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Thursday, March 1, 2012

Garden Steps :: Assembling the Blocks

Questions? Missed a post? Find the index here.

Our next step is assembling the blocks.  According to the cutting directions, you should have four 2" strips and four 2 1/4" strips of each colored fabric and twelve 4 1/2" white/neutral blocks for embroidery.

When I piece blocks based on strips of fabric, I like to sew and then trim.  This allows for all the pieces to fit even if there is a tiny adjustment in seam allowance or a shift in placement.  So, these directions are based on that technique.  It is not necessary to cut the strips down.

For help with cutting and piecing, download the cutting diagram here.

Take two of the 2 1/4" strips, and starting at the raw edge, sew them to one of the 4 1/2" squares:

After trimming the strips, set the long portions aside.  These will be your 16" strips on another block.  Next, trim the pieces on the block to 1 3/4" wide, as shown.  Repeat with another set of 2 1/4" strips.

The next four pairs of strips will all be 2".  Continue to sew and then trim the strips in the layout as shown:

Finally, the remaining two pairs of strips are 2 1/4" wide.  As with the other strips, trim the length, but leave the strips 2" wide.  All the blocks will eventually be trimmed to the same measurements before sewing together.  This extra width is to allow for any fraying that occurs while stitching.

While it is not necessary to assemble all the blocks at once, I found it easiest to work in an assembly line fashion for my block assembly.  That way I always used one of each fabric for each piece.

Also, I arranged my fabrics in a row for each colorway and then just followed the same repeat, bumping the print to the next position each time {I hope that makes sense}.

So, that should take care of the assembly instructions.  If you have any questions, do not hesitate to ask!

Don't forget to show and tell in our Flickr Group! Did you blog about the quilt along, your fabric selection, or threads? Share your post here {please link to a specific post or Flickr photo}:


  1. Thank you, Jennie. Perfect instructions for an afternoon quilting session with a friend. Thank you!

  2. Jennie, I want to bite off more than I can imagine chewing:-). I'd like to use these blocks to make a king-sized quilt for my 25th anniversary in September. Can you help me adapt the fabric and thread requirements? Assuming I'd use sashing, should I order two whole kits?

  3. Perfect and easy to follow.Thanks so much!

  4. Hi,
    I'm Claudia,I'd like to join your "Garden steps" stitch & quilt along,
    It's too late??
    Hugs from Italy.

  5. Worked on it all day today. i've gotten it all cut and 8 of the 12 blocks made. Your directions are great.

  6. FYI-If you cut all your strips to length ahead of assembly (as I did)-the 16.5 inch strips (on the cutting diagram) actually need to be 17 inches.

    1. Suzette, I guess you're right, I hadn't thought about it because I always sew and then cut - they will technically be cut down to 16.5 in the end, hence the diagram! Sorry about that, I will update the post.


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Jennie & Clara