Saturday, March 5, 2011

Civil War Chronicles BOM March Tips: CREATE A TEMPLATE for a block with fewer seams!

I was thinking...which, if left with enough time, can actually bring about an idea worth trying.  Mind you, please proceed with caution because I haven't actually sewn up one of the March blocks yet using my newly created template (which I will show you how to create), but I'm going to use my new template, sew one of the blocks together and post it here asap for you to see with any "tweaking" that might be, I'm not a mathematical person....but....

Here was the thought that started it all:  Using flying geese created eight fewer seams in each of the four blocks from February.  When I looked at the March quilt block, my eye went immediately to the two long seams breaking up Fabric Four (striped, directional fabric).  My concern was two-fold; one, creating fewer unsightly seams (my personal opinion only, might not be yours and that's OK :-)  and two, ensuring that stripe stayed in the same direction, PLUS I wanted a MIRROR IMAGE.  So, if you want something, what do you do?  1)  whine about it  2)  take care of it before you whine!  Plus, I thought of the Harriet Hargrave class I attended last fall.  Nothing scares her off!  If she were here, I know she'd say, get to work!  So I did :-)

So, I chose 2) and got's the template I created:

(Yvette, please let me know what you think!)

Fabric Four from the March CWC BOM is to be cut to 8 7/8" squares, then cut into triangles

Do you see the seam lines in the tan triangles?  Those are the ones I'm avoiding by creating a template that runs the entire length, one piece of fabric, running with striped fabric N and S.

Sorry this is sideways, but I want to also mirror image Fabric Four (striped fabric) with the top two #3 blocks
and the bottom two #3 blocks.

So, to create my template, I used my Omnigrid see-through ruler and drew one square that ran 8 7/8" all the way around, then drew one more square running 8 7/8" all around right next to it, then cut off one of the triangles, since I only need three for my Fabric 4 template.

Freezer paper is curly on the edges, so I broke out the cardboard from cereal boxes I've been saving - (see!  there was a use for that!) - and I cut out the triangles and glued them down...

Here they all are waiting to dry.

Here they are dry and cut out, now to get rid of that extra 1/4" where originally seams would have been.

Explanations above.

Here's the top (and bottom) I named #1.

Here's the other top/bottom.

For the mirror images, I have re-named Block #3's to Top Left:  3A, Bottom Right:  3B
Bottom Left 3C, Top Right 3D
This way, North and South stripes will be facing each they did in battle.
(BTW, The story about Arabella Griffith Barlow was a heart-breaker!!!)

Here I have tiny corners to cut off my template.

and here (left)

good close-up of what needs to be clipped away

I'm not regretting my 20"x20" square ruler...especially with these larger blocks and now with a template...
my hubby helped me see that 1/4" still needed to be trimmed away from each of the ends to make it 16 1/2"

so he took a pic of me in trim-mode!

and Ta-Dah!  Here's my template...

Here's my fabric laid out for the first cut, which will be Block 3A and Block 3B to mirror image:

(stripe running N and S)

these will be cuts 3C and 3D

The template does have to be flipped over for it to work.

Celebrate National Quilting Day on March 19th, 2011
Here's a beautiful, free pattern to help celebrate:
Also, find out more about it at:

Whew!  I'll post more tomorrow!!  G'night and happy creating!

Let me know if you make and use the template - I'd love to see your finished block(s)!!!  Thanks!!!


  1. Okay... I'm impressed that this feat of mathematical prowess! It's gonna look GREAT!

  2. I'm giggling about your comment about "a feat of mathematical prowess" because I'm hopeless at math! I'll have to show this comment to my husband :-) Thanks for the kudos!!


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