Friday, October 31, 2014

Peace and Plenty Potholder

I work part time at my local quilt shop (Threads That Bind) and as part of what I do to help keep our customers engaged and coming into our shop I have been designing free block of the month projects.  I've done a 6 month series and a 5 month series and have a year long project in mind to start in January.  Since we had a few months before the end of the year I decided to do a few stand along blocks/projects.  This is my November project - a Pot Holder!

I did a bit of browsing, looking for a block that was a little different, but something that would represent the Thanksgiving season.  I found this block, called Peace and Plenty and thought it would be quite suitable for my project.  The nice thing is that for this project you can use charm squares, leftover jelly roll strips or scraps!

The technique I use for the half square triangles and the flying geese is a sew and flip technique.  This does waste a little bit of fabric, but the results are so reliable that it is well worth throwing away a scrap of fabric.  Or you could make more half square triangles out of those leftover bits and make a tiny block to match your pot holder....

Here is how I do this technique:  First you need to mark the back of one of your squares.  You can use a ruler and pencil to mark a diagonal line

 That's a very faint line!  You can mark it darker than that if needed.
 Or carefully finger press a diagonal crease in your square.
 Be careful not to stretch your block, because this is the stretchy bias grain.
 Now layer up your squares and sew that diagonal seam right on your line.  I like to chain them up in a row to save time.
 Then trim them up while they are still attached to each other.
 Press the seam toward the dark and you have a nice half square triangle.
 Double check the size to make sure it is correct!
 I chain stitched all the leftover pieces together, then pressed them -
 They measure 1 3/4 inches!  If you sew them in a four by four block, it will be 5 inches square and very cute!
 Now for the flying geese blocks.  Mark your 2 1/2 square for the left side and place it like so:
 Stitch your seam and trim 1/4 inch away (always trim the corner side!)
 Press out toward the corner.  Mark the right corner square
 Sew and trim...
 Press out toward the corner.  Voila!  A perfect flying goose block...
 Look how cute this version of my block is!  The fabric is from a Bobbins and Bits Charm Pack (designed by Pat Sloan)  Love the colors!

The Peace and Plenty Pot Holder pattern and instructions are available here.  

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