There are still bits of color in the Aspens nearby so we decided to enjoy a Sunday drive after church yesterday. November! It's November. We finally have rain falling after months without. There is snow in the mountains which is a real blessing after last year's lack of it. The winter birds are arriving and their calls across the lake as we sat and just soaked in the feeling of fall gave me a bit of a thrill. (Okay, a huge thrill, as I really look forward to our winter visitors and the amazing birding opportunities that begin this month.
It also means it is time for the next row in this years free BOM. This month we will be making Pinwheels. This is a block that goes together pretty quickly and I really love to incorporate into a lot of my quilts. Today I am going to share my process for making Pinwheel blocks that will give me 16 unique blocks for my row.
I like to take advantage of chain piecing for making these HSTs. I simply sew down one side, right off of the edge, then line up my next A/B squares- making sure that I butt them up right next to the needle-and sew the next combination of squares. (notice that I put the seam that was previously sewn at the top.)
I like to give the squares a quick press before moving to my cutting table. For this method I will be making two cuts. I do not move the squares after making the first diagonal cut but move the ruler instead. If you use a small mat you can rotate the mat to make it easier to make your two cuts without moving the fabric pieces.
Once the HSTs are cut they need to be pressed and trimmed. Trimming is one of the keys to gettting sharp points in your finished Pinwheel blocks. By lining up the diagonal line on my ruler with the seamline I am assured of sharp points on my HSTs. So I find it best to line the diagonals up and trim the first two sides.
Then I rotate the ruler and trim the second two sides. This technique results in perfect HSTs ready to us in my Pinwheel blocks.
With my HSTs trimmed it is time to join them together. in my pattern I show you how to lay out all four for the block, but you can also just stack them in the same order for this step and it works out fine.
Once the HSTs are joined they are pressed to the dark side,
Now I have two units that look like this...
All I need to do is rotate the bottom one and the Pinwheel is formed.
All of the seams, even those diagonals, now line up perfectly for sewing together and I find I do not even need to use pins to hold things in place. This is a block that benefits from fanning the seam as you press. It really reduces the bulk in the center and helps the Pinwheel block to lay flatly. You know you have fanned the seam correctly when the mini pinwheel appears in the middle. Fanning the seam just means that I use my fingers to encourage one seam to go up and the other side to go down as I get ready to set my iron on the block for a final press.
The other benefit of those fanned seams is how nicely the seams lock together when it is time to join the Pinwheel blocks to make the row.
I love opening up my blocks and seeing those perfectly matched seams! I pressed my seams to one side and they are nice and flat, but of course if you like to fan the seams here go right ahead.
Here is my completed row. I want to take a moment to remind you of the importance of checking the measurements of these units as you go. It is an easy step to skip but vital to having everything fit together in the end.
You can find the pattern for this row by clicking on the link below:
Thanks for sewing along with me. I have really loved seeing the beautiful quilts being shared on my Facebook Sew Along page. May you find joy in your journey!
Welcome to the site of Debra Davis-a woman who loves the Lord and loves to quilt.
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My other blog where I share about my walk of faith:
Sitting at His Feet
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