It is much easier to save that way! ljb is me at msn dot com

Mari said...

Hi Linda, Angela plans to make a pdf for each block. You can find them all at her blog here: