Monday 21 September 2015

Farmer's Wife 1930s QAL Blocks 3 & 4: Alice and Ann

Welcome to the week two post in the year long Farmer's Wife 1930s Quilt Along.   I've been enjoying seeing your blocks, especially on Instagram.  Look at the hashtag #fw1930sqal and you'll see what I mean.  I had a brilliant suggestion from Amanda of @thepatchsmith who came up with a hashtag formula for each block #name block so this week's blocks are Alice and Ann and will be #aliceblock and #annblock.  This allows you to see not just what's going on in the quilt along but also how other pople have interpreted specific blocks.  Block 3 is Alice (p.162, letter p.85) and she's a tricky one!

Fabric credits:

Do check the errata page for this block.  The foundation paper pieced pattern is fine (although the labelling needs revising on J and K sections see errata), as is the block diagram but there are issues with the templates and you will need to use a different version than the one currently on the CD.  There are alot of small pieces in this block which is what makes it so challenging.   If you would like to English Paper Piece this block like Jo Avery of Bearpaw, do go and read this excellent post about how she is going about this.  For EPP,  I would also suggest using the block diagram for your paper pieces.  It prints out at 6" square and will provide all the pieces you need for a block in one printed sheet of paper.  This is just a screen shot so you know what to look for, it is not the correct size!

I did have to starch (I use Soak as a final spray for all my #fw1930sqal blocks) and press this block into submission after removing the paper, it was a little wavy!  As with last week's block, here are my cutting suggestions which allow around ⅜" to ½" around the seam lines for each piece so that the piece of fabric is always bigger than needed:

Foundation Paper Piecing Fabric Cutting
A2, A3, A4, B3, B4, B5, C3, C4, C5: cut (9) 1 ½"squares
A1, A5, B2, B6, C2, C6, G1, F1, H1, I1: cut (12) 1 ½" x3"
B1, B7, C1, C7, G2, F2, H2, I2: cut (2) 2 ½"squares, sub-cut each square twice diagonally to make 4 quarter square triangles, 
J1, K1, L1, M1: cut (2) 2" squares, sub-cut each square once diagonally to make 2 half square triangles
J3, K3, L3, M3: cut (4) 1 ¼" x 2 ½"
N1,O1, P1, Q1: cut (4) 1 ¾" x 2 ½"
O2,O3, N2, N3, P2,P3, Q2, Q3: I used freezer paper templates and this technique.

The order of sewing on foundation paper piecing blocks varies between having to be in numerical order to work and being up for interpretation so you may find that you would rather sew some sections in a different order.  For example on sections B and C, I would add the end triangle pieces last but it still works as it is on the pattern.  You can download a free guide to foundation paper piecing here.  For the N,O,P,Q sections I used freezer paper templates for the pieces that sit either side of the points.  First I prepare the points N1,O1, P1, Q1 by sticking the rectangle to the back of the section with a Sewline glue stick.  I then fold the pattern along the pre-creased lines and trim off the excess fabric leaving a ½" seam allowance.

I then prepare the side pieces using a freezer paper template (no seam allowances on the templates) I add ½" all round as I cut it out.

 Here's a finished section!

The message to take away from the letter this week is for mother's to not worry about cooking and cleaning but instead take time to play with the children.  My daughter is past the play stage but I do take every opportunity to share time with her- today's activity might be watching a YouTube comedy clip or baking together but I'm well away that she'll be off to uni in no time at all!  She's already bagged this quilt for when she goes.

Block four is Ann (p.163, letter p.24), Charise is guest posting on this block so scoot on over to Charise Creates to see her creation and pick up her top tips!  Here's my version.

Fabric credits:
Robert Kaufman Penny and Friends- Plaid Aloe
Kokka Lighthearted: Kitchen floral in turquoise
Kona Buttercup

  • Use the hashtags  Don't forget to use #fw1930sqal on Instagram and the Flickr group if you like to share there.  
  • You can also copy and paste links to any blog posts you do on these blocks in the comments and I'd love to visit and take a look. 
  • I'll be introducing this post on with a short broadcast  around 2.30pm GMT today and it'll be available for 24 hours to replay before it disappears! Link will be in my twitter feed @verykb and I'll post on Instagram and twitter about 15 minutes before it does out.
Please note:  I have linked to my sponsors on anything that I have bought through them and elsewhere for anything that has come from elsewhere.

And an extra bonus, I had an email from Kam of Needle Plus Thread who, with permission from the publisher, has created a free colouring sheet you can download featuring the first five blocks.  Go to her  blog for details.   I know I could've done with this for block 6, I'm on my third version!

Back next Monday with Jo and blocks 5 and 6.

sib blog


  1. Thanks for all your tips Kerry, and I love how fresh your blocks are!

  2. Your blocks are perfect. And I love all the hints and cutting suggestions. Thank you.

    p.s. Blogged about the first four blocks:

  3. Okay, so eight months later... ;-) I finished block 3!!! And I survived! I'm a little bloodied from the seam ripper, and my kids learned some new swear words, but I'm calling it a win:

    Your Ann block is gorgeous, by the way. Somehow that block gives me a great mid-century modern vibe.

  4. Slowly but surely, and better late than never: Ann Block 4 completed:


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