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Thread: What does finished/unfinished block mean?

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2010

    What does finished/unfinished block mean?


    I am looking at a pattern and it says the blocks are 3 1/2" finished..what does that mean? Does it mean that when they are sewn all together it will be a 3 1/2" square?

    What is the difference when the pattern calls for unfinished or finished?? Confused! JC

  2. #2
    Senior Member emc1118's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    New York
    When you sew the blocks together, individually they will be 4 inches. When the blocks are sewn together to make your quilt, when all 4 sides of the block are sewn, it will measure 3 1/2.
    Unfinished is the size of the block before the blocks are sewn together.
    Finished is the size when all four sides have something sewn to it. (Quilters seam is 1/4 inch, so the block would lose 1/4 inch around or 1/2 for top and bottom, and 1/2 for the 2 sides.)

  3. #3
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    'Unfinished' size is the size block/strip we start with, 'finished' is the size that you see when your project is complete.

    If you start with 2.5 inch strip and make a 4 patch, the patches will be 2 inches when finished in your project.

    Most patterns tell you to cut the 'unfinished' size.

  4. #4
    Super Member soccertxi's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Glendale AZ
    if it says 3 1/2 inches unfinished, this is what it will be after you have pieced the BLOCK. When you sew it to the other blocks, it will be 3 inches..1/4 inch on each side for seam allowance. They tell you this , as an unfinished measurement, so you can keep track of your size as you are piecing. If you have a problem you can work it out SMALL, instead of doing a big block and having BIGGER problems!
    Beth in AZ
    Innova 22' with Lightning Stitch and Pantovision
    Keep away from people who belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you too can become great. Mark Twain

  5. #5
    Power Poster nativetexan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    home again, after 27 yrs!
    Blog Entries
    yep, unfinished always includes the seam allowances. when sewn into a quilt, the blocks will be 3 inches.

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