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Practical Orchard Quilt Block Pattern

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Sewing a practical orchard quilt block can be a fun and rewarding project for quilters of all skill levels. Here are the steps you can follow:

Materials:

  • Fabric scraps in shades of green, brown, and white
  • Sewing machine
  • Rotary cutter or scissors
  • Cutting mat
  • Ruler
  • Iron and ironing board
  • Quilting thread

Instructions:

  1. Cut your fabric into the following pieces:
  • (2) 2.5” x 2.5” white squares
  • (2) 2.5” x 2.5” green squares
  • (4) 2.5” x 4.5” green rectangles
  • (1) 2.5” x 4.5” brown rectangle
  • (2) 2.5” x 6.5” green rectangles
  • (1) 4.5” x 4.5” white square
  1. Sew the 2.5” x 2.5” white squares to the 2.5” x 2.5” green squares to create two half-square triangles.

  2. Press the seams to the dark side and trim the half-square triangles to 2” x 2”.

  3. Sew the two half-square triangles together to create a square. Repeat to make a total of four squares.

  4. Sew the 2.5” x 4.5” green rectangles to the sides of the 2.5” x 4.5” brown rectangle.

  5. Sew the two 2.5” x 6.5” green rectangles to the top and bottom of the piece from step 5.

  6. Sew two of the squares from step 4 to the sides of the piece from step 6.

  7. Sew the remaining two squares from step 4 to the top and bottom of the 4.5” x 4.5” white square.

  8. Sew the two pieces from steps 7 and 8 together to complete the orchard quilt block.

  9. Press the block well and trim to 12.5” x 12.5”.

  10. Repeat steps 1-10 to make as many orchard quilt blocks as desired.

  11. Once you have enough blocks, you can sew them together to create a quilt top, adding sashing and borders as desired.

With these steps, you can create a beautiful and practical orchard quilt block that can be used for a variety of quilting projects. Enjoy!

 

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.

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Stack a pair of light and dark squares, right sides together. Sew a 1/4 inch seam allowance on each side of the line.

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You will end up with something like this.

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Now cut along the diagonal line.

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Press the seam together to set the seam. Then press towards the darkest fabric.

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To trim the block to the exact size line up the diagonal 45°angle with the ruler on your seam.

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And then carefully trim your block with a rotary cutter.

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On the back of the lightest square draw a pencil line 90° to the existing seam on the diagonal:

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Butt the central seems:

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Sew a 1/4 inch seam allowance on the right and left side of the diagonal line.

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Then cut the seam on the pencil line.

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The secret to the nine patch is all about ironing seams so that they butt when they are joined.

Cut 5 A squares and 4 B squares in the required size.

Chain piecing, join a B square to only 3 of the A squares, right sides together, with a 1/4 inch seam allowance. No need to press just yet.

The result will be:

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Next, take the remaining A and B squares and, chain piecing, join them to these units, right sides together, with a one 1/4 inch seam allowance:

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 Your result will be:

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To make this faster you can cut strips.

Cut A and B strips for the appropriate width, and join them into A/B/A and B/A/B units. Note you will need twice the length of B/A/B strips, as there are two of these units. Once your strips are joined, right sides together, with a 1/4 inch seam allowance. Press every seam towards the dark fabric.

Cut across your pre-joined strips to create the units needed for the nine patch:

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You will achieve the same result as above, but this method is faster.

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To make a standard 9 patch, the width of the unit cut from pre-joined strips is the same as the width of the original strips.

Press all the seams to the dark fabric so that all the seems butt up.

Join the B/A/B units to your A/B/A units with butted seams, right sides together, with a 1/4 inch seam allowance.

The direction of the final, central seam is optional. But guided by the placement of the block in the larger scheme, and wherever possible, iron to facilitate budding the seam joints.

Wider Application:

Just as the 4 patch, you can apply this methodology to all kinds of 9 patch blocks. As long as the patch has an underlying 3x3 grid, no matter how many pieces, the basic principle applies. It is repeated over and over, each 9 patch laying adjacent to the next 9 patch. As long as you keep pressing seams in pairs of opposite directions, piecing will be smooth sailing.

Try these out. Each block has an underlying 3x3 grid, and can be pieaced as a 9 patch.

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Sometimes it is not obvious which direction is the dark with complicated blocks like those above. Just remember the basic ironing plan is:

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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″.
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