Friday, June 20, 2014

The Easiest Pinwheel Block You Will Ever Make - PERIOD!

In the past when I have made pinwheels I have made them the traditional way but I just learned a new method, at least it is new to me, to make pinwheels and it is super fast and SEW easy!  Pinwheels are a very traditional quilt block to make and I love how they look so I am going to try my hand at this new process and see how they look.  In a few weeks I am going to show you how to do the Disappearing Pinwheel quilt block and that one is really easy and quick too - but for now, on to the Pinwheel Quilt Block!

Don't forget to wash and press your fabric before starting any quilting project.  This assures that all your cuts and seams will be even and straight so that when you are all done, everything lines up perfectly!  

To start this quilt you are going to need squares that are 5" X 5" in a few different colors or if you want this to be even easier you can use Charm Packs (squares that are pre-cut in 5" X 5" squares and packaged in batches) that you can purchase from any fabric store or Walmart has them as well.  They usually come with several different fabric patterns so you can make something really colorful and fun.  At Walmart they run about $7.99 per pack of 32.

Take one of your patterned blocks and lay it face up with a

solid block laying face down on top.  I have some here that have the edges pinked (that zig zaggy edge) and my solid color blocks are exactly 5" X 5".  When I sewed my seams, I measured by the white block since I knew its edges were exact.

Sew a 1/4" seam all the way around the two blocks

YIKES!  Don't look at how dusty and dirty my sewing machine is.  I will clean it right after I finish these blocks.

pivoting at the corners.

This is how it should look.

Place your quilting ruler diagonally on the block from corner to corner on the block you have just sewn the 1/4" seam all the way around on and cut all the way through from corner to corner.

Leaving the two pieces together on your cutting board, place your ruler on top going the other direction and cut right down the center again from corner to corner.

This is what you now have.

Take the four triangles you now have to your ironing board and set the seams by pressing flat and then pressing them open.

Do this with each triangle.  When setting your seams and pressing them, always press toward the dark side (no, this is not a Star Wars reference) like the picture above.

Lay the 4 squares out now into your pinwheel pattern by placing them in a box shape with the opposite colors touching like the picture above.

Pick up the top two squares and put them faces together and match up the seams so that they are nested together.

Sew the top 2 squares together by sewing a 1/4" seam down the side.

Then do the same with the 2 bottom squares using a 1/4" seam.

Take your top and bottom pieces and press the seams to opposite sides.  Now you are going to sew the top and bottom rows together using a 1/4" seam by putting them faces together and nesting the seams.

This is what your blocks will look like and it will take you just a few minutes to put one together.  Isn't this one so cute?

Here are my first 8 blocks and I am so happy with the way they turned out.  Now I just need to put together the other 24 blocks and then I will be ready to show you how I put the whole quilt together.  But that is for another post.

If you have experience in sewing pinwheels, I would love to hear from you.  Are you already using this method or do you prefer the traditional way?  If you haven't tried these yet, you must!  They are really fun to make.

Happy Sewing!

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