Joining Blocks & Rows: Slick Trick!
I finished piecing this long-term project last week. It’s a traditional Burgoyne Surrounded design, but it was reimagined by Lissa Alexander and published in American Patchwork & Quilting.
I’ve been working on it at retreats for the past couple of years. I’m really pleased with how it turned out, and I used up a lot of light neutral background fabric. The top is 75″ x 90″.
On a quilt of this size, I don’t like sewing the blocks and the sashing pieces into long rows. There are a couple of reasons. The first is that when you have a very long strip of patchwork, it practically turns into an accordion. These things are s-t-r-e-t-c-h-y. Stretchy is not good.
Another reason is that if you have to fudge anything, like easing in some fullness, it’s much easier to do it with just a block or two than with an entire row. So here’s how I assembled this quilt top in order to avoid these pitfalls.
I sewed a sashing strip to the right side of each block, as shown above. Then I joined one of the Nine Patch corner stones to each sashing strip that went below a block, as shown below.
This strip was sewn to the bottom of each block.
So in effect, I was just creating new blocks by adding sashing to the right side and the bottom of each one.
Of course you have to add sashing to the left side of each far left block, and you must add sashing and cornerstones to the top of all the blocks in the top row.
From there it’s easy to sew the blocks together into pairs, and so on. Pretty soon the top is together and you’ve avoided all the stretchy nonsense of long rows. Slick trick!
Here’s a link to get the pattern. I’m not affiliated but I do think it’s smashing.