Sunday, April 1, 2018

April Hive 2 Tutorial - Paper Pieced Block Rock'n Star

April Hive 2 Paper Pieced Block Rock'n Star

Hello everyone! This is my second year participating in the Stash Bee. A big Hello to all the ladies from 2017's Hive 8!!! I see a few of you are back for another year.

Last year, I crashed another hive to try paper piecing for the first time (Kim from Hive 5, 2017) and I absolutely fell in love.  Now I can't get enough and try all sorts of amazing patterns that I would never have thought I could make.

This year I would like ask all of you for the 12" Global Concepts foundation paper pieced (FPP) block from the Block Rock'n series on Craftsy by 627handworks (

It is part of a 12 block series that you can use together or individually. The entire series is completely free, however you only need the one block for our purposes. You can download the Global Concepts block here*:

*If you have never used Craftsy, even if the pattern is free you will need to add the pattern to your cart and "checkout" before you can download the PDF pattern, it will not ask for any payment information.

I feel like this block is pretty straightforward even if you are new to paper piecing.  Everyone may do things a little differently when it comes to FPP so if you do not need instruction please do your thing.

I had to look through several FPP tutorials before I found one that really resonated with me so if my instructions are not making sense to you, try watching a few you tube videos on the topic.

A few of my favorite FPP tips are:
  • Check your pattern to make sure the scale is correct (see the top left corner of this pattern for a 1" scale).
  • Color in the pattern before starting, this helps during construction so you do not confuse where each color will go.
  • Cut your fabric pieces too big, you will have more waste but you know it won't be to small and that is a major bummer.
  • Wonder Clips are your best friend.  Pins tend to cause fabric distortion when sewing each completed section together, but not clips! 
  • When sewing sections together, first use a basting stitch to make sure you have lined up the pattern correctly. That way you can remove the basting stitch easily to start over, or if everything came together as it should, you can go back over it with a small stitch to finish.

Let's get started!  You will need four copies of the one page pattern to create the entire 12" block. Each A/B block should measure 6.5" unfinished. You will be using the same #1-5 fabrics for each of your four quadrants.

Here is my fabric pull (although I did end up moving a few things around in the end):

Color 1 -  Black print (a very dark gray would also be fine if you don't have black) I realized most of my dark prints are black with white, but you don't have to limit yourself to just black and white.  Just make sure if there are other colors that they are not overpowering or clashing with the pinks
Color 2- Light Pink
Color 3-Medium Pink
Color 4- Dark Pink
Color 5- Same Black print as #1

Use all the same fabrics for 1-5 throughout your block. I am asking for prints but if you have solids that would work and you don't have a print, feel free to throw those in, just try not to make the entire block with solids. Please keep batiks to a minimum. As much as I'd like to include them, please do not use fabric with any skulls or anything that may be deemed "sinful" (use your best judgement). The recipient of this quilt lives and works at a program in which these things are prohibited.  I already need to remake a few blocks because I found a skull on the scissors in the Libs True Love print. Since we all seem to have the same fabric tastes, do not worry if you use a repeat of something I or any of our wonderful hive mates may have used.

I pre-cut the pieces in the following sizes:

16 pieces Black - cut 3 1/2" x 8"
8 pieces of each Pink - cut 3" x 7"

I tend to like bigger fabric pieces when I FPP so these sizes are larger than needed and creates more waste.

I start my FPP projects by pre-folding each of the four lines between 1-5 on the pattern with my trusty cardboard notepad back.  Best ever!

Pin fabric #1 onto the template with the wrong side facing you, making sure the the #1 wedge is completely covered by the fabric:

Fold the line between #1 and #2 back and trim to 1/4". Then add fabric #2, right sides together, and pin.  Again, double check to make sure fabric #2 will cover wedge #2:

Now sew on the line between #1 and #2. My Juki does best when I use a stitch length of 1.  Some machines may do better at 1.5.

Press open:

Repeat these steps until you have completed all A and B pieces and trim to size (taking care to leave the marked 1/4" seam:

Join your A and B pieces together.  I like to use pins to make sure each seam lines up then I clip in-between with wonder clips to hold both pieces together, remove the pins and sew:

Please press the seam open and remove the paper only at the seam:

I'm still trying to decide if I want to mix up all of the pieces to give it a more scrappy look or not.  Since I'm not sure, that means less sewing for you!  You can send the four star quadrants to me without sewing them together.  Please leave the paper attached since I'll need it to sew the quadrants together, and taking off the paper is one of my favorite parts of FPP!

Thank you!


Jan @Cocoa Quilts said...

Rachel, since you are mixing the blocks up, can I use two different blacks? Keeping each set of A/B the same black.

Let me know.

McAllisterWench said...

Jan, yes that would be fine!

Jan @Cocoa Quilts said...

Rochelle, blocks went in the mail today.