Friday, January 20, 2012

Made in Cherry Quilt Along - sewing the central star


Yay, today we do some sewing!!  Let's start with that block of 100 squares that make up the center of the star.

Yesterday when I laid my quilt out I broke the center down into 4 blocks of 25 squares each.  I find it so much easier working in smaller sections like this, and not just because my sewing table is an Ikea tv tray!  It's just easier to keep track of 25 squares of fabric rather than 100!

Here's my first section.  I started sewing at the top of the pile and sewed the cream and red floral to the raindrop fabric (1).  Then I sewed the fabric with the pink cricket cage to the white and black print (2), sewing them all in a chain until I ended at (5).  Then I started back at the top again, sewing the fabric with the old fashioned lock onto the cream and red floral (1).  Chaining my pieces together like this means that I end up with a piece that looks like this:

Half the seams are sewn and everything is held together.  I don't have to worry about mixing up my rows!  Now I can press my seams.

I like to press my seams in opposite directions.  This way the seam allowances butt up together and make for really tight matches.

Here you can see how in alternating columns I've pressed the seams in opposite directions.  And, yeah, I made a few squares out of smaller pieces - I ran out of light print scraps large enough to cut 4½" squares.

Now you just need to sew all the columns together and press (these seams can all be pressed in the same direction).  Yay, one quadrant down, 3 to go!

Lather Sew, rinse press, repeat!

Our 4 quadrants are sewn, now we just need to join them together.

That was fast!  Ok, one more seam!

Woot!!!  And now I need a cup of tea...

That's better.  Ok, let's tackle those star points.

I found that for the star points it was easiest to lay the pieces out on the floor or table next to me.  Then I stitched them up just like the center quadrants, chain piecing everything together.  Again, I pressed my seams so they went in opposite directions to make butting them easier.

Then I stitched everything together and popped the label back on the point.  7 more to go!  Don't sew your star points to the center, just make sure you're still happy with their positioning and put them away until next week.

And that's it for this week!  Next week we'll be cutting our background fabric and piecing everything together.

happy stitching,

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  1. Lovely! Your piecing looks so nice and tidy, it's just beautiful.

    I'm almost finished piecing the top, but I'm afraid mine wouldn't stand up to close scrutiny, at least not during the piecing stage. It looks a lot better when viewed as a whole...from a distance...!

  2. it looks wonderful! and I love the scrappy parts, makes it look really fantastic! I'm super curious what your background fabric will be! Thanks for so many pictures and clear instructions! makes it so easy to follow for a visual learner like me!

  3. oh yeah gonna get started!. that's really exciting.

  4. Love the fabrics and colour of your star! I just finished my miniature version, such fun quilt to make.

  5. Oh I think I will be able to catch up by next weekend, maybe! I love your little mini-blocks!

  6. I can't wait to get started! Just made my fabric choices and will be cutting tomorrow...Yeah!!

  7. i am so so behind! i need to cut my fabrics! i love your fabric choices and i love how this is looking chelsea! i can't wait to start on mine!

  8. Hi, thank you so much for the inspiration to make this quilt! It is fun to do it together like this. Are you gonna do another of those link-thingies? (or did I miss you mentioning something about that?)
    anyway, thanks and keep up the good work. My middle square is almost finished!
    Bye, Merel (form the Netherlands)

    1. thanks for the reminder, Merel, I'll add the link now!

  9. My center and points are all sewn together! I can't wait to finish the top!

  10. I've sewn up my central square and have today finished my 8 points. Will hope to get the background fabric cut out tomorrow and begin to sew it all together. Really loving how its coming along. Thanks for the clear pics they're really useful x

  11. Question, is there a reason why you didn't just make another 5x5 square and cut it in half on the bias to make the star points? I hate cutting and sewing half squares so I'm just thinking of ways to save time but maybe there is a reason you didn't do this?

    1. Hi Mel,

      I thin I get what you're asking. Do you want to sew the squares that make up the star points like a set of stairs and then trim off the excess? You can do this, just make sure you include the seam allowance when you trim - don't trim point to point on the seams. I decided not to suggest this for a few reasons. First, this quilt along followed Sarah Fielke's pattern and she didn't suggest it. Second I dislike wasting fabric and know I wouldn't use the cut off bits. And third, it's quite hard to describe how to do it correctly and I'd hate to have people lose all their fabric and effort due to inaccurate trimming. If this method works for you, though, give it a go!