Monday, 16 November 2015

Farmer's Wife QAL Blocks 19 & 20: Carolina and Caroline

Week 9 in the  Farmer's Wife 1930s Quilt Along   and with blocks 19 and 20 completed, we are just over a fifth of the way- or 20% if you prefer- of completing the 99 blocks.  Block 19, Carolina (p.178, letter p.74) is the trickiest yet and Jo Avery of My Bear Paw is back sharing her english paper piecing techniques on this block.  Read all about it here and do check the letter out for this block, it's an enjoyable read.  I paper pieced Carolina- there were 8 Y-seams in all and a seam picker came out once or twice. You can find Y-seam tutorials here and here

Fabric credits:

Block 20 is Caroline (p. 179, letter p.60).  This block comes out in mirror image to the photograph if you paper piece the block using the pattern on the CD.  I contacted Laurie Aaron Hird about this a few weeks back and she is always quick to get in touch with the editorial team.  It is something they will comment on the next  time the book  goes to print so piecers know what to expect.  It doesn't make a huge visual difference to the final block, but it can be a bit confusing if you piece looking at the photograph!  As usual, I precut all my pieces before foundation piecing each section and for this block I rotary cut larger than needed triangles throughout. 

Fabric credits:
Polka dot floral- Japanese fabric (by Kei?)
Kona Mango
Kona Violet

Rotary Cutting for Foundation Paper Piecing
A6, B5, C6, D5: cut (1) 5" squares, sub-cut each across both diagonals to make 4 quarter-square triangles 
A5, B6, C5, D6: as above in other colour
A1, A3, B1, B3, C1, C3, D1, D3: cut (4) 3" squares. Sub-cut each once diagonally to make 2 half square triangles from each square.
A2, B2, C2, D2: cut (2) 3" squares. Sub-cut each once diagonally to make 2 half square triangles from each square.
A4, B4, C4, D4: cut (2) 3" squares. Sub-cut each once diagonally to make 2 half square triangles from each square.

Top tips for this block.
  • Use a water based glue stick- I use Sewline- to stick the first piece of each section
  • Don't chain piece!  Work on each section until it is complete, then start the next section.
  • To make joining the sections together, I only sewed to the seam lines where all the points gather to make the pinwheels.  Then, when the A and B sections are joined together, I sew this in two halves rather than one seam.  I start at the point where the seams join and sew outwards and then repeat the other way- see the arrow on the left photo for the starting point.   This means you can swirl the seams which reduces bulk.  You can also see in the pictures how I remove some of the paper before sewing the joining seams and I draw on the seam allowance for extra accuracy
Remember you can:
  • Use the hashtags  Don't forget to use #fw1930sqal on Instagram and the Flickr group if you like to share there.  
  • For individual blocks, you can use #carolinablock and #carolineblock on Instagram. are using these hash tags, #fw19carolina,  #fw20caroline, I'm using both hashtag systems.
  • 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. 
  • Watch and join in on Periscope.  I'll be talking about Y seams for Carolina and swirling seams for Caroline on at 2.30pm GMT today.  It will 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 goes out.  
Please note:  I have linked to my sponsors on items bought through them and elsewhere for anything that has come from other shops.

You can join the quilt-along at any time, all the posts are here for you to catch up with.  Back next Monday with Charise and blocks 21 and 22.   

sib blog


  1. Carolina is a real tricky block. I have had one attempt at paper-piecing it and will try again. I might combine paper-piecing and hand stitching. Your blocks came out perfectly (as always). Thank you for the links and tips.

  2. Water based glue stick going on my shopping list today - I resorted to pritt stick last week and that didn't go so well, so sticky the paper won't come off!

  3. When I read about those y-seams I am very pleased I am EPPing my blocks! Even if I am 10 blocks behind... Lovely blocks as always Kerry :)

  4. Lovely fussy cutting on your Carolina block and the colours go together really well :)


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