Sunday, May 18, 2014

Tutorial - Sashing Your Blocks and Assembling Your Quilt Top

In this tutorial, we will learn how to sash our blocks for this quilt.

I love me some Kona Cotton!!!  We will use 2 1/2 inch strips for our sashing...why?  because you can buy them precut in a jelly roll if you like and save time, or you can buy by the yard and cut your own.  It's a standard size and easy to work with.  If you want more space between your blocks...use a wider sashing strip.

For this quilt top, I have used 15 strips.

Take a strip and sew it using a 1/4 inch seam to one of the shadow sides of your block. can cut strips to fit your block, or you can feed them one after another onto your strip as you sew and cut them apart after, which is what I like to do.  Don't butt them right up against each other, leave about 1/2 inch between blocks. You will be able to get three blocks to a strip.  

When you have stitched one side on all your blocks, press them open with the seam toward your shadow. Trim any excess fabric even with your blocks. Stack them all the same way, next to your machine and do the same for the remaining side of your shadowed block, as shown below.  Your block should look like it has 2 "L" shapes on one side of it.

Again, press toward the shadow.

Now, lay out your blocks in a way that is pleasing to you, stand back and take a may want to switch some.  Make sure that your shadow is falling the same way for all of your blocks!

If you have a camera, take a picture of your layout.  Sometimes, things will pop out at you in a photo that you don't see with your natural eyes.  This is the time to change it up, before you start sewing.  If you are happy with the layout, proceed.

Now we will sew our blocks into rows as shown below.

Be careful as you are transferring your blocks to your machine to sew that you are not rotating them, keep all your shadows in the same direction.  Now we will stitch our rows together and our quilt top will almost be finished!  Oooooh!  You can see the illusion of the blocks floating above the background!  Isn't that fun?!

We need to stitch two lengths of background fabric to the two remaining sides.  To do this, you will need to piece two strips together for each side as they will not be long enough on their own.

Again, using a 1/4 inch seam allowance, stitch your strips to your sides and you are ready to start thinking about borders!

At this point, your quilt top will measure 56" x 56".  You can add borders to fill it out to the size you would like.  My suggestion is that you audition possible borders, think about the fact that the drop shadow design in this quilt is really the focus.

Next in this quilt tutorial will be the borders.


  1. Ok this is so great! Love the blocks and top, but what I most like is how you sashed. I have done the 'dumb' way by trying to match next row of blocks so they aren't 'off'. This is so much better!

  2. Absolutely brilliant. So clearly written. Thank you.