Saturday, February 27, 2010

Red Cross Block Tutorial

Here is a little quilt block tutorial for you. I LOVE red cross quilts lately. I just do. I can't help it. Mine are a little wonky, but it only takes a bit to make it fun.

I am not awesome at making tutorials, so forgive me please. I hope this is not too much information, but I am a firm believer that too much information is better than none at all and I am a visual I am going to assume you are too. So go grab some fabric you like and a little drink (H2O, Iced Tea, coffee, some Glen Livett your dad left when he visited last whatever you poison is) and let's make some pretty cool little blocks. I am making these for my Pillow swap. But the tutorial is for my Row10 quilting bee ( I love you girls!). Everyone else is more than welcome to make some too, no worries! We can even make a flickr group if there is not one already.

OK. First and pretty important step. Pick your fabric! I really like turquoise, red and white. I don't think the white has to be white, it can be natural or cream or any light linen. Above I have some Katie Jump Rope (I bought it through a co op a couple years ago and don't have too much left and that really makes me sad), a funny red dot by Windham (If you really want to know I will get up and go check the selvedge), a mystery blue that Shannon bought me when she lived in Japan, a really cool linen I bought at JoAnn's (see I can slum sometimes and it feels so good!) and finally a natural muslin ( I got this when mom and I went to Hancocks of Paducah) Hi Mom! I love you too!
OK, choose what you want to start out with...just to get the hang of everything. I normally begin with my favorite fabrics so I will be sure to cut right. I used the mystery blue and red dots. Here are the dimensions I used. You do whatever you want, but if you want them to look like mine copy me.
I cut (selvedge to selvedge) the blue - 1.5 inch
and the red is 1.25 inch.
Cut both in half (At the fold line most likely)
and sew with a quarter inch seam (blue-red-blue)
Press your seams. Jinny Beyer says it doesn't matter where your seams go, but I like my seams to go the same direction, or open....depends on how fussy I feel. I am not nearly as cool as her.
So, after your seams are pressed cut your little the first bit of your blocks. Mine are cut in 3.25 inch segments.
Then cut your 3.25 inch rectangle in "half". I took some liberated liberty here. Some are really exactly in half others are slanted in half and others are really off center. I think that makes it fun.
Make sure you keep your segments together. It will drive you a bit nuts if you get some separated.
In order to make sure mine do get stitched up with their proper partner I line them up like this. Does that make sense?
You will be sewing them to the other end of the 1.25 inch red you cut at the beginning.

Make sure you are stitching them to their partner if you cut them crooked.

Cut the apart and press seams.

Now I cut 3x 2 inch strips of the linen to sew around the little cross block.

This is really not rocket science, but I took pictures, so here they are...

I kinda trim them up as a press them.

Cut them apart and press the seams open.
When you sew the last sides on I like to use a little straight edge to trim the seams up. I really do not like gunky seams.
Then press the blocks open and get ready to get wild!

Here is the really fun part. I like to use a template (the one above is a 5 inch ruler from my days with the Dear Jane quilt) I lay it all crooked on the block and trim around it. You do not need to make all your blocks crazy, just a couple to really give your quilt movement. Most of mine are only a bit wonky.

So now all your blocks are cut and you can sew them together for whatever purpose you want. Obviously, if you want a big quilt you will need to cut heaps of strips.
I would love to see what you make with your crosses!


LJ said...

what a wonderful tutorial!
This is how you want your blocks for your row10?

the Campfollower said...

Hey there LauraJ. I do want my blocks to look like this...but with white, natural or cream instead of the blue. I used blue for these becuase they are for another project ;o)

Vicki said...

great tutorial! another thing to add to my list of things to make.

The Army of Four said...

Great tute, Tia! Thank you!

calamity kim said...

OK_ so I did your row but maybe I should have sashed it? Can you come look at Flickr and tell me and I will take it apart and sash it so there is a separation between crosses. I need help, I tell ya!

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