Monday, March 06, 2017

Quilter's Recipe Box - Unit Three, Four Patch

Welcome to the third Block Unit for Quilter's Recipe Box!

(If you are new to this - you can find the First Unit here and the Second Unit here - catching up won't take long and I'd love for you to join us!)

This month we'll be working on the Four Patch unit.  A four patch is simply a square made from four smaller squares.  The block I chose to show this unit it Road to California, which is a Jacob's Ladder Variation.  As I am using traditional blocks, you may find many variations to both these names - if you are interested it is kind of fun to see what comes up in a google search, but let's get on to making our block.



For this block you will need four half square triangles cut from your background and colored fabric, plus a 2 inch x 22 inch strip from your background and a second color.

Sew your half square triangle units together in the normal way.  Then sew the two strips together, making sure to keep an accurate 1/4 each seam.  Press toward your dark fabric, and measure your strip to see if it measures 3 1/2 inches.


Well, mine came up just a hair short!  Looks like I'd better be a little more careful when sewing those strips, just a thread or two can make a huge difference in how your blocks set together when you are sewing many blocks!  Truthfully, I did not re-sew this strip because I know I can make it work for this one block, but if you are doing a whole quilt, it would definitely be worth while to adjust my seam allowance to make sure my blocks are accurate.  Or if you plan on sending blocks for a swap or quilt block of the month lottery!

Onwards!  Or Allons y, as the Doctor would say :)

At this point, you can just cut the whole strip into 2 inch sections and sew into four patches.  Or you can be super sneaky and do it this quick way!  Carefully cut your strip in half.  Lay one right side up, and turn the the other one right side down, making sure you have your colors alternating.  Make sure you straighten the edge and cut five 2 inch strips through both layers.  At this point, you can just take them to the sewing machine and stitch them together since they are layered and lined up ready to go!  I love sewing four patches like this because it goes so quickly!  Here's a little video showing how easy it is to cut the strips this way - I had already cut two of the strips, so am just showing the last four here:


After you finish sewing all of your four patch strips together, lay them out like so:


And sew your block together:

As usual, I like to press the seams away from the triangles when I can - here is what the back looks like:
I was admiring my block on the cutting table and I suddenly noticed how nicely it went with my cutting tools!  It made me smile so I had to include them in a picture as well.

Hope you enjoy this block! Here is a sample layout of how it looks in a quilt by itself:


Make sure you come back every Monday for a new variation on the unit for the month!  You can download this month's Recipe card instruction sheet here.  Thanks for playing along with me!

 Instruction Download

Download Recipe Card

Here are all four blocks from last month.  I am loving how bright and cheery the Dotalicious fabrics from Island Batik are!


I hope you are enjoying our journey - I would love it if you send me some pictures of your blocks!  Let me know if it's ok to share, and send to me at pamelaquilts@gmail.com.

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