Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Simply Solids: August tutorial

Next month (August) is my month in the Simply Solids Bee!  I've debated for most of the year as to what I'm going to ask for, but finally chose one.
(This is really only half of the block.)
First of all, various credits...I saw the original inspiration on You Know What I Love?  (You can see the final quilt here.)  She in turn was inspired by the Tumbling Blocks Pillow.

Colors: I'm asking for scrappy blocks.  However, if you could make the strips green I'd prefer that.  If you don't have enough green please use grey (or black or white).  If you don't have enough of any of those colors let me know.  Feel free to make the small colored strips any color you would like.

Final product: I'd like you to send 2x 6 1/2" x 12 1/2" blocks...basically just don't sew the final seam to make it the 12 1/2" square.  I could say that it is because I don't know exactly what layout I want yet, but really it is because I want to be able to move the half blocks around to evenly distribute the colors.

Ok, let's get on with the tutorial.

Step 1: Cut out your green strips.  The strips should be 7" long and 1.75" to 3" wide.  I can't tell you how many you'll need since it will depend on your strip width, but probably 6 to 12 per half block, so 12 to 24 total.  (Note: if you have two strips of the same color but individually they're too short they will still work if they add up to about 8".)

Step 2: Cut your pieces in two.  Make sure to do some angling top to bottom and some bottom to top.  Vary the angle so some are steeper and some are shallower.  Change where you start the cut, although make sure it is at least an inch from the top or bottom.  (Note: if you have the two pieces are mentioned above, overlap them by .5" - 1" and cut so that the cut is only in the overlap part. Discard the two tiny pieces.)

Step 3: Add the color section.  Please made the width about 1.5" and make sure to give yourself some extra on the sides.  Sew the colored strip between the two green pieces.  The first side is easy, but the second side includes a little guess work because you want to try and line up the two strips as much as possible so that it comes out straight.  It will probably not turn out perfectly straight (see step 4).

Step 4: Trim the strip so that it is straight.  As a rule of thumb, if the strip is going to be much less than 1.5" you might want to try and resew the second green piece.

Step 5: Arrange the strips and sew together.  I'd prefer that you try to put all of the colored strips in the top half or center area (see paint diagram below).  Mine ended up a little more center than top, but I still tried to keep all of them somewhat clustered on the lower part of the top half.

Step 6: Trim to 6 1/2" x 12 1/2".  Here are the two that I ended up with...

Questions?  Comments?  Let me know.  I'm excited to see how these turn out!


  1. This is going to be FUN! And I am a very green girl so you will have plenty of greens in this one. I can't wait to get started.

  2. What a great tutorial... your instructions are very clear. Looking forward to this!

  3. these look so fun! How are you planning to set them? Just sew them together, or will you sash them at all? They remind me a little of flowers growing, a la all those pics one always sees of the tulip fields in Holland.


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