Hi Quilty Friends!
A few weeks ago I volunteered and was chosen to test an upcoming quilt pattern for Cora’s Quilts. I have never tested a pattern before and really loved it! Cora’s Quilts will be releasing six new patterns this fall. The pattern I tested was “Diana” featuring a the Broken Dishes block made using the “pinless” construction method. One FQ (fat quarter) of background material and 1 FQ of print fabric is enough to make 2 of the Diana blocks.
This block was designed to be sewn without the use of pins. When placing the fabrics right-sides-together, the seams of each block will nest right up against each other and stay in place without using pins when sewing. Hmmmm…..I was skeptical as I am a HUGE pinner! I want to get my seams matched the 1st time and not have to unsew…EVER…(which of course is not always the case).
I purchased these two Denyse Schmidt Quilters Quarters from Joann’s a year or more ago. Four FQs were included in 1 yard of fabric and you cut on the dotted line to separate the quarters. There were 4 different color-ways and I may or may not have some of each of them. :o) Unfortunately they are out of print and I can no longer find them anywhere so I was a bit hesitant to cut into them, but I am sooo glad I did as my blocks are beautiful! And isn’t fabric supposed to be used and created into something beautiful and not sit in your stash!? Use your fabric stashes people! Ok…moving on….
The instructions are very clear with good illustrations and easy-to-follow steps. Started with two squares – 1 background (white) and 1 print – drawing diagonal lines corner to corner on the wrong side of the white square, then sewing along both sides of the line, in both directions.
You then cut the square into quarters first – NOT on the diagonal pencil line (don’t ask me how I know this) and THEN in half on the diagonal line yielding 8 HST (half square triangles). The instructions clearly state the correct way to cut them (ahem). Fortunately when I did cut them the wrong way it worked out and I still got my HST…whew. But I had a brief moment of panic.
Pressed and trimmed each HST. There were 192 for my 12 blocks. Trust me – this was not my most favorite part of the construction. It took forever!
Now came the fun part – constructing the block. Very clear instruction on which way to stitch and press the HST. Pressing the pieces in the correct direction was critical for the pinless construction to work.
Using the pinless construction method and nesting the seams right up against each other and aligning the edges of the blocks, I sewed my first 2 HSTs and OH MY GOODNESS!
My points lined up PERFECT! Every.single.time.
I squealed so loud and startled my dog lying on the floor! Ha!
I have to admit however, that when it came time to sew the 2 larger halves of the first block together, I did insert a couple of pins as the seam was a bit longer and I wanted my seams to match, but all the seams still nested with each other and matched very well. As I sewed the rest of the blocks I realized I didn't need the extra pins after all!
I’ve made 12 blocks so far, but haven’t completed the sashing. I did add other fabrics in similar colors (April Showers and Happy Go Lucky by Bonnie and Camille). I am very happy with the pattern, the design and the blocks and look forward to finishing the top.
You can view the pattern release post at Cora’s Quilts here . You can see her version and the versions of the other pattern testers too.
They will also be offering a coupon code for 25% off the pattern when purchased through their Etsy shop until August 1, 2014.
Use Coupon Code: ANNEandDIANA.
This was a fun project and I highly recommend this pattern! It was easy to follow with wonderful results and you will LOVE the pinless construction! I know I did!
This quilt would be pretty in Christmas fabrics, red and white fabrics, solids with a darker background fabric, reproduction prints….whatever. I also think the block is substantial enough to just make a few for a table runner or topper too.