Thursday, July 19, 2012

String Quilt Tutorial

I've had some questions on my method for making the Block-a-Day string quilt.  Here is the link to Karen's tutorial -- really, I am just copying her method for those of you who can't get to the link!

I am using quilters muslin for the foundation on my blocks.  I've seen some people use pages from telephone books, or old computer paper (remember the kind with green and white stripes?).  But both my paper-piecing foundation tear-ers have left home, so I wanted a foundation that I could leave in the quilt.

The foundations are cut to 10" square -- you don't need to be especially precise here, since the block will be squared up after it is pieced.  I am making the block that has a white strip through the center, so I press all my foundations in half diagonally to make a line across the middle of the block.

 Press gently so the block is flat, but the crease still shows.

I place the block on my small cutting mat with the corners lined up on the 45 degree line.  This makes it easier to get the 2" strip of white fabric placed evenly on the crease.

Place the first colored strip right side down and even with the cut edge of the white center strip.  I pin the first strips so the center strip stays in place.

Press the colored strip away from the white center strip.

The "strings" don't have to be straight -- slightly off-kilter strips will add interest to your blocks.

 If a "string" is too wide, you can trim it after it's sewn on.  Just be sure not to cut the foundation muslin!

Continue adding strings until the entire foundation is covered.  Try to put a wider piece on the corner, this will help  when you start sewing blocks to each other.

 Here you can see the foundation muslin remains on the reverse of the colored strips.

I have my small ironing mat and iron next to my sewing machine so I can piece and press without jumping up to go to the iron.  I set my timer for 45 minutes, when it "dings," I get up and do something else.  Helps keep my back from getting stiff!

Here is a photo of the 32 blocks I have pieced so far. 

Today is the 30th day of Summer, so for the moment at least I am ahead!

From the desk of your


  1. Handy tips in there - like the idea of lining up the strip on your cutting mat

  2. Thanks for writing your tutorial. Your blocks look lovely and colourful!

  3. Oh wow!!! That is a super neat way to use up scraps!!! I love it!!! :) Thank you so much for posting a tutorial and link. This is definitely something I can do as a novice quilter. :)


Thanks for taking your time to comment. If I don't answer in an email, it's because you're a no-reply commenter and I can't find you!