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How to sew the Lone Star quilt block

 

Once the pieces are cut using the Trace’n Create Lone Star templates it’s important to know how to sew the lone star quilt block for the tree skirt to ensure success every time. This is going to be so easy because there are no inset seams. I’m doing the happy dance in my studio about this great reason to use these templates.

There’s one thing we do need to be aware of when sewing the pieces together – bias edges. A bias edge is cut on an angle.

Each piece of the lone star has at least one bias edge which means that it can stretch easily and distort causing problems with the finished size of the block.

To prevent distortion or stretch, the bias edge should be sprayed with starch and pressed before sewing the pieces together. This gives the bias edge a nice firmness and makes for accurate piecing every time!

 

Starch help to sew accurate seams with bias edges
Starch help to sew accurate seams with bias edges

 

 

I also recommend pinning the pieces together when sewing as this will also help prevent any stretching and distortion. The flower head pins are ideal for this as they are long making it easy to remove them as you sew along.

 

Pin bias edges
Pin bias edges

 

Sewing the pieces together

Before sewing, lay out all of the pieces to create a square block which is one quarter of the total block. I stacked all the pieces on top of each other for the 4 blocks. The block is a mirror image of pieces.

By laying out all the pieces in order on the table beside my sewing machine, I hope not to get any mixed up when sewing the pieces together.

 

Pieces laid out in order ready for sewing
Pieces laid out in order ready for sewing

 

 

Sew piece A & B together first. This is the small triangle and diamond. The small triangle will align with the point of the diamond and hang over a ¼″ beyond the seam allowance.

 

Pieces A & B sewn together
Pieces A & B sewn together

 

 

I suggest chain piecing to speed up the sewing process. Chain piecing is when you keep feeding in pieces under the foot and sewing them together without stopping to remove the pieces prior to the next. This method also has less thread wastage.

Then sew piece C, the large triangle to the above unit to create half a block. Piece C is aligned with the top edge of the A-B unit and hangs over a ¼″ below the seam allowance. The 2 units are mirror image of each other.

 

Piece C sewn to A-B unit
Piece C sewn to A-B unit

 

Sewing the blocks together

Sew the mirror image pieces together to create 4 blocks. I do suggest pinning these pieces together for accuracy especially where seams meet. My favorite pins for pinning seams together are the Clover Fork pins. I find that they hold the seams together and I have perfectly matched seams 9 out of 10 times.

Be very careful to never sew over a pin as it can do a lot of unwanted damage to your sewing machine. Sew up to the pin, remove the pin and continue on sewing.

 

Fork pin at seams
Fork pin at seams

 

 

 

Each corner of the lone star is made with two mirror image units to create an 18″ block.

 

One corner block
One corner block

 

 

The finished quilt center looks like this and is 36″ square – a perfect lone star and not a single inset seam to be found.

 

The lone star center
The lone star center

 

 

I chose to have my lone star symmetrical and used only the one main fabric with the accent of the grey stripe. It could have been 2 different fabrics or many fabrics for a scrappy star. There are many options that can be used for this lone star block.

We can learn sew much from sewing the Lone Star quilt block! Onward and forward to the border. Yes, it still needs to be bigger – remember it’s a big tree. With the sewing of the lone star center of the tree skirt complete I can think about designing the border using half square triangles and another cool gadget I picked up at my LQS. See you tomorrow.

Happy Quilting.

 

 

Jennifer runs Quilts by Jen, a fantastic educational resource for quilters with many great free tutorials ranging from how to choose fabrics, understanding the value of fabrics, pressing, building Bargello runs, pinning, binding, sandwiching, couching, quilting, and much more. Check them out!

2 Comments

  1. Amy

    I have not seen this template before for the Lone Star, and really like it.

  2. Doris McCarty

    Thank you for sharing. This is on my bucket list!

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