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Sewing a hidden square quilt block involves creating a design where the smaller square blocks are nested within larger square blocks, giving the illusion of a continuous pattern. Here are the steps to sew a hidden square quilt block:
- Fabric in desired colors and patterns
- Sewing machine
- Rotary cutter
- Cutting mat
- Ironing board
- Quilting thread
Step 1: Choose your fabrics Select fabrics in colors and patterns that complement each other. You will need a fabric for the large square blocks and a contrasting fabric for the smaller square blocks.
Step 2: Cut the fabric Using a rotary cutter and cutting mat, cut the larger square blocks to the desired size, adding 1/4 inch for seam allowances. Cut the smaller square blocks to be 1 inch smaller than the larger blocks, also adding 1/4 inch for seam allowances.
Step 3: Assemble the smaller square blocks Sew the smaller square blocks together in a pattern, creating a larger block made up of the smaller blocks. Press the seams open with an iron.
Step 4: Sew the larger square blocks Place the assembled smaller square blocks face down on top of the larger square blocks, aligning the edges. Pin the layers together and sew around the edge, leaving a 1/4 inch seam allowance. Repeat for each larger square block.
Step 5: Press the seams Press the seams open with an iron, being careful not to distort the block.
Step 6: Assemble the quilt top Arrange the blocks in a desired pattern and sew them together, using a 1/4 inch seam allowance. Press the seams open.
Step 7: Quilt the top Layer the quilt top, batting, and backing fabric together and quilt as desired. Bind the edges of the quilt with bias tape or another finishing method of your choice.
Congratulations, you have sewn a hidden square quilt block!
Sew the squares together.
Mark the wrong side of the unit with a pencil line aligning the corners of the squares and the intersection of the seams.
Line up the corner of the square or triangle you will add to the corner of the unit:
Sew a seam one thread's width from the marked / ironed line. This tiny allowance makes room for the fold of the fabric so that the point isn't cut off the triangle.
Then fold the triangle into position, using the squares to assist alignment then press.
Trim away excess fabric to reduce bulk. Leaving a 1/4" seam, and trim the ears.
This is a great technique for making half square triangles that eliminates the need to directly manipulate the stretchy bias of the triangle. It utilizes two easy to cut squares producing two half square triangles.
On the back of the lighter fabric, draw a pencil line, diagonally from corner to corner.
Stack a pair of light and dark squares, right sides together. Sew a 1/4 inch seam allowance on each side of the line.
You will end up with something like this.
Now cut along the diagonal line.
Press the seam together to set the seam. Then press towards the darkest fabric.
To trim the block to the exact size line up the diagonal 45°angle with the ruler on your seam.
And then carefully trim your block with a rotary cutter.
How to Resize Quilt Blocks:
The first step in modifying any quilt block is to decide on the size of your finished quilt block. You can come to a decision based on a number of factors: doubling a pattern, cutting your pattern in half, or choosing the size based on your available fabric.
NOTE: When working from a pattern’s cutting instructions, make sure you remove the seam allowance before doubling or tripling the size. For instance, if your pattern calls for 3-1/2″ squares, first you’ll subtract the sum of the seam allowances (1/2″), double the finished block size (from 3″ to 6″), and add the seam allowance back in (1/2″). So, when all is said and done, you will cut a 6-1/2″ piece of fabric.
Resizing Square Blocks:
Square blocks are the easiest to resize. Simply add to your finished block measurement. For example, if you’d like your finished block to be a 4″ square, you’ll need to cut a 4-1/2″ square of fabric.
Resizing Rectangular Blocks:
Similarly to the square, for rectangle blocks, you’ll add to the length and width measurements of your finished block. If you’re doubling block that measures 3″ x 4″ in your quilt, you’ll cut a 6-1/2″ x 8-1/2″ rectangle of fabric.
Resizing Half-Square Triangle Blocks:
When you want to change the size of a Half-Square Triangle block, add 7/8″ to the desired finished block size. To make a 4″ finished block, you’d cut 4-7/8″ squares.
Resizing Quarter Square Triangle:
Since there are two cut lines and two seam lines in a Quarter-Square Triangle block you’ll need to add 1-1/4″ to the desired finished block size. For a finished block that’s 4″, you’d cut your squares 5-1/4″.