Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Bonnie & Camille Urban Lattice Blocks (a tutorial)

The Bonnie & Camille charm swap has given way to the Bonnie & Camille charm along, and it's been great fun to see the WIP of the other members. I knew for a long time that I needed an excuse to make my own version of Lee's quilt from Freshly Pieced. However, I couldn't find the original Urban Lattice quilt along instructions. Not letting the fact that I've never foundation paper pieced deter me, I made up some templates and had a try. I am by no means an expert, but am sharing my process below. Please feel free to add some tips, or correct me if I've done something unconventional or weird!

I started with some regular A4 paper, and trimmed it down to square (a little over 8 inches). Rule a line diagonally down the centre to find the middle, then mark out lines as illustrated below:

I drew the same lines on the reverse side as well.

The middle strip is 1 inch wide, the two strips on either side of the middle are 2.25 inch wide, and the outer triangles are the amount left over, just big enough for half a charm square.

Cut your fabrics long enough to cover the length of the paper, and half an inch wider than the strip. For me, this was:
Aqua - 12.25" x 1.5"
Navy - 11" x 2.75"
Charm squares - cut in half diagonally.

Dab a bit of craft glue stick onto the middle strip (1). Lay the aqua strip right side up, with the edges evenly overlapping the drawn lines.

Press lightly to secure, then add the navy strip right side down, lining up the edges with the aqua. This will cover the (2) strip.

Glue or pin in place, then flip over and stitch using a 1.5 stitch length on the drawn line.

Repeat on the other side (3) with another navy strip. Press flat with an iron, really pushing the navy away from the aqua. Your block will now look like this:

Place a half charm right-side down, with the long edge lined up along the raw edge of the navy strip. This will cover the (4) triangle.

Glue or pin in place, then flip over and stitch using a 1.5 stitch length on the drawn line.

Repeat on the other side (5) with another half charm. Press flat again with an iron. Your fabric pieces should cover the paper foundation entirely once they have been pressed.

Take your pile of blocks over to your cutting mat, and flip one over so that the paper side is facing up. Trim away the excess fabric, not cutting any of the paper. 

Flip it back over, and you have a very precisely pieced block (which should please you immensely, if you are a bit OCD like me!).

Trim up the rest of your blocks.

Then the fun of playing with the layout can start!

Once you are ready to sew your blocks together, remove the paper from the back. It should be easy enough to do if you didn't use too much glue. And the 1.5 stitch length helps the paper to tear away. Sew the blocks with a 0.25 inch seam as normal.

I'd love to see your finished blocks (or quilts!) if you have followed these instructions, so feel free to link up!

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