Sunday, January 1, 2017

Hive 1 Tutorial - Disappearing 4 Patch Block

Hello Everyone and Happy New Year!

I'm Diana, the bee mama this year and the hive mama for hive #1. I'm so excited to get this year started. I've enjoyed getting to know my hive-mates a bit more this past month and I look forward to seeing all of the creative blocks that everyone in the bee will make throughout the next 12 months. I blog over at Red Delicious Life and you can also find me on Instagram as RedDeliciousLife.

Now I'd had such a clear idea of what I wanted to request of my hive. The color palette was chosen. The foundation of the block was to be made up of half square triangles. What could go wrong? I cut my fabric squares, made my HSTs... and hate it. And. This. Was. Yesterday. OH CRAP! So it was time for me to dig deep and look back through my Pinterest boards and previous bee blocks and see if anything grabbed me. Thank goodness, a plan formed fairly quickly. One of my hive mates requested a disappearing 4-patch block last year that I absolutely loved. So this is what hive 1 will be making this month:

So here are the details.

Color Palette
Purple and Gray

I'll be honest - purple is not a color that was really in my stash and it gave me a good excuse to go out and purchase some new fabrics. If that is the case for you, please let me know and we can come up with an alternate plan (unless you want an excuse to buy some new fabric).  I have a cousin who is getting married in March and his fiancée's favorite color is purple which is why I've chosen it.

For this block, you'll need to use 4 different fabrics -- 2 purples and 2 grays. Here are some examples of fabrics in my stash that would work well:

The purples can range from lighter to darker. I would prefer that the grays be on the lighter side -- think blenders and low volume grays. While I don't have any true solid colored fabrics shown, using solids are absolutely fine. I just didn't include any here since they are reserved for another project.

Cutting & Sewing

Once you've selected your 4 fabrics, you will cut (1) 7.5-inch square out of each of the fabrics and then you will sew them into a 4-patch as shown below. This block should be 14.5" square.

Some basic sewing criteria for me -- please use a standard 1/4-inch seam allowance (not scant). Also, please press all of your seams open. This makes a huge difference for me since I quilt most of my projects on my home machine and getting the quilt top to lay as flat as possible is critical for smooth free motion quilting.

Now comes the really fun part. If you've never made a disappearing patch block before, you basically cut it up again, rearrange it, and re-sew it. Make a cut 5.5" in from all 4 sides of the block. If you have a rotating mat, it would come in really handy but just take your time if you don't.

Now, we're going to move a few of the pieces before we re-sew it. The 4 corners and the center square don't move. The rectangular pieces move (from top to bottom // side to side) but they don't flip or rotate. See below:

Yes, the above looks a bit like a football playlist but I hope it makes sense. Here is what it looks like with the rectangle pieces moved:

Once you sew it together, here is your completed block:

The final block measurement should be close to 13.5" but it's okay if it's not quite accurate and there's no need for you to trim it. Once I've received all my blocks I'll decide on the final block size and will trim them at that time. It took me about an hour to make both blocks - this one and the one at the beginning of the post. I hope you have fun with this easy block to start off your stash bee year!

~ Diana


Kathy Bertelsen said...

Diana... I absolutely love this block. I have started a quilt with this block and the pattern is great. Of course I love the colors... Great choice Diana.. Looking forward to this coming year

Ookpiik said...

Any tips for sewing with pressed open seams? Half the time the seams get sewn together even though I pressed them open.

Diana @ Red Delicious Life said...

The best advice that I can give is to stop before you get to the seam and make sure that it is open before sewing over it. Also, you could pin right at that spot. Just do your best. If it's truly an issue for you and pressing to the side is what works for you, then do that. I don't want to stress you out.

Emily said...

Diana, if someone is short on purples, let me know. I am a lover of purple and could send some wherever needed, then you'll have more variety than if it comes from your stash.

QuiltOph Ophélie said...

Hi Diana, :)
This is great block and especially because I never tried it. Can't wait to get started!
I'll email you tomorrow though for the fabric selection because I'm really short of purple so I want to show you what I have . I have one or two solids and a few greys.
But I can buy some at my Quilt store if nothing fits.

Diane Kay said...

How many Hive One blocks are done? I'm hoping to complete mine by the 20th. This will be my first time mailing a block for Stash Bee. dg