Sunday, December 28, 2014

RSC15 Sawtooth Block Tutorial

Next year's sampler quilt will be just a bit more preplanned than last year's.  There will still be new 6 inch sampler blocks each month to include in your quilt, but each block will be set in a sawtooth star to match the color of the block.  I'm writing a tutorial here for a general Sawtooth Star block to finish at 12 inches.  Refer back to it throughout the year.  All you will need to do is make a 6 inch block as the patterns are posted throughout the year and insert one into the center of each star block.

The Sawtooth Star is based on a flying goose unit.  There are LOTS of ways to make flying geese blocks.  If you have your own favorite, feel free to use it of course.  As long as your geese are 6.5 by 3.5 unfinished ( 6 inches by 3 inches finished), you are good to go.
My favorite flying goose method is using the companion angle and easy angle ruler.  I like that it allows the use of the same size strips as for the corner units, which seems like a better use of fabric to me than cutting larger squares in half.  So this sample block has a plain 6.5 inch square in the middle, but just imagine that it is a sampler block you have completed as part of the challenge.  In addition to your 6.5 inch block, you will need 3.5 inch strips of star point fabric and background color.  The star points should "match" the colors in the sampler block in that everything will be inspired by the color of the month.  For this tutorial, we are pretending that pink is the color of the month.  Don't take that as a hint of any sort, it is just the scrap fabric that was on top of the stack when I started my block.
The background fabric will form the body of the goose block.  It is cut from 3.5 inch strips using the companion angle ruler.  Cut 4 of these body units.  If you are going to be using a consistent background fabric throughout the quilt, feel free to cut some extras for later.  From the same strip you will also cut 4 - 3.5 inch squares.
The points of the stars will also come from 3.5 inch strips, this time of the colored fabric of the month.  Cut 8 triangles.
Start by assembling your goose blocks.  The star points get sewn first onto one side of the body units.
Then onto the other.  Press carefully and remove the dog ears.
Here is the layout of the block.  Four flying geese surround the center section and the background squares fill in the corners.
Sew the rows together and press.  The middle row seams iron to the center and the top and bottom rows are pressed out.
Your finished block should be 12.5 inches and will finish at 12 inches in the final quilt.  The center will be more interesting of course, after you have inserted your own sampler blocks each month.
I'll be posting 2 or 3 new sampler block patterns each month, but don't feel obligated to do things exactly my way.  How fun would these sawtooth star block be with a string block in the middle?  Any 6 inch sampler block would work if you don't like my choice.  Personalize this quilt as much as you like.  I promise, it won't hurt my feelings if you deviate from the directions.  

12 comments:

Deb @ Frugal Little Bungalow said...

It looks so easy with this ruler! :)

Ellen said...

Thanks for the tute....this is going to be great fun!

Needled Mom said...

It looks like it will be a fun year.

Cathy said...

That looks like it will make a really fun quilt. I just might have to add a third project to me rainbow challenge list. I seem to remember thinking that I wasn't going to do that.LOL

Karen said...

2015 is going to be a year. I love this block. I look forward to seeing what 6" blocks we will be making. Thanks for organizing this rainbow scrap challenge,

Jean said...

Thank you for using the ruler method. It works better for me.

Kate said...

I always use the sew the squares together and cut, it just works better for me.

Jennifer said...

maybe you already addressed this and i missed it: are you going to be posting about the colors for the alternating chain blocks throughout the year? hopefully they won't all need to be done at once at the end... sounds a bit overwhelming!

Cynthia Woodham said...

Time to dig out my rulers and maybe choose maybe 2-3 possible background fabrics ready for the start. I might make a sawtooth star block as a test run and it can be my quilt label for the project.

Jo said...

Great block idea. I did something similar but using interlocking wonky stars with 2014 sampler blocks
http://jobutterfield.blogspot.com.au/2014/08/fnwf-over-at-gone-stitching-with-cheryll.html

Sil said...

Thanks for the tutorial. Happy new year. Greetings from Argentina

Quilting Nonnie said...

I'm in for my second year! I like your sawtooth star idea. I really love string piecing and that might be the way I go with the centers. Thanks for taking us along for the 2015 RSC!