Welcome to the Quilting Board!

Already a member? Login above
loginabove
OR
To post questions, help other quilters and reduce advertising (like the one on your left), join our quilting community. It's free!

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 45

Thread: blocks not the same size, what to do?

  1. #1
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    71
    Blog Entries
    1

    Unhappy blocks not the same size, what to do?

    I am doing a block of the month club. Blocks of course are to be 12 1/2 finished. I am on the fourth block and just finished it. Cut everything correct but there are so many seams in this block that obviously my 1/4 seams are off. My block is measuring 12 inches or close to 12 1/8 to 12 1/4. I really do not want to make a new block, this was a difficult one. Is this going to work out OK in the end? I am a novice quilter and need your advice. Thanks everyone.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Patti25314's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    threading a needle or pulling a weed
    Posts
    483
    Wait until you get all blocks finished. Then see if you can cut all blocks down to the same size. If not, you might want to add some fabric to the edges of the smaller blocks to get them back up to right size. If you use the same fabric, the seam won't show as much where you add the fabric. Hope this helps. You are actually doing fairly well if you are 1/4 inch or less off -- lol. Try harder to keep that 1/4 inch seam. I know its hard, but a really good habit to get into.

  3. #3
    Super Member tesspug's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    California
    Posts
    1,760
    Put a tiny border on it to make it the right size and pretend you planned it that way.

  4. #4
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Long Island, New York
    Posts
    1,070
    This happend to me as well. I would move forward with the rest of the blocks, just making sure that you stay as close to your 1/4" seam as possible. Then, after you see how you have to set the blocks then you can determine where you have to make a compensation. For example: You could trim all the blocks to the same size. Or depending on your sashing (if you have one) you may be able to compensate there. You might also try blocking some of the blocks. Sometimes that can help as well. But I would not do anything until all the blocks are done and you see how they are to go together in the quilt. That will help you to determine how to correct the blocks that are off.

    Is the pattern online anywhere so that we can see what you are working on?

  5. #5
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    71
    Blog Entries
    1
    No the pattern is not online. I joined a quilting guild (neighbor convinced me to join) and one of the ladies is designing the blocks herself. I really think I have gotten in over my head. I keep thinking things will get easier as I proceed but I continue to rip out and resew as nothing ever seems to work out. Maybe quilting is not for me.

  6. #6
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Northern Michigan
    Posts
    11,173
    Blog Entries
    1
    after all of your blocks are finished measure each one- then either trim them all down to the smallest- or add narrow border/sashings to bring the all up to the largest- or you can (adjust) your setting's to bring them all up to the same size....don't stress too much until they are all done- just strive to get better with each new block- it is kind of *fun* to look at my very first one---see how the first blocks compare to the final ones & how it all compares to (now)---'i;ve come a long way baby!
    hiding away in my stash where i'm warm, safe and happy

  7. #7
    Power Poster MadQuilter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    ELVERTA, CA
    Posts
    15,178
    Blog Entries
    1
    You may be able to "block" the block by using starch and a steam iron. I have pressed some blocks into submission and pinned them to the correct size on the ironing board. Not sure what the fudge factor is though. Sometimes the only option is a do-over. Like the other comment said: Wait until all of your blocks are finished. By then you will have gotten more experience too and it may be clearer why the block is off.
    Martina
    Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Fabric!

  8. #8
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    S. Texas
    Posts
    1,928
    With only less than 1/4" difference that can easily be eased in the won't cause any problems.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Patti25314's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    threading a needle or pulling a weed
    Posts
    483
    Hang in there! I'm not kidding that you are doing really well if that is your biggest problem. You will find that as you continue to quilt, piece, whatever that you will rip out less often. Don't quit. You will be so proud when it is done.

  10. #10
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    71
    Blog Entries
    1
    Thanks so much ladies for the advice. I sure hope things start to work out better. Gets very frustrating.

  11. #11
    Super Member Cybrarian's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Tampa Bay Area, Florida
    Posts
    2,145
    Go to Utube and search "Sharon Schambers Stretching a Block" very clear and it works. She also shows how to shrink a block. These tutorials will help you solve any descrepencies in block sizing.
    Come to Me and I will give you rest--Jesus.

  12. #12
    Super Member Pat625's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    North Pole
    Posts
    1,641
    Quote Originally Posted by mommabear62 View Post
    No the pattern is not online. I joined a quilting guild (neighbor convinced me to join) and one of the ladies is designing the blocks herself. I really think I have gotten in over my head. I keep thinking things will get easier as I proceed but I continue to rip out and resew as nothing ever seems to work out. Maybe quilting is not for me.
    Don't give up!! Just enjoy the process, and all things can be adjusted when all the blocks are done. Perhaps your neighbor can help you at that point

  13. #13
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Front row
    Posts
    14,661
    Blog Entries
    2
    When I was trying to sew together a lot of swap blocks I had this very problem. I cut freezer paper the exact size the unfinished squares should be. I ironed the paper to the back of the block. I could then line up the paper instead of the block edge to sew. If the blocks were off by more then 1/4" then I took it apart and re sewed it. If it was cut to small I used the block in the backing.
    Got fabric?

  14. #14
    Senior Member happyquiltmom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    NE Indiana
    Posts
    564
    I would give them all a good press with Mary Ellen's Best Press. Sometimes, the problem isn't in the seams, but in the pressing.

  15. #15
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    dallas tx.
    Posts
    4,566
    Blog Entries
    3
    No, don't give up. If you are just 1/4 off, I would say you are almost perfect. Just read these ladies helps and you'll do just fine. It is so much fun on here, I don't get much quilting done. I read and read.

  16. #16
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Surprisingly, Staten Island NY
    Posts
    1,379
    Blog Entries
    1
    This could work really well if you use sashing and alternate block. I did a quilt set on the diagonal with sashing and alternate blocks, and it worked very well. The blocks appear to be floating. Keep going with it and don't fret about blocks already done.
    Create something beautiful from scraps.

  17. #17
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    1,807
    Blog Entries
    1
    Quote Originally Posted by tesspug View Post
    Put a tiny border on it to make it the right size and pretend you planned it that way.
    I have done this often. No one knows the original intent. As long as the colors or patterns are incorporated in the quilt elsewhere, no one would notice.

  18. #18
    Power Poster
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    MN
    Posts
    19,432
    As long as these blocks are for yourself -

    Do like the other responders said - finish the series and then worry about what to do next.

    There are a lot of ways to 'make it work' - that aren't always shown on the pattern!

  19. #19
    Super Member carolaug's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Behind my sewing machine
    Posts
    7,207
    Blog Entries
    4
    I have one quilt that I started and it was a really hard quilt...It really was turning me off from quilting...I stopped going to the class and I packed away the unfinished top..I will finish one day...I then started doing easier quilts and loved it..I have slowly been doing harder and harder ones..you may just need to put that one in the closet for a few years.

  20. #20
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Western Wisconsin
    Posts
    11,890
    Blog Entries
    1
    Sharon Schamber has some great videos on Youtube that show how to block a square to the correct size. If you search on her name there, you will find them (mixed in with a lot of other great Youtube videos she has there!).

  21. #21
    Super Member burchquilts's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Holmen, WI
    Posts
    7,330
    Quote Originally Posted by tesspug View Post
    Put a tiny border on it to make it the right size and pretend you planned it that way.
    My suggestion as well. But wait till the end & see how they all turn out. They might all need borders.
    (`v)
    `*..*
    .
    .*).*)
    (.(. (..`..♥ rebecca

  22. #22
    Junior Member Suzan88's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Greenville, Maine
    Posts
    168
    Blog Entries
    14
    Quote Originally Posted by Prism99 View Post
    Sharon Schamber has some great videos on Youtube that show how to block a square to the correct size. If you search on her name there, you will find them (mixed in with a lot of other great Youtube videos she has there!).
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sQkF02vpVuw this is the one to stretch a block

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3keKl...eature=related squaring up a block

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lIjZqABo2NY shrinking a block using starch


    Suzan
    (Maine)
    Choose to be happy

  23. #23
    Super Member Kathy T.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Tampa, FL USA
    Posts
    2,947
    If they are only 1/4 inch off then it is probably not you or your 1/4 inch. It is probably because she is giving you the exact measurements of a mathematically correct block and you need to use what is called a "scant" 1/4 inch.

    The exact figures do not take into account that ironing the seams takes up space, so your sewing line needs to be just a little bit less than 1/4 inch (hence the name "scant 1/4 inch"). If your machine lets you move the needle over, move it one or two positions to have that slightly smaller space. Don't forget to set it everytime you make one of her blocks!

    If your machine doesn't do that, you can eyeball the smaller seam by going over to the right just a tiny bit (say, two threads or so). You can still use all the blocks you've made using the methods other people have mentioned. Hope this helps.

  24. #24
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    South East, PA
    Posts
    236
    If you were swapping blocks, I would be really concerned. If these are only for you, chances are, they will all end up close to the same size, and thus, will fit together ok. As others have said, keep trying to perfect the 1/4 inch seam, and indeed, practice makes perfect... good luck! Don't give up.... can't wait to see the finished quilt

  25. #25
    Super Member Deborahlees's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Wine Country-Southern California
    Posts
    1,455
    Don't give up.....sewing/quilting/piecing is a HUGE learning curve....you are just at the beginning...I have been sewing for 60 years, quilting/piecing for 40 years....and I still will look at some thing I made 20 years ago, 10 years ago, last year and last week and be amazed at how far I have come....everyday I try to learn something new, try something new....My goal this year has been to try a new quilt pattern every month, so far so good, and with every new pattern I learn something new, I get better with a technique, I learn to do something a different way.....I especially enjoy watching, the PBS quilt shows. Quilt in a day, Eleandor Burns, Fons and Porter, even Sewing with Nancy all have something to share....How to pin, how to sew triangles, the uses of spray starch, with kinds of thread....
    My best advise is not to give up....keep at it....walk away when you get frustrated, time for a glass of wine....
    Don't worry so much about ripping things out....just move on or do another one....
    But keep on plugging along

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

SEO by vBSEO ©2011, Crawlability, Inc.