I adore red, so it seemed like a great time to get some red fabrics out and have fun with my Farmer’s Wife block. I loved how quickly this block came together and how playful you can get with those odd angled shapes. I love the impact that this block provides by just changing the placement of the fabrics and their values. I think this block will provide a little bit of light relief before we get into some more of the trickier blocks. A rose amongst the thorns if you will…
Thoughts on the Letter
This letter has come at just the right time for me. I’ve always had what I would call an easy life. If I wanted something I just put my mind to it and made it happen. The one exception to that being conceiving our Son. But even then I feel like I just put my head down, did what needed to be done and we made it through. Our family has some big goals at the moment and with those big goals comes a lot of hard work to achieve them. 99% of the time I’m happy to sacrifice to achieve those goals. The last 6 months in particular have seen us become very insular as we’ve worked together to get where we are, but the next 6 months are going to require so much more of us as a family. There’s going to be hard choices to make and for the very first time in my life I feel like I’m in a position where I’m going to have to go without a lot of the things that I want to get where I’d like to go. I don’t do sacrifice easily and I know that there’s going to be tears along the way but when I read this letter it gives me hope that at the end of it we’ll be able to look back and say those sacrifices were worth it. I will be keeping the line, “Sometimes the way was so thorny we needed ironclad shoes, then again there were roses.”
Tutorial: Block #49 “Katherine”
- I pressed my seams open.
- I used a Schmetz 70/10 needle.
- I used 50wt Aurifil #2600 (Dove) thread for piecing.
- I used the From Marti Michell Patchwork Templates Set A.
- I used Flatter by Soak in Yuzu 248ml as my starch.
- Fabrics shown in the tutorial are from the Gnome Angel Farmer’s Wife 1930’s Bundle from Fat Quarter Shop.
Measurements for the pieces needed to construct this block will not be provided in this tutorial. It is a pre-requiste of making this block that you have a copy of the book, The Farmer’s Wife 1930s Sampler Quilt: Inspiring Letters from Farm Women of the Great Depression and 99 Quilt Blocks That Honor Them. Measurements can be found in this book and it’s associated media.
On Point Blocks
Please note I am not doing my blocks on-point. If you are fussy cutting your blocks please be mindful of your fabric placement so that the motif will sit correctly if you decide to put your blocks on-point.
You can find the From Marti Michell Patchwork Template Conversion Charts by clicking here.
Helpful Links & Videos
Marti Michell shows you how to cut using your ruler and templates:
How to Make the Block
- Tolerance Levels: you need to decide what is an acceptable tolerance level for “mistakes”. For example if your blocks are consistently 6¼” instead of 6.5″ are you ok with this. Or if your seams matching are less than an eight of an inch “off” are you ok with this. There’s no hard or fast rule and it’s different for everyone, so remember it’s your quilt so make your decision for you.
- Press your seams at each step. Click here for a great article on how to press your seams for patchwork.
- You can iron and starch your fabric prior to cutting. I also starch when pressing bulky seams.
- When pinning, pin away from you so that you don’t move your pieces when pinning.
- Where possible I chain piece all the pieces I can in one step. If you’re unsure of what chain piecing is, click here for a tutorial on how to do it. However, for the purpose of the tutorials I will step you through all the seams individually.
Please note: This tutorial shows how to use the From Marti Michell Patchwork Templates Set A to cut out the block pieces 49A. If you are not using the Mart Michell templates you will find the template for cutting this shape in the information included with your book.
1. Cutting 49A with the From Marti Michell Patchwork Templates Set A: Choose the 2 fabrics you wish to use for piece 49A. For the fabric that you’re using to correspond with the light pink pieces in the block image (on page 208 of your book) you will need to cut 3 – 2″ x 6″ strips of this fabric. For the fabric that you’re using to correspond with the orange pieces in the block image (on page 208 of your book) you will need to cut 1 – 2″ x 6″ strip of fabric. See diagram 1.
2. Stack these strips on top of each other, right sides (print) facing up on all pieces. Take the time to line the pieces up as accurately as possible. To cut your first shapes lining up the template on your stack of stripes as per diagram 2.
Pay careful attention to the direction of the template. I remembered the direction by thinking that the right angle corner was on the top of the strips on the left side. See diagram 2 for assistance. (Note: For the purposes of this tutorial I have put a pieces of what paper under my template so you can easily see it against the fabric.)
3. Use the template to cut the remaining pieces. Pay careful attention to the direction of the template. I remembered the direction by thinking that the right angle corner was on the bottom of the strips on the right side. See diagram 3a for assistance. (Note: For the purposes of this tutorial I have put a pieces of what paper under my template so you can easily see it against the fabric.)
4. Use your rotary cutter and ruler to cut all remaining pieces required for the block as per the instructions in the book. Cutting instructions can be found on the disc that came with the book. Block directions are located on page 208. You can also use the cutting instructions on the conversion chart. I have used the From Marti Michell Patchwork Templates Set A and accompanying conversion chart to cut all my pieces for this block.
5. Join 49B to 49A as per diagram 5. This step can be chain pieced to make all 8 rectangle units that make up this block. Diagram 5 shows how to line up the engineered corners of your pieces if you’re using the From Marti Michell Patchwork Templates Set A templates to cut your pieces.
Tip: For this tutorial I’m going to be showing you how it would come together if you chain piece each step. You could chain piece the entire block if you feel comfortable doing so.
6. Join Unit A to Unit B (as per diagram 6a). This step can be chain pieced to make all 4 square units that make up this block.
7. Join Unit C to Unit D, join Unit E to Unit F (as per diagram 7a). This step can be chain pieced to make the 2 rows that make up this block.
8. Join the top row to the bottom row. Pay careful attention to lining up the middle seam (indicated by the arrow in diagram 8a).
9. Huzzah! You just made Katherine! Now, while you’re still warm let’s make another block!
The Farmer’s Wife 1930’s Sew-along Blogger Line up for Month 1
The Farmer’s Wife 1930’s Sampler Quilt Sew-along Official Bloggers will be posting their tips, tricks and tutorials for the blocks as they are released. You’ll be able to find them at the following links.
29/09/2015: Angie @ GnomeAngel.com
01/10/2015: Angie @ GnomeAngel.com
02/10/2015: Jodi @ Tales of Cloth
06/10/2015: Angie @ GnomeAngel.com
07/10/2015: Alyce @ Blossom Heart Quilts
08/10/2015: Angie @ GnomeAngel.com
13/10/2015: Angie @ GnomeAngel.com
14/10/2015: Melissa @ Ms Midge
15/10/2015: Angie @ GnomeAngel.com
20/10/2015: Angie @ GnomeAngel.com
22/10/2015: Angie @ GnomeAngel.com
23/10/2015: Tina @ Emily Ann’s Closet
27/10/2015: Angie @ GnomeAngel.com
28/10/2015: Rachel @ Wooden Spoon Quilts
Blog posts will be published as per the timezone of the blogger. Why not subscribe to their blogs via their mailing list or a blog reader such as Bloglovin’ so you don’t miss a post!
The Farmer’s Wife 1930s Sampler Quilt: Inspiring Letters from Farm Women of the Great Depression and 99 Quilt Blocks That Honor Them by Laurie Aaron Hird for Fons & Porter/F+W; RRP $28.99 – Click here to purchase.
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