Flying in Squares Quilt

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Hello Moda Bake Shop fans!!!  I am so excited to be back today to share a “high flying” tutorial with you all ;)  I’m Melissa Corry and you can find me at my blog, Happy Quilting. What you might not know about me is that I have a fairly new sewing room that I painted purple!!   I love it, but I have nothing on the walls.  So when I saw Terrain by Kate Spain, I knew it was the perfect line to create my new sewing room decor.  And I am so happy to share it with all of you!!

And if you just love it and want to make your own “Flying in Squares” quilt, pop on over to Julie at The Intrepid Thread.  She has a fabulous “Flying in Squares” quilt kit with everything you need to get your own flock flying and at a great price to boot :)  Terrain is no longer available in her shop, but she has a great alternative.

To make this quilt you will need:

27 Squares from your Layer Cake – I used mostly the cool colored prints :)
1 1/2 Yards of Bella Solids White
2 Yards for Backing
1/2 Yard for Binding

One final note before we get started :)  If you have any questions about this tutorial, please email me at happyquiltingmelissa (at) gmail (dot) com.  I will answer them ASAP.  When you are finished, I would love for you to add a picture of your “Flying in Squares” quilt to my Flickr Group.  I just get giddy seeing other’s versions of my tutorials and I love to do parades on my blog of everyone’s completions :)

STEP 1 – CUTTING


Start with your 27 layer squares.  From each square cut (1) 6 1/4″ x 6 1/4″ square and (5) 3″ x 3″ squares.  You will have a little bit of scraps left.

Now let’s move on to your white yardage.  Iron your yardage first to remove any wrinkles.  Align your fabric on your mat and cut a straight edge.  Then cut 9 strips measuring 3 3/8″ x the WOF (Width of Fabric).  From each of the 9 strips cut 12 3 3/8″ x 3 3/8″ squares for a total of 108 squares.

Once again,  align your fabric on your mat and cut a straight edge.  Then cut 12 strips measuring 1 3/4″ x the WOF.  From 6 of the strips cut (12) 1 3/4″ x 13″ strips and (12) 1 3/4″ x 8″ strips.  From the remaining 6 strips cut (12) 1 3/4″ x 15 1/2″ strips and (12) 1 3/4″ x 5 1/2″ strips.



STEP 2 – MAKING A FLOCK OF GEESE


Now we are ready to start making some geese.  This is a great method of making Flying Geese that have no waste. You also aren’t sewing any triangles on along the bias which helps to keep everything nice and straight.   To save time be sure and repeat each of the sub-steps 27 times making your geese in an assembly line fashion rather than making 4 geese at a time.

With right sides together, lay two white squares onto your large print square as shown.  Using your ruler, draw a pen line diagonally from the top left corner to the bottom right corner.

Now go ahead and pin both sides of each square adjacent to that drawn line.  Make sure to put them out far enough that your presser foot won’t hit them as you sew on by :)  Now stitch a 1/4″ seam along both sides of the drawn line (the black lines represent your stitching lines :)  Remember, you are doing these assembly line so go ahead and chain stitch all 27 sets on the right hand side of the line, and then go back and do all 27 sets on the left hand side.

Go ahead and clip your threads and then align your ruler along the drawn centerline.  Cut your pieces apart along that drawn line.

Now you will want to press your seam up towards your white fabric.  Don’t these look like cute little hearts :)

Now, take 2 more white squares and align them on your two stitched pieces as follows with right sides together.  Once again, draw a diagonal line on the wrong side of the white squares from corner to corner.

Now pin each piece far enough out that your foot will go by and then once again, stitch a 1/4″ seam along both sides of the drawn diagonal line.  (Remember to chain stitch to save time :)

Clip your threads and then using your ruler aligned along the drawn line, once again, cut your 2 separate pieces apart.

Press toward the white again.  Lastly, trim off the little corners.

And you are done!!!  You should have a whole flock of geese (108) that are precisely perfect and ready to get flying!!



STEP 3 – ASSEMBLING THE FLYING BLOCK


So now we are going to start sewing those geese together.  Start by laying out 2 geese as follows.  Lay the first geese onto the second and with rights sides together pin along the edge. Pin 48 sets.  Sew a 1/4″ seam along the pinned edge. ** Hint -If you try to make sure that you sew directly over where the triangle intersects (where the 2 grey lines cross on the picture), you will get much crisper points.  Once you have finished the first set, don’t clip your threads.  Just keep feeding all 48 sets through.  This is called chain stitching and it saves tons of time.  Now go ahead and clip your threads and press.  You now should have  48 sets of double geese and 12 single geese remaining.

Now we are going to use the same process to make rows of 4 geese.  Lay your first set of 2 geese onto your second with right sides together, make 12 sets like this.  Pin your edges of all 12 sets and chain stitch a 1/4″ seam along the pinned edges, once again, making sure to cross directly over the intersection point.  Press your seams. ( Just as clarification – you will have some leftover sets of 2 geese.)

Now, grab your 12 sets of 4 flying geese you just made and 12 leftover sets of 2 and lay them out as follows.  (Really pay attention to the directional orientation; I had to do some unpicking when I was only half focusing on what I was doing :)  Lay the 2 flying geese onto the 4 with right sides together.  Take care to match up the center seam of the 2 with the point of the 4th goose :)  Pin along the seam and the edges.  Chain stitch a 1/4″ seam along the pinned edges, clip your threads, and press.  These will be your top and bottom rows and you can set these aside for a minute.

Now we need some four patches for the center of our blocks.  Start by grabbing a stack of those 3″ squares. Layout 6 sets of 4 as follows.  Now lay the sets of 2 with right sides together as follows.  Chain stitch a 1/4″ seam along all 12 sets of 2, clip your threads and press.  Now you can take the sets of 2 and lay them with right sides together to make 6 sets.  Pin along the edge taking care to match the center seam.  Chain stitch a 1/4″ seam along the pinned edge, clip your threads and press.

Now take the 6 four patches your just made and the remaining 12 sets of 2 geese and lay them out as follows making 6 sets. (Once again, really focus on the directional orientation.)  Lay the right hand set of geese onto the 4 patch with right sides together.  Take care to match the center seams.  Chain stitch a 1/4″ seam along all 6 sets.  Clip your threads and press.  Now repeat the same process with the left hand set of geese.  You will now have 6 sets of center rows.

Now your block rows are complete and you are ready to sew your blocks together.  Lay 6 blocks out as follows.  I like to layout all 6 at first so I can play with the orientation of colors and get everything the way I like it before I sew.

Lay the top row onto the center row of each of the 6 sets.  Pin, taking care to match up all of the seams.  Chain Stitch a 1/4″ seam along the pinned edge and then clip your threads and press.  Repeat the same process for the bottom row.

And you now have 6 beautiful Flying Blocks!!



STEP 4 – ASSEMBLING THE SQUARE BLOCK


Remember those remaining 12 geese? Now is the time to use them. Take 2 geese blocks and lay them out as follows.  Lay the first geese block onto the second with right sides together and pin along the edge.  Repeat this to make 6 sets.  Chain stitch a 1/4″ seam along the pinned edge, being sure to cross over the intersecting seams.  Clip your threads and press.

Now take those 6 centers you just made and you are going to add some sashing.  Start with the 5 1/2″ strips and lay them with right sides together along the sides of your center.  Chain stitch a 1/4″ seam along the left hand side of the 6 centers.  Clip your threads.  Now chain stitch a 1/4″ seam along the right hand side of the 6 centers.  Clip your threads and press both sets of seams on the 6 centers.  Then repeat the same process but on the top and bottom using the 8″ sashings.  Go ahead and set the 6 sashed centers aside.

Now grab your pile of 3″ print squares.  You will be making 12 rows of 3.  Start by taking 2 squares and with right sides together sew a 1/4″ seam along any edge. (you won’t need pins)  Repeat this 12 times chain stitching to save time.  Clip your threads between the 12 sets.  Open your sets of 2.  Now lay another 3″ square with right sides together along the edge and chain stitch a 1/4″ seam along all 12 sets to make 12 rows of 3.  Clip your threads and press.

Now you will be doing the same process as above by making 12 rows of 5.  Once again, start by making 12 sets of 2 squares and with right sides together and chain stitch a 1/4″ seam along any edge. Clip your threads.  Now add a third square to each of the 12 sets, followed by a fourth square and then a fifth square.  Clip your threads and press.

Now get your sashed centers again and your rows of 3 and 5 squares.  This process is the same as sashing before we are just using pieced sashes instead.  Lay out 6 blocks as follows.  (Once again, I like to lay them all out so I can determine orientation of color :)

Place the pieced rows of 3 onto the sides of the centers of all 6 sets and pin the edges.  Chain stitch a 1/4″ seam along the pinned edges of the right hand sides and then clip your threads and repeat chain stitching a 1/4″ seam along the pinned edges of the left hand side.  Clip your threads and press.

Now just repeat the same process for the top and bottom.  Take care when pinning to make sure to align the seams of the center block and the pieced rows.  Chain stitch your 1/4″ seams, clip your threads and press.

And now your blocks are ready for the final sashings.  Repeat the same process.  You got this!!  Attach your 13″ sashings to the sides of your block and your 15 1/2″ sashings to the top and bottom of your block.

And now you are done with your 6 Square blocks!!  Excellent!!!



STEP 5 – ASSEMBLING THE QUILT TOP


Now it is on to the super fun part and it goes really quick!!   Lay out your blocks as follows.  Notice, I changed the orientation of some of my square blocks.  You don’t have to, I just like the way it looks.  I find it helps to take a picture of my layout so I can refer back to it :)

And now we can make some rows.  Start by laying the first block in each row onto the second block with right sides together.  Pin along the edge.  You won’t have to worry about matching seams because of the sashing :)  Sew a 1/4″ seam along the pinned edges of the 4 sets.  Now just lay the third block in each row onto the now pieced together first and second block with right sides together.  Once again pin along the edge and then sew a 1/4″ seam along the pinned edge of each set.  Clip your threads and press. Now you have 4 rows!!!

Lay the first row onto the second row with right sides together and then lay the third row onto the fourth row with right sides together.  Pin along the edge taking care to match up the seams where the blocks meet.  Sew a 1/4″ seam along the pinned edge of each set.  Clip your threads and press.

Now just one more seam to sew!!  Lay your now sewn together row 1 and 2 onto your row 3 and 4.  Pin along the edge once again taking care to match up your seams.  Sew a 1/4″ seam along the pinned edge, clip your threads and press.

And there you have it!!!  Your Flying in Squares quilt top is finished!!!



STEP 6 – FINISH THE QUILT

Take your 2 yards of backing and cut it into a 1 3/4″ yard x WOF piece and then 2 4 1/2″ x 32″ pieces.  Sew them together as the layout below.

Make your quilt sandwich up.  Taping the backing down to a hard surface will really help to keep out bunching in the back of your quilt.    Baste your quilt sandwich.  (The more pins the better :)

Now go ahead and quilt.  I love this part; it is one of my favorite things to do!!  I did a new swirl pattern with some sharp points and echoing.  It was a ton of fun.  If you are new to free motion quilting just google it.  You will find lots of videos and tutorials to help you along your way :)

Lastly, make your binding strip from your 1/2 yard of fabric and attach it to your quilt.  I machine attach my bindings but you are welcome to do it by hand if you prefer.  There is a great tutorial here if you are not familiar with binding :)

I like to throw my quilt in the wash real quick when I am done so that it gets that nice soft look.  Now just sit back and enjoy!!


One super fun “Flying in Squares” quilt measuring 44″ x 60″

Melissa Corry

Melissa Corry

Melissa Corry

Blogger and Pattern Designer at Happy Quilting
By Day I am a wife and stay-at-home Mom of 5 little kiddos. By Night (and nap time) I am a quilting devotee. Happy Quilting (www.happyquiltingmelissa.com) started out as place to share my creative endeavors. Now it's grown into a pattern company. I can't wait to see where it leads me next :)
Melissa Corry

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