Spectrum QAL 2020 Block 8: Blue Stitch collection by Riley Blake Designs

Today we’re working on Block 8! We’re two-thirds of the way through piecing the blocks, but I’m so excited that I had to lay the blocks out on the floor, and they all look amazing together! Soon, we’ll be sewing the entire quilt together.

And the blocks look exceptionally gorgeous made up in the Blue Stitch collection by Riley Blake Designs.

Spectrum QAL Block 8

We’ve got a different unit to put together today, so let’s get started on the cutting.

Please note, my fabrics are labeled by individual blocks, not for the entire quilt. So, if I have labeled something Fabric D, it might not be the same Fabric D as in another block. I’m picking the fabrics individually for each block as I go.

Fabric A Background (white with blue squares)

  • Cut four (4) 3½” squares
  • Cut two (2) 4 ³⁄₁₆” squares (cut these in half diagonally twice to yield eight (8) triangles)

Fabric B Medium Blue with white flowers

  • Cut four (4) 3⅞” squares (cut these in half diagonally once to yield eight (8) triangles)

Fabric C Light Blue with dots

  • Cut four (4) 2⅝” squares
  • Cut two (2) 3″ squares

Fabric D Dark Blue

  • Cut two (2) 3″ squares

Fabric E White with dark blue dots

  • Cut four (4) 3″ squares

Fabric F White with flowers

  • Cut one (1) 2½” square

As usual, I lay the pieces out on the design board to check the values and ensure everything has been cut.

The components of Block 8 on the design board

Here’s the new unit we’re making today. It looks like a flying geese unit, and it is, but the center of it is pieced.

The pieced flying geese unit

You’ll be sewing the two white triangles’ short sides (Fabric A) to the blue square (Fabric C) to get the pieced triangle.

The pieced triangle for the center of the flying geese unit

Yes, the legs of the triangle are longer than the side of the square. It’s supposed to be like that. That extra overlap is how you get the ¼” seam allowance along the longer side. When sewing the second white triangle to the blue square, there will be some overhang at the end of the triangle. Your seam should finish right at that intersection.

The end of the white triangle will extend beyond the end of the seam to create the seam allowance.

Both of those seams get pressed away from the square. Trim off the dog ear, and the center pieced triangle unit is complete. You need to make four of them.

The pieced triangle

The next step is to add the large blue triangles (Fabric B) to each side of the pieced triangle.

Adding the large triangle to the pieced center triangle

Flip the dark triangle onto the pieced triangle and match up the pointed ends as shown below. Sew with a ¼” seam. Yes, the end of the large blue triangle extends beyond the pieced triangle, and that’s okay. The seam should not fall into this intersection.

Laying the dark triangle onto the pieced triangle

Press that seam away from the pieced triangle. Measure the unit to ensure it is the right size – the height should be 3½”. If it isn’t, perhaps the dark blue triangle didn’t get sewn in the correct position. Before you proceed, ensure the unit is 3½” or very close. You can always trim a little bit off, but if it’s too small, it needs to be fixed now.

Checking the height of the pieced flying geese unit

Trim off the dog ear.

Trim off the dog ear

Now you can attach the second triangle of dark fabric. Line the points at the bottom of the unit, which leaves some overhang at the top. This time, your seam should exit where these two pieces intersect.

Adding the second dark triangle to the pieced flying geese unit

This unit should be 3½” x 6½”. Trim off the dog ears.

The completed pieced flying geese unit

Using Fabrics C and E, make four half-square triangles. Using Fabrics C and D, make four half-square triangles.

Trim all units to 2½”.

Sew these half-square triangles and Fabric F together to get a nine-patch. Yes – I twirled the seams on the back. I can’t help myself!

The pressing plan for the nine-patch block

The last part is to sew the components together as you would sew a nine-patch, and the block is complete!

Spectrum QAL Block 8

I did not twirl the seams on the outer part. Twirling the seams would have resulted in uneven bulk around the star points. Instead, I pressed everything away from the center, which was less bulky (even with that point from the flying geese unit).

The pressing plan for Block 8

And there you have it. Block 8 is done. Only four more to go! I still need to decide which block I’ll use for the center of my quilt, as I need 13 blocks for the diagonal layout. I must do that soon.

I hope you’re having fun with the Spectrum QAL, and I can’t wait to see your finished quilts. I love a classic blue and white quilt, and this one made with Blue Stitch collection by Riley Blake Designs will be a knockout. Be sure to check out Claire’s and Paul’s Blocks 8 as well. I can’t wait to see how different these three quilts will be!

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