January 2007

Depression Block

For our block of the month for January, 2007, we'll do a traditional 16 patch block, made with all half square triangles, named the 'Depression Block'.

The unfinished size of our blocks will be 12½ inches square.

Let's choose cream, beige, off white, pale tan prints or solids for our light triangles, like my example to the left, and darker small scale prints or solids for our deeper toned triangles.

Marcia, at www.quilterscache.com has written some good directions for doing this block. Here's the link to go directly to her instructions:


You'll need 3 and 7/8 squares if you want to make two identical half square triangles at a time. I actually cut 4 inch squares, draw a solid diagonal cutting line, and stitch on the dotted lines. Then, after I cut and press, I trim the new half square triangles to exactly 3½ inches square.

If I planned to make lots of this block, I'd make some paper patterns like the one to the right, connect several together into a grid, then on a copier, make large pages to pin to larger pieces of fabric and sew through the paper. I'm more accurate that way, and it seems to go faster too.

Marcia always does a sample quilt on quilter's cache for you to see, plus there's usually some links to pictures that people have sent in of quilts they have made, on page two.

For the quilt design on the left, I combined 18 depression blocks with a traditional star block.

I was really enjoing playing with my EQ software, so there's even more designs using the depression block on my blog:

Jane's blog

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