Welcome to Block 6 of the Fall Into a QAL, a mystery quilt along by Partners in Design.
We've reached the halfway point! Yippee!
If you'd like to quilt along with us, click here to learn more.
The sixth block in our quilt along was designed by Sherry @ Powered by Quilting and it’s a pie!
I love pie--making it, eating it. My favorite it apple pie, but I also love peach and blueberry pie in the summer and pecan and pumpkin in the fall. I just love pie!
Here’s my version of the block.
This block uses raw edge split applique and embroidery to create the pie, and simple piecing to create the background. If you’ve never used these techniques before--no worries! As a quilt along host, I’m here to help.
My Fabric Pull for This Block
I had several goals for this block. First, I wanted to make sure that the background I chose for this block complimented the other background fabrics I've already used. I decided early on that this block needed to have a yellow-green background to compliment two other blocks that used yellow-green. My thought was that I would then have three lighter blocks and three darker ones.
Second, since apple pie is my favorite and I'd used this cute apple fabric in an earlier block, I wanted to figure out some way to use it again.
Third, for the tablecloth, I wanted the fabrics I chose complimented the top section fabrics. In addition, I wanted to make sure that those fabrics maintained the light, medium and dark tones used in the original pattern so I could get that tablecloth effect.
For some reason, I focused on yellow green fabrics for the tablecloth. Looking at the block now, I wish I'd chosen reds for the tablecloth. But I do like how lovely the pie plate looks on my green tablecloth so it's all good.
Here is my fabric pull for the block.
Whenever I do a pull, I take a moment to make sure that the fabrics for this new block compliment the fabrics in the other blocks. So I always audition them together before making my final decisions.
Here are my tips for making the block:
- First, you need to print out the templates on page 3 of the pattern and check their size. Be sure to print at 100% and DO NOT scale the pattern to fit. I always measure my printout to make sure it's right. (So thankful when a designer includes a test square you can measure!)
You can print out page 4 now if you like--it contains the embroidery template so you won't need it until later if you want to wait to print it.
- I cut and pieced my upper background section exactly as instructed. For the tablecloth, I decided to use strip-piecing rather than sewing together all those squares. Strip-piecing is sometimes faster, but it may not be as accurate if you have trouble maintaining a 1/4" seam over the length of a long WOF strip. In this case though, my strips were only 7-1/2" long so no worries on whether I could maintain an accurate seam! Therefore, I figured the strip piecing method was the best for me to use for this block.
I cut two light strips, three medium, and one dark, all 2-1/2" x 7-1/2". I sewed two medium and one dark strip together to create one stripset, and two light and one medium strips together to create the other stripset.
Press each stripset towards the medium and subcut into 2-1/2" x 7-1/2" vertical strips.
Arrange the subcuts into the tablecloth pattern and sew them together. Sew the top and bottom sections together as instructed. When pressing the tablecloth section, it helps to press the seams in the opposite direction of the top section so the seams will nest when you sew the two sections together.
- With the background done, it was time to move onto the pie applique. As you know by now, I use the Crafted Applique method for my fusible applique. This method fuses the edges of your applique shapes so they won't fray. It also replaces fusible, so the steps I follow are a bit different than you would use with raw-edge fusible applique. With Crafted Applique, you don't need to stitch the edges of each shape although I do anyway because for me the shapes only seem to "fuse" to the fabric temporarily. You don't need to stitch the edges to keep them from fraying however. So I just straight-stitch the shapes down (instead of using a blanket stitch or a satin stitch) so it's easy.
The Crafted Applique method is perfect for what I did next, which was to create a lattice pie top. I'm so glad i didn't have to worry about all those edges fraying!
- When an applique shape contains a lot of pieces like this one, I like to build the shape on a Teflon pressing sheet, then move it as a solid shape onto the block background. That way, I can center the pie on the background horizontally and place it vertically on my tablecloth exactly where I want, then fuse.
Let me back up here and talk about the lattice top. I wanted to feature my apple fabric, and I originally thought that I could simply make the cut holes in the pastry a bit bigger in order to do that. No matter how I tried, it just didn't look like apples peaking out through those slits. The apples were just too big, and when they were cut small for the slits they just looked like blobs of green, yellow and red.
So after about a half hour of trying to go with slits, I finally decided I had to create a lattice pie top. I resisted this idea because I knew it would be harder to try to control the placement all those skinny strips and to edge-stitch them all down. But if I wanted to use my apple fabric this was the only way so I took a deep breath and continued on.
To create the lattice, I sketched my idea out on the template pages. Once I knew the idea would work, I cut my apple fabric and my pie plate fabric using the templates. Then I cut strips of pastry fabric 1/2" wide.
- I played with the strips for a while then finally decided the best way to approach this was to build the lattice on the apple fabric and then trim the strips to the pie filling shape. To build the lattice, I worked as I might when making a pie. First I laid out my strips in two directions, then lifted and placed strips under others as needed to get that over and under thing.
- I arranged strips along the edges of the pie filling because I liked that look. It does look pretty good though with the apple fabric along the edges too, so this was just a matter of preference.
Finally, I fused the strips down and trimmed them to the shape of the pie filling.
- Next, I fused the latticed pie top to the pie plate. Because of the curvy edge of the pastry and the fact that I wanted as much of the pie plate to show as possible, I found it a bit tricky to make sure that the pie top covered the pie plate everywhere and that there were no empty holes. If I were to do it over again, I might cut the pie plate piece a bit wider. But I don't know. It sure turned out the right size when I was done fusing!
Anyway, to make sure there weren't any holes and that the pie top covered the top edge of the pie plate, I fused the two pieces lightly and then held the pie up to the light to make sure the pie top covered the top edge of the pie bottom. The Crafted Applique method doesn't result in a permanent fuse, so I can do things like this. You might want to pin and not fuse the two pieces together so you can reposition the pie top if you spot some holes between the pie top and the top edge of the pie bottom. After I got them arranged right, I fused the pie top to the pie bottom.
- Next, I arranged the fused pie on the background. I centered it 1-5/8" from either edge horizontally, and about 3-1/2" from the bottom then fused it in place.
- Next, I stitched the edges down. Look at all those lattice edges! Oh well. I just took my time and got it done.
For my block, I used Aurifil 50 wt. #2132 (Tarnished Gold) and Sulky 40 wt. #1147 (Christmas Red) to finish the edges of my applique.
After stitching the applique down, I trimmed the block to 12-1/2".
- Next, the pattern instructs you to print out the embroidery template (page 4) if you haven't already, and to trace the steam lines onto your block background using a removable marker. My tip here is to always test your marker on a scrap of fabric before using it on a block. Believe me, you want to make sure that marker will come out! I tend to use chalk markers for that very reason, because they easily brush away.
- Use a backstitch to create the steam lines. You might do a test to see if you like 3 strands or 6 strands of floss better. Me, I've decided to stitch the steam lines later when I quilt the block so I didn't do the embroidery although I really like doing it and love the look.
- If you decide to embroider the steam lines, you might want to fuse a lightweight interfacing on the back of that area of the background to prevent puckering. If you use a wash-away interfacing, you can soak your block after stitching to remove the interfacing completely. The result is a block with a softer feel. I wouldn't use tearaway interfacing in this case because I would be afraid of tearing out my embroidery stitches. You'll find a great tutorial for stitching the steam lines on Sherry's blog (the block designer).
If you have any questions while making this block, feel free to post them here in the comments. Just be sure to enter an email address when prompted so I can get back to you quickly.
My Quilt So Far
Here are my six quilt blocks. I love how they are coming together.
Where do i get the block pattern?
Drop by Sherry's blog to download your free Pie block pattern.
Visit the other hosts if you want to see their versions of this block and gather ideas for your own version. Here are the hosts:
Abbie at Sparkle On
April at JANDA Bend Quilts
Bobbi at Snowy Days Quilting
Jennifer at The Inquiring Quilter
Karen at Tu-Na Quilts, Travels and Eats
Sherry at Powered by Quilting
Vanda at Quilting with Vanda
If you want to see the schedule for the quilt along and the list of block designers, click here.
How Do I Enter the Giveaway?
First, you must be 18 years old to enter. Then, to enter the Pie block giveaway simply make the block and post it in one of these three places before the deadline.
- On Instagram, with the hashtag #fallintoaqal
- In our private Facebook group
- To the linky on Sherry's blog post for her pie block
You have until Monday, August 6th at 11:59 pm EST to post your block for a chance to win this awesome prize package—a free pattern of your choice from Sherry @ Powered by Quilting plus four 1/2 yard cuts of Boundless Fabric Solids from Craftsy.
On Tuesday, August 7th be sure to come back here for the next block in our quilt along! You can follow me on social media or sign up for my newsletter if you’d like a reminder when the next block is posted. You’ll find all the ways to follow me at the top of my sidebar. If you have any general questions about the quilt along or would like to see the complete schedule, click the Fall into a QAL tab above.
Meanwhile, Back in My Kitchen...
I got so hungry writing this post that I had to make an apple pie! <grin> What's your favorite kind of pie?
A Special thank-you to our sponsors
The Final Grand prize package for our quilt along will be announced October 16th.