Sunday, 5 July 2015

Friendship Star Variation Tutorial

It's been very stitch quiet around these parts for the last number of weeks and I haven't had much to show you, but when I was doing some blog admin I did find this Friendship Star tutorial that I didn't get around to posting at the time I wrote it.  Thought I might share it with you now.

Making Di's birthday Friendship Star mini quilt reminded me how striking this simple little block can be, and I couldn't resist having a play for options in a larger quilt.  I just pulled some scraps and stitched this variation up.  I added little corner triangles with a view that if this was a scrappy quilt the colourful corners would add a little more interest when the blocks are repeated, and it would reduce the larger negative space created by the background fabric.

Thinking ahead,  I've decided that I might raid my scrap box over the course of the next year to make enough blocks for a quilt to contribute to Siblings Together 2016.  This year my contribution to Siblings Together was limited to some block contributions to the quilts donated by others but it would be nice to make one myself for such a good cause next year.  Don't expect to see speedy progress folks, but hopefully giving myself such a wide timeframe will help it become a reality for next summer's ST camps.

For my block I chose one bright print for the friendship star and two other prints for pairs of opposite corner triangles, as well as a solid white cotton as the background to my block.

Friendship Star Variation
12.5" sq unfinished

Fabric A (background)
Cut 2:  5" squares
Cut 4:  4.5" squares

Fabric B (print for star)
Cut 2:  5" squares
Cut 1:  4.5" square

Fabrics C & D (corner triangles)
Cut 2:  2.5" squares from each fabric

Use scant 0.25" seams throughout.

1.  First of all take both 5" white squares and all four 2.5" squares and draw a diagonal pencil line across the wrong side of the fabric.

2.  Make the HSTs for the star points:  Pair each 5" white square with a 5" square of fabric B and stitch a seam 0.25" on each side of the diagonal pencil line.  (You can just about see mine in the photo above.)

3.  Using your rotary cutter, cut along the pencil line to separate your HSTs.

4.  Press the HSTs with your seam allowance towards the print fabric.

5.  Now trim each HST to 4.5" square, taking care to line up the diagonal seam with the diagonal line on your ruler.  When all four are trimmed, set aside.

6.  Corner triangle units:  Pair each 4.5" white square right sides together with a 2.5" print square, making sure the diagonal pencil line you drew runs across the corner as shown in the photo above.

7.  Now stitch ALONG each pencil line to attach the print squares to the background.

8.  Trim away the outer corners 0.25" from your stitch line.

9.  Now open your corner and carefully press seam towards print fabric to regain a 4.5" square.

10.  Lay out all your 4.5" units in the correct order ready to sew together.

11.  Stitch the units into rows and then take the rows to your ironing board.

12.  Take the middle row first and press the seams towards the centre print fabric.  Then, press the top and bottom rows in the opposite direction.  This alternate pressing of seams will help you to nest your seams together nicely in the next step and will reduce some of the bulk at seams in your block.

13.  Placing rows 1 and 2 right sides together, butt the seams and pin in place to hold while you stitch the row together.  Repeat to join rows 2 and 3.

14.  Press the final two seams of the rows open to reduce the bulk in your block.

15.  Trim to 12.5" square and you're done!

Nice and easy!  I hope you find the tutorial useful, perhaps for your own quilt plans or Bee Blocks or maybe your own version of a Siblings Together 2016 quilt, who knows?!


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