Welcome to the Block 2019 Creative Challenge! We’re exploring different classic quilt blocks all year long. We’ve met February’s block, Ohio Star, and its variations. This week we’re ready to quilt our block!
For each block of the Block 2019 Creative Challenge, we’ll give you ideas for quilting it as you go, so at the end of the year you’ll have a sampler ready to go together, already quilted. If you don’t want to quilt as you go, you can still join in the fun by compiling a selection of quilt designs to use.
But before the quilting ideas, let’s talk about how to prep your block for quilting as you go.
Begin by measuring your block. The challenge blocks are all 12 1/2″ unfinished. Cut your backing the same size as your block. The gray 12 1/2″ square in the block cutting instructions is the backing for the quilt as you go block.
Cut a square of batting the finished size of the block. In this case, that’s 12″ square.
Mark your quilting design on the block. On quick projects like quilt as you go blocks, I love the classic Disappearing Ink Marking Pen.
Now that we have all the ingredients, we’re ready to make the quilt sandwich.
Making a Quilt Sandwich
Lay the backing square down on a flat surface, wrong side up. Lay the batting square in the center of the backing. Lay the block on top of the batting, even to the edges of the backing square. Baste with spray, pins, large stitches, or any other method you prefer.
We’ll cover how to put together quilt as you go blocks another time, but for now just make sure your quilting doesn’t go into the seam allowance on your quilt as you go block.
As you select or create a quilting design, it’s important to keep your machine in mind. Straight lines and gentle curves lend themselves to a walking foot.
Quilting designs with dramatic curves and fluid lines lend themselves to freemotion quilting. If your machine can drop its feed dogs and you have a hopping foot, you can freemotion quilt on your home machine, and these blocks are a great chance to practice! Here’s a video on setting up your home machine for freemotion quilting.
And of course, hand quilting goes great with quilt as you go. Traditional hand quilting brings elegance to every design, and more modern big stitching brings a lot of fun and playfulness to blocks.
Big stitch quilting by Sarah Fielke
Factor these options into your creative choices for quilting your block. Now that we’ve covered the basics, let’s take a look at some quilting ideas for Ohio Star.
This design is as traditional as they come. Quilt a quarter inch around the inside of each unit in the block to create this design. It’s a great design for a walking foot or hand quilting.
Inspired by sound waves, this design can be done with a walking foot, but may be easier with freemotion quilting or hand quilting.
Loops are a fun way to loosen up your movements while quilting. The curvy lines of this design are easiest to create with freemotion quilting.