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2015 Fabri-Quilt Challenge – Ball of Summer Love² – Block Hop & Quilt Tutorials

Ball of Summer Love²

2015 Fabri-Quilt Challenge – Ball of Summer Love² – Block Hop & Quilt Tutorials

Fabri-Quilt challenged as a group of Quilt Bloggers to each create an unique quilt block with Fabri-Quilt’s Prairie Cloth Solids.  The Prairie Cloth Solid Colors by Fabric-Quilt were selected from the Watermelon Summer Palette to include these colors:

Fabric Quilt Prairie Solids of Aqua, Chartreuse, Lapis Blue, Pale Aqua and Coral. The colors themselves represent Summer!
Fabric Quilt Prairie Solids of Aqua, Chartreuse, Lapis Blue, Pale Aqua and Coral. The colors themselves say Summer!

I wanted to create something playful bringing back memories of Summer Love and the Ball of Fun we had in our younger years.  These simple quilt blocks with colors, arrangement, design and placement express this!  I love the “plus” + sign quilts with the different meanings they can have.  Summer is a time of daydreaming and doodling our name + summer love written everywhere.

Let’s break the Ball of Summer Love² Quilt into patterns:

Ball of Summer Love²

Ball of Summer Love² with Chartreuse & Lapis Blue to Represent the Guys
Ball of Summer Love² with Chartreuse & Lapis Blue to Represent the Guys
Ball of Summer Love² with Turquoise & Coral to Represent the Gals
Ball of Summer Love² with Turquoise & Coral to Represent the Gals

Do you remember the songs we would sing with our friends of “Two Love Birds Sitting in A Tree, K – I – S – ….”, when learning of someone’s summer crush?  Wasn’t our summer daydreaming simple and narrow?  We didn’t know it then, but later in life, our thoughts would never be as simple as the daydreaming of a young summer crushes.  I love this quilt because it represents those simple, strong, playfulness with summer colors, the “plus sign” gently swooping into form and a center square with memories solidly put.  I feel many memories fading away but memories and feelings of summer love are so vivid.  Why is that?

Notice that this 12 1/2 inch block pattern is really only four  6 1/2 inch blocks rearranged. Do you recognize the basic design of the block now?

Summer Love Squared Chart Blue
Guy Basic Block Ball of Summer Love² with Chartreuse & Lapis Blue
Summer Love Squared Coral Torqu Cherry Block
Gal Basic Block Ball of Summer Love² with Turquoise & Coral

 

The block is very similar to a drunken path quilt block.  This classic block updated in this pattern with modern fabrics, colors and a triangle sewn in the corner.  Now if you look carefully you will see that the Pale Aqua triangles differ in size between the blocks with the Fabric-Quilt Prairie Solids of Coral and Lapis Blue.  I didn’t want to be difficult and you can choose to make the triangles all the same but I love how the different sized squares in the Coral and Lapis Blue Plus Signs are more pronounced.

Ball of Summer Love²
Ball of Summer Love² Notice the Colorful Summer Balls Bouncing on the Quilt

 

Don’t forget to notice the bright summer balls playfully bouncing on the quilt separating those plus signs.   You will notice their formation when looking at the quilt in the alternating blocks constructed by the design.   Some of us might recognize the summer balls pattern from a Snowball Quilt Block.

Summer Bouncing Balls form by the alternating contrasting pattern created when combining the blocks
Summer Bouncing Balls form by the alternating contrasting pattern created when combining the blocks

Now let’s get down to learning how to build the quilt block.  I have all the patterns included in this tutorial for you to complete the block at home.

Instructions

Download and review the PDF file for the Ball of Summer Love² Quilt Blocks. We will use Guy Block Sheets and Gal Block Sheets for these instructions. Print on regular paper or a light cardstock.

  1. 1 pattern sheets of the Guy Block Sheet 1 Paper Piecing
  2. 1 pattern sheets of the Gal Block Sheet 1 Paper Piecing

Fabric Needed:

  • Fabri-Quilt Prairie Solids – Turquoise
  • Fabri-Quilt Prairie Solids – Chartreuse
  • Fabri-Quilt Prairie Solids – Lapis Blue
  • Fabri-Quilt Prairie Solids – Pale Aqua
  • Fabri-Quilt Prairie Solids – Coral

Remember we will construct two different blocks: Guy Block with Lapis Blue and Chartreuse with the larger Pale Aqua triangle.  Gal Block with coral and turquoise with the smaller Pale Aqua triangle.  Don’t forget that the triangles that make the center square in the Lapis Blue Block are larger than in the Coral Block.  Cut and piece your fabrics keeping this in mind.

Lets Get Started - Get Out All Your Supplies
Lets Get Started – Get Out All Your Supplies

Cutting the Fabric

Cut the fabric as outlined below keeping the Guy Block Fabric separated from the Gal Block Fabric

  • Guy Block Group:
    1. Cut 5 inch strip of Fabri-Quilt Prairie Solids – Chartreuse
      • Cut the ¼ circle pattern – You will need 4 – ¼ circles for each block you want to make.
    2. Cut 5 inch strip of Fabri-Quilt Prairie Solids – Lapis Blue
      • Cut the Guy Block Main Pattern – You will need 4 Block Main pieces for each block you want to make.
    3. Cut 4 inch strip Fabri-Quilt Prairie Solids – Pale Aqua
      • Cut the 4 inch strip into 4″ squares. Cut square on the diagonal to create 2 triangle. – You will need 4 triangles for every block you want to make.
  • Gal Block Group:
    • Cut a 4.5 inch strip of Fabri-Quilt Prairie Solids – Turquoise
      • Cut the ¼ circle pattern – You will need 4 – ¼ circles for each block you want to make.
    • Cut a 5 inch strip of Fabri-Quilt Prairie Solids – Coral
      • Cut the Gal Main Pattern – You will need 4 Block Main pieces for each block you want to make.
    • Cut a 3 inch strip of Fabri-Quilt Prairie Solids – Pale Aqua
      • Cut the 4 inch strip into 4 inch squares. Cut square on the diagonal to create 2 triangle. – You will need 4 triangles for every block you want to make.

 

Cut Pieces Organized and Set Aside
Cut Pieces Organized and Set Aside

 

Now let’s get to stitching…. if you have never done curved piecing then are going to absolutely LOVE trying out this method! I have photographs and video along with helpful instructions to get you going at it!

Here are our cut pieces ready to stitch the first block.
Here are our cut pieces ready to stitch the first block.

There isn’t a right or wrong side to the Fabri-Quilt Prairie Solids so that will make our piecing easier.

Let’s start with the Guy Block:

  • Please refer to the pictures.
  • I am sewing with a blue Aurifil 50 weight 100% cotton thread to piece this block together from the Happy Colors by Bee in My Bonnet Collection color number 2725 available at the Stitches Quilting Shoppe.
  • If you are new to curved piecing, set your stitch length to 3.5 or 4.0 for the first couple times piecing these curved pieces together. That way if you don’t get it right then you can unstitch it and try it again. The Fabri-Quilt Prairie Cloth Solids hold up really well so it can take a few different times of unpicking a block and restitching it back together again. You need to get the rhythm of it and then you will be string feeding them together. You will be surprised at how fast you can put these together.
  • Carefully snip the seam allowance on ¼ circle rounded side, this will allow the fabric to naturally follow with the reverse curvature of the main block. 
You will start stitching the curved pieces together like this.
You will start stitching the curved pieces together like this.
Summer Love Squared Stitching of Curved Quilt Pieces B
Keep pulling the lime green fabric to match the curved blue fabric.
Here we are almost finished stitching the curved pieces.
Here we are almost finished stitching the curved pieces.
For those of you that have sewed sleeves doesn't this look like a sleeve just stitched
For those of you that have sewed sleeves doesn’t this look like a sleeve just stitched?
  • Press open the two fabrics folding the Chartreuse fabric open.  Isn’t it just beautiful!   If you didn’t get it just right you can try again if this is your first time piecing curves together.  You may find that the fabric will lay flatter with the curve if you add a few more snips in the seam allowance so it can stretch to match the curvature of the seam.  Lovely isn’t it!
  • Now stitch the Pale Aqua large Guy Triangle onto the Main Guy Block Pieces with a ¼” seam. Press the basic block and set aside.
  • Continue to piece three more Guy Blocks exactly as instructed above. 
Square up each of your basic blocks before sewing together
Square up each of your basic blocks before sewing together
  • Square up the 4 Guy Blocks to 6.5 inches square using your mat board, rotary cutter and ruler. You can use a square ruler or just your regular ruler. Keep in mind while squaring up the block that you want proportion around the entire block. This is a very important step to insure that you are going to match your seams as you piece the 4 blocks together to make the 12.5 finished square block. If the blocks are less than a 6.5 inch block then mark the block with a safety pin, pin, sticky note in the corner or edge that is falling short to compensate for it as you are stitching the 4 blocks together to form the larger 12.5 inch block. Don’t get discouraged just move forward with any mistake as you can work with it and spin out a fantastic project. The key is to stay consistent with your ¼ inch seam when putting any block piece together.

Summer Love Squared 4 Blocks ready to stitch together

  • Let’s piece the four blocks into one large block rotating them in the position we want with the Light Agua triangles in the center to create a square.  Make certain to match your seams to make each design in the block to work. It is better to stretch the cotton fabric a bit than to not match a seam. You will be surprised at how stretchy cotton fabric really is.

Summer Love Squared 4 Blocks Stitch 1st 2 match seams

  • First start with stitching the top two blocks A and B in the first row together while matching your seams. Second stitch the blocks A & B of the second row together while matching your seams. After stitching press the blocks assembled. Stitch the top row and the bottom row together to get the complete Guy Block constructed and press once again.

Summer Love Squared 4 Blocks now stitch 2 rows GalSummer Love Squared 4 Blocks now stitch 2 rowsSummer Love Squared 4 Blocks All Stitched

  • Look back and enjoy your block. Isn’t it just beautiful! Don’t forget to square your block up once again making the final Guy or Gal block to be 12 1/2 inches square.

Refer to the pictures and video instruction for anything that isn’t quite clear and please let me know where the pattern instructions might need clarification so I can improve the pattern and become a better pattern writer. Please include feedback, tips for other or inspiration in the comments below.

Next Let’s create the Gal Block with Coral & Turquoise colors

  • Follow the same instructions for the Guy Block to complete the Gal Block keeping in mind that you are using Carol and Turquoise Fabrics instead of the Lapis Blue and Chartreuse. Create the four coral basic blocks to make the large Gal Block of 12 1/2 inch square block.
Look at our finished blocks! Marveling that it all came from one simple block design.
Look at our finished blocks! Marveling that it all came from one simple block design.

EXTRA

To complete the quilt as designed above build 6 total 12 1/2 inch Guy blocks and 6 total 12 1/2 inch Gal blocks. Piece the blocks as arranged in the quilt image.

I’m planning on making a summer tote bag by constructing four of the blocks together and will do a tutorial next week for the summer tote bag construction.

THOUGHTS

This therapeutic quilting activity is another way than “luminosity” to rustle old memories from the cob webs in your brain to the forefront.  Journal these thoughts of summer memories to take you back to those careless days.   Take time while you are quilting to jot down those old memories or even look around for old photographs; your children and grandchildren will love it!

Comment below and let me know the memories that come back to you and what you think of the simple design and construction of the quilts.  How would you construct it differently?

Summer in Winter web

I’m very grateful to the gals that organized this Fabri-Quilt Blog Hop!  The blocks designed for this Blog Hop are utterly incredible!  You will find yourself mindlessly surfing the world wide web reviewing the unique modern quilting blocks with free tutorials from the talented group of 60+Quilt Bloggers coming to you literally from around the world.

Below are the organizers of this Blog Hop that worked extremely hard to bring you the best!  These creative blocks are mailed off to our fearless hosts constructed into charity quilts.

Deanna Stitching Through Life

You will be able to find Quilt Bloggers that participated in this Fabri-Quilt Challenge and their blocks along with free instruction on the four hosts pages:

Monday, August 31st Host – Yvonne @Quilting Jetgirl

Tuesday, September 1st Host – Cheryl @Meadow Mist Designs

Wednesday, September 2nd Host – Stephane @Late Night Quilter

Thursday, September 3rd Host – Terri Ann @Childlike Fascination

Thanks again to our generous sponsor, Fabri-Quilt and the Inspired by Fabric Blog.

    3 thoughts on “2015 Fabri-Quilt Challenge – Ball of Summer Love² – Block Hop & Quilt Tutorials

      1. I really like your block but I can not find a pdf download for this pattern. I would like to be able to get the template for this block. Is there any way to get a copy of it. Thanks Margaret

    1. Hi Deanna,

      I’m a huge fan of your blog and I just wanted to let you know I have nominated you for a Liebster Award. You can find my post here: http://www.offthesidewalk.com/about-us/awards/

      Keep up the awesome work!

      Carlyn | http://www.offthesidewalk.com/

    What are your thoughts?