DIY Block of the Month for October – Maple Leaf a la Beth

BEFORE I EVEN POST A PHOTO OF THE BLOCK PLEASE NOTE:  THERE WAS AN ERROR IN HOW I HAD THE BLOCK LAID OUT .     I’ll address the errors in the directions but when you  lay out your block, please make it so it looks like this and not like the photo!  (I seriously considered re-making the block to correct the photos for about a minute but figured my friends already know I make mistakes!)

 

The finished and corrected block

 

So, on to cutting.  I decided on a scrappy layout for this block hoping I could work in the one fabric that has eluded being included so far but no luck.  Look for it in next month’s block.  The block is a 16-patch and in a twelve-inch block that means you are looking at units that cut 3.5″.  Now, if you wanted to use all one color, you could convert your squares into rectangles and make more of a log cabin effect but I digress.  Considering the problem I had with this simple version, I’d better stick to the basics today.

From the background (my yellow) cut three  3.5″ squares and one 4.5″ square.  I think I could have cut the big square a little smaller but it was the first time I’d tried this trick and wasn’t sure…better too big and cutting down than trying to add on.

Also cut two 3 7/8″  squares cut once on the diagonal to yield four triangles. (Or, if you are using an Easy Angle ruler or similar ruler, cut four triangles from your 3.5″ strip.)

 

From the contrast color(s) cut eight 3.5″ squares

Also cut two 3 7/8″ squares and cut them once on the diagonal to yield four triangles.

From your stem color, cut one strip 1″x 6″

Pieces cut and ready to roll!

 

First, sew  four background triangles to your color triangles to make 1/2-square units.

Chain piece them, press to the dark side and clip the dog ears!

 

This done, I placed all my pieces out to preview my block. 

 

The next piece to make  is the stem block.  Take the 4.5″ square and cut it once on the diagonal.  Finger press a line into the middle of both the triangle and the long strip.  Then, sew one triangle to either side of the strip, matching the creases.

Cut square down the middle and match finger creases

 

After sewing the three together
 
Next, we have to trim this square down to 3.5″ inches.  I’ll admit, I almost botched this one.  I should have started with my trusty Omnigrid square ruler right away.  I was trying to be mathematical and tricky and use my forty-five degree line but I nearly cut off too much!

The square ruler to the rescue!

 

Notice that the top triangles are now pointing the wrong way?

 
This is weird, now my align left key isn’t working so bear with me as I use right align on the rest of this post (or until the alignment key comes back to life.)
After you have all sixteen of your units ready to go, the sewing is simple.  Just fold column two onto column one and pick up all four pairs in the order they will be sewn. (First pair should stay on top.)  Chain piece these through the sewing machine, being careful not to break the threads between the squares.
 
 

Folding column two onto column one to sew.

 
Once you’ve sewn all of column two onto column one, open out the sewn pair and add the first block from column three (still no left alignment…hmmmmmmmm)

Adding column three to column two (complete with error remember your triangles shouldn't look like this!)

 

After you’ve sewn all four columns, press the rows of blocks in alternating directions top row to the right, next left, then right, then left.    After pressing, sew the rows together and, voila, there is your completed block.  Give it a good press and then thank my friend Donna for her lovely choice for October!

Completed block (after repairing my error - I love my seam ripper!)

 

Oh, look, left align is back!  So, I promised last time that I’d tell about my new challenge but you’ll just have to wait.  After nursing four cats through an upper respitory infection, I’ve fallen prey to the Fall Cold and am bonding quite nicely with my asthma inhaler and cold meds and more cold meds!  Look for a post early next week about my new challenge.  In the meantime, I’m up for some soup, some tea, a hot bath and an early bedtime!

Happy quilting!

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