Welcome to August!
We’re getting closer to the home stretch, friends! Thanks for taking this journey with us. If you’re sewing along and want to enter to win prizes each month, post your finished blocks to Instagram or in our Facebook group (between August 15th and August 31st) with the #QP2019sewalong hashtag.
Each month, we post tips and tricks to help you with your blocks. To keep up with the Tips and Tricks, visit our 2019 Block of the Month Landing Page here. You might want to make it one of your Favorites on your computer so it’s easy to find. You can also find it on QuiltersPlanner.com under the Patterns and BOMs tab.
Which Block Should I Sew in August?
The block for August is Outer Ring Block 1. Instructions for this block are on page 20 of the QP magazine.
***Block Errata Notice***
It looks like there is a tiny error in the instructions for the 2019 August block in the magazine (page 20, Outer Block Ring 1).
There should be only (2) 3”x3” background squares required for this block, not 4 to make the HSTs.
Snowflake Layout: Make two.
Pyramid Layout: Make four. Yes, four!
Tips for making Outer Ring Block 1:
Tip #1: While cutting your pieces, you may be tempted to save time by stacking and cutting through several layers of fabric at once. Please use caution: too many layers of fabric and you will get some major shifting! If your pieces are inaccurate because of stack cutting, you will waste more time in the long run having to re-cut everything. We’ve found that four layers or less gives the best accuracy.
Tip #2: When sewing the small rectangles together and pressing, be sure to use an accurate seam allowance so the piece fits nicely with your other units when you go to assemble your block. Use a small ruler to check the seam allowance as you go.
Tip #3: When you press the rectangle units after sewing them together, be sure not to distort the unit. Again, we want it to be perfectly square so it fits nicely with the other units.
Tip #4: Many of us will want to take advantage of chain piecing this month. It’s a huge time-saver when piecing together multiples of the same block. We’re looking at you, pyramid layout folks!
If you’ve never chain-pieced before, here’s how:
Place your first two pieces to sew under your presser foot and sew your first unit as usual.
When you get to the end of the piece, do not take this unit off the machine, raise your presser foot, or cut your thread.
Simply grab your next two pieces and place them under your presser foot.
The feed dogs should pull them in after a few stitches, which means for just a short time your machine is sewing into nothing, creating an area of twisted thread between each unit. During these few stitches, be sure to slow down so your don’t end up with a tangled mess of thread!
When you are done sewing all your units, trim your thread and take your units off the machine.
Now your sewn units form a ‘chain’ with a small area of twisted thread connecting each of them. Separate your units by trimming each area of twisted thread right at the center. This will keep a twist or two intact and help the stitches at the end of your unit keep from unraveling.
You can press your units either before or after you separate your chain. If your do so after, be careful to not let those stitches unravel as you press.
If you haven’t tried this technique before, we encourage you to give it a go this month!
Guidelines to enter your sewn blocks into our monthly challenge (and win prizes on Instagram and Facebook)
- Between the 1st and the 7th day of each month, you’ll find the pattern for that month’s block and select your fabrics.
- Between the 8th and the 14th, you’ll get your fabrics prepped and cut.
- Between the 15th and the end of the month, sew up your block and post it to Instagram (please use the #qp2019sewalong hashtag) or to the Facebook group (using the same #qp2019sewalong hashtag).
As always, feel free to contact us on Instagram or on our Facebook group if you need any help or have questions about the block!