This weekend I shared a special tip video on how to prepare your fabric and cut it accurately. If you've been debating whether to use scraps or buy yardage, definitely check out this post for extra fabric cutting tips.
Today we're jumping right in with piecing our first block - Half Square Sun. This block is created almost entirely with half square triangles so you're definitely going to get a lot of practice piecing and cutting precisely.
Learn how to piece the block in this video:
Click Here to find the pattern for Block #1.
When working with half square triangles, I have added extra fabric to the squares so you can cut the shape down accurately after the triangle unit has been pieced.
To trim the half square triangles properly first make sure to align the 45 degree diagonal line on your ruler with the diagonal seam on the block. Rather than trim a large bit from two sides, instead trim a small amount from ALL sides of the block so you're sure that all the edges are straight and square with the diagonal line.
Arrange and Piece Carefully
I got a bit turned around while piecing Half Square Sun so make sure to lay out all the pieces on your table, then piece the units together carefully into rows, then the rows into your center block.
As I mentioned in the video, it's a great idea to develop a system of pinning so you always know which edge you need to stitch next. I can't count the number of times I held two pieces together and in the time it took to walk from the cutting table to the machine I'd forgotten which edge I was supposed to stitch!
Yes, we're pressing our seam allowances open for this quilt along because it will make the block flatter and easier to machine quilt. Trust me, you don't want to hit a layer of 6 seam allowances with your needle!
Many quilters have expressed concern that this could weaken their quilt because batting could poke through the seams, or the seams could be damaged when we stitch in the ditch later.
I've never seen an issue in my quilts created by pressing the seams open because I lower my stitch length for piecing. Lower your stitch length to 1.5 mm so the stitches are tiny, tight, and extremely secure.
I also think your piecing thread plays a roll too. I used Aurifil 50 wt. mako cotton to piece my blocks because it's super thin, very strong, and has virtually no lint.
Block Party Facebook Group! Post any questions you have about the piecing process either to the group or in the comments below.
Up Next - Tomorrow I'm planning to share another extra tip video on how to mark your block with the quilting diagram so it's ready for machine quilting. Click Here to watch all the videos posted so far about this project.
Let's go quilt,