QUILT AS YOU GO...for Ms. Jean
This tutorial was written after my Mini Quilt Group decided to make this Quilt as You Go in honor of our Quilty Friend who passed away recently...Ms. Jean.  This was one of her favorite travel projects...so grab a Cup of Joe and learn how to make a Ms. Jean Quilt Project of your very own!
First...I chose my fabrics!  Depending on how large you want your Quilt as you Go Project to be will determine how much fabric you will need.  I happened to have this fabric line called Sentimental Journey by Robin Pandolf for SSI Fabrics. You can even go completely SCRAPPY...so pull out that huge bin of leftovers scraps you have hidden in the back of the Studio Closet and get cutting!
Cut your fabrics into 3 1/2" wide strips and then subcut each of those strips into 3 1/2" squares.  I did this with ALL of my fabrics from the line I showed.  My plan is to make a 15 X 19 block set...so I will be making a total of 285 blocks and each block will finish at 4 1/4" square.  My Large Lap Size Quilt should be approximately 64" X 86"...give or take.  Check back on my progress as I work on My Ms. Jean Quilt Project...she may turn into a placemat...LOL!
Now choose your Background Fabric...mine is White Kona Cotton by Robert Kaufman.  I LOVE this solid fabric!  Cut your Background Fabric the same way as your colored fabrics...3 1/2" wide strips and then subcut the strips into 3 1/2" squares.
Be sure to compulsively organize and stack your 3 1/2' squares in color coordinating piles...like I do!  Ok...you really don't HAVE to do this step...I'll forgive you if you don't!  Gotta keep it REAL here!
Making a Four Patch is Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy...layout your two color fabric squares with your two background fabric squares in this fashion.  Set up your sewing machine with cotton thread and set it to sew an accurate 1/4" seam allowance.
Here I have joined the top two pieces together...with an accurate 1/4" seam allowance and then press to set the seam and then press the seams toward the colored fabric.  Next you will join the two sections together...and because you have pressed the seams towards the colored fabric...the seams will nestle together easily with "opposing" seams.
Lookey how pretty your little Four Patch is...now wasn't that Easy?
Now take the bottom of your Four Patch and match it right sides together to the top half of your four patch and sew down each side with an accurate 1/4" seam allowance.  Click on the picture to enlarge it so you can see that I sewed both sides...from top to bottom.  DO NOT SEW ACROSS THE TOP!
This is how your little unit appears as you look down the top...that I just told you NOT to sew across!  Now...join the the opposing seams you see (the seam on the top and the seam on the bottom...at the palm of my hand).  Match the opposing seams and pin.
I pinned it all the way across the top.
You will need to leave a small opening where you are sewing across the top...for turning the right sides out.  I back tacked it at this section...for strength.  When you turn it right sides out those areas will become high stress points.  Be sure to click on the picture to enlarge it enough to see the detail of this section that my seam ripper is pointing to.
Be sure to clip ALL four corners!  I know...it's those THUMBS...again!
Turn your Hour Glass shape block right sides out through the "hole" you left open when you sewed across the top.  Be sure to push out the four corners so they are squared off nice...use something that has a rounded point...so you do NOT make a hole in your fabric.  Press it well on both sides.
Measure your Hour Glass Block...it will be around 4 1/4" square.  Cut your batting piece (I used leftover scraps of my Warm and White 100% cotton batting...as it is flatter and works really well for this project) slightly SMALLER than your Hour Glass Block...about 1/8" smaller.
Fold your batting in half to help get it through the hole and then smooth it out flat inside the block.  I have done this in many different ways...using a safety pin to hold it in place while I smoothed it out (Thank You Fannie!).  Simply try a few things to see which procedure works best for you.  You just want to make sure that it is laying flat inside the block and that it fills out the block into the corners.
See how pretty it looks...the batting is inside there!  Now you need to hand sew the hole shut!  Use a blind stitch so you don't see too much of the "threads".
Quilt the white triangle sections of your Hour Glass Block...any fashion your little heart desires.  I used my Walking Foot Even Feed System on my Ruby Jane to quilt it with White thread in a continuous sew sequence.  I started on the outside corner and continued in the triangle shape until I reached the center.  LOVE!  I only quilted in the white (Background Fabric) sections...but you can do what suits you best.  With your blocks quilted as you go...they are as pretty on the front as they are on the back.
Start laying out your blocks in the order you would like the blocks to come together.  I decide that I wanted the Hour Glass Shapes to butt up against each other in an opposite fashion...by having the background part of the block side by side with the color part of the next block...as in this picture.  However...once again, you can do whatever you like.
I joined the blocks together using a "ladder stitch" by hand...instead of the "whip stitch".  It was my personal preference, simply because I liked the way the ladder stitch allowed my blocks to lay "FLAT" when they were joined together and not have that "bumpy" edge you get when you join them using a small whip stitch.  This is up to you...do whatever method you like best, so you can achieve the look you want.  The Quilt Police will NOT visit your studio...I promise!

See how nice and FLAT your blocks lay on the cutting mat?  Now join as may blocks you desire to make the width you want in your quilt...or heck you can make table mats, placemats, table runners or a wallhanging if you so desire.  And then when you have rows made...you join the rows together in the same manner you chose for joining your blocks together into rows.  I plan to "bind" my lap size quilt when I am finished...but I have been told that it is not necessary!  However the OCD in me says to bind it!

I will blog and photograph my progress on my Ms.Jean Project as I go...so stay tuned and check back soon!



avatar Paula Crook
I really like this block. Thanks for the directions, and of course, the photos. I'm going to try this one.
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Last Updated on Tuesday, 08 April 2014 08:56