Monday, April 16, 2007

9 Patch Puzzle

Several of you have asked about this block. I have several photos - hope I can do it in one post.

Start with 2 9-patches, 6 1/2 in. raw. One positive (5/4) and one negative 4/5. Use one light and one dark, with high contrast.

Orient them on the diagonal, and add corners. I cut 2 light 6 1/2 in. squares on diagonal, and 2 dark 6 1/2 in. squares on diagonal. Sew to opposite sides. This is slightly oversized. Press to the outside but do not trim.

Again, orient them with the 9-patch on the diagonal, with dark corner on each to upper left. Keep them in same position, i.e., 5/4 on left, 4/5 on right.

Carefully, lay ruler on the vertical of each block, and cut. Be exact as possible.

Take right half of each block and exchange with the other. Keep them in same orientation.

Sew together, matching seams, then press that seam open. Use care because these seams are on the bias. You will lose the points - do not fear!

Reorient them back to the 5/4 on left, 4/5 on right with the new seam vertical.

Can you guess next - yep! Lay ruler on horizontal and cut. Again, be exact as possible. Take the top half of each block and exchange with the bottom half ot the other.

Sew together, press that seam open. There will be some bulk - you can trim away some of the 'snibbles' if you like.

OK, NOW you can trim. I left 1/2 inch seam allowance on each corner, so it 'floats'. Yes, there are some 'snibbles left - if that bothers you, trim closer.

Now, instead of slicing vertically and horizontally, I think you could slice diagonally! I've not done it in these examples, but what the hey! Will it work? If you do it on the diagonal, send me a photo! That's how the 'bars' showed up on my friend Sydney's quilt (the blue one, with the cat).

If you make a bunch of these blocks, it is easy to get mixed up. That's why I was careful to make 2 stacks during the process, and keep them oriented the same way.

9 comments:

Finn said...

What a great block Elaine! Thank you for such excellent detailed instructions.
I'm not sure it's one I would do, but it is fascinating to see what can be accomplished with a little thinking cap time and a ruler..*VBS* Hugs, Finn

Patti said...

Thanks for the excellent tutorial! I'm very eager to give this a try. Similar to the "slice and dice" things Nancy Brennan Daniels does in that you are cutting up a nine patch. But yours has extra parts because of the corners and diagonal orientation. Well done!

Fiona said...

This looks intriguing, thanks for the instructions.

Carol said...

That is just an amazing block...thank you so much.

joyce said...

Thanks for the great tutorial. I may be trying this one day when I get some other things finished.

Su Bee said...

Rats! I'm at work but I really want to try this NOW!! LOL -- Thanks for a super tutorial!

paula, the quilter said...

Phooey! I, too, am at work and want to try it NOW. Guess I'll have to be patient. Thanks for a great tutorial.

Su Bee said...

(4/26/2007)
Yaaa!! -- I did it, and how cool is this??? And it goes pretty quickly. I found that I can use 6" squares for the corners and still have enough to trim, plus I can get 1 more square from a WOF strip. Pressing that center seam open was the worst part - what a fun block! Will post pics later.....

Feeling Simply Quilty said...

That another reason I like quilting. It's the latent construction engineer in us all! Deep down we are all design and construction engineers-I just never went to school for it. I wish I did!