We’re back for the 4rd month of the 2018 Quilter’s Planner Block of the Month Sampler Sew Along!  If April showers do bring May flowers, then let’s take advantage of the rain this month and sew!

This month, we are working on Block 4 (page 30 in the 2018 Quilter’s Planner Magazine).  Block 4 is a classic churn dash block.  If you’d like to see an online tutorial for this block, which also appeared in the 2017 planner, click here to visit The Carpenter’s Daughter’s blog.  Shelly provided us with a great blog tutorial for the Churn Dash last year (using the same measurements).

If you’re wondering what fabrics we’ve used for this beautiful block: They are all Alison Glass for Andover:  Reef in Shrimp from Diving Board, Starfish in Mist from Diving Board, and Depths in Aquamarine from Sun Print 2018.

Tips for Sewing a Churn Dash Block

QP Insider Tip #1:Time Saver Alert!

Rather than cutting the 4 – 2½” x 4½” rectangles of Fabric B and the 4 of the 2½” x 4½” Background rectangles that you will need for step 2, try cutting 1 – 2½” x 18” strip from both fabrics, sew them right sides together along the long edge with our scant ¼” seam allowance, press the seam toward Fabric B, then   

Check out the photo below: the red circle highlights the 4 subcut rectangles that are 4 1/2″ x 4 1/2″ you will end up with.

QP Insider Tip #2: Don’t Inadvertently Flip Your Rectangles

Speaking of the 4½” x 4½” rectangles that are shown in the red circle above…When you lay out your pieces in preparation for sewing the rows, don’t inadvertently flip those rectangles! Make sure those Step 2 units (the one from the previous tip) are turned so that the side with Fabric B touching the center square.  

QP Insider Tip #3: Make Half Square Triangles The Easy Way

Step one of making a churn dash block is to make 4 half square triangles.

Did you know that the Reference section in your Quilter’s Planner also has information on how to make 8 Half Square Triangles at a time?

Or, if you want another time saver, check out Lee Heinrich’s awesome method for Perfect HSTs in Less Time! 

It’s my new favorite way to make multiple HSTs.

QP Insider Tip #4:

If you’ve chosen to follow the Modern Bliss layout, there is only 1 version of Block 4 in the quilt pictured on the cover of the magazine (the leftmost block on row 2).  Also, don’t forget that the Modern Bliss layout uses blocks set on point (rotated 45 degrees), so that may be something to consider when selecting fabrics

Guidelines to enter your sewn blocks into our monthly challenge (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 tag @thequiltersplanner and use the #QP2018sewalong hashtag) and/or to the Facebook Group (using the same #QP2018sewalong hashtag).  We will have prizes for both, but you are only eligible to win the monthly prize once.

Rules for for Entering your Sewn Blocks to Win Prizes Online:

When you post a photo of your block on Instagram or in our Facebook group by each deadline set for the month (usually the first of the next month),  you’ll be entered into a drawing for some great prizes from our sponsors: Andover Fabrics, Aurifil, OLFA, and the Quilter’s Planner.


Each month’s entry must be posted by 12:01 am Central Time to be eligible.


You MUST tag @thequiltersplanner on IG or post your block in our Facebook group with your entry and use the hashtag #QP2018sewalong (please be sure to use the hashtag on Instagram AND Facebook) so we can track your entry.


If you win one month’s prize, you will be eligible to win again at 6 months and 12 months, if you complete and enter each month’s block on time.


Some prizes may not be available for participants outside the US due to shipping costs.  Winners will be contacted via social media and asked to provide an email address and shipping address.


If a prize alternative is required, it will be sent via email.


If you do not receive your prize within one month, please contact us at [email protected] so we can contact prize sponsors and help coordinate a new shipment.


These contests are not affiliated with Instagram or Facebook in any way.


General Tips for Sewing the 2018 QP Block of the Month Pattern:


Fabric requirements are listed for the whole project on p. 26 of the pattern magazine.  They are also listed per block, if you do not plan to sew the entire sampler.


Along the way, we will provide you with tips and tricks on Instagram, in our Facebook group, and via email for success and to answer your questions as they arise.  


If you’re worried about missing Sew Along dates, we’ve got you covered – reminders will be posted on Instagram, on our Facebook page, and in our Facebook group as we move through the different phases of the Sew Along.


While these aren’t required, 3½” and 4½” square rulers may speed up the process of trimming and squaring your blocks.  If not, there’s no need to worry. Many quilting rulers have 45 degree lines printed on them. These handy lines are great for helping you to align your seams.


Happy Sewing!  Please contact us on Instagram or in our Facebook group and tag us if you get stuck or have questions!