Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Tip Tuesday! - Charming Star Tutorial

Welcome to
"Tip Tuesday!" - Charming Star Tutorial

I love learning new things and then sharing that knowledge with my quilting friends. So, every Tuesday I'll provide some tips, hints, tricks, tutorials, shortcuts, etc. that I've learned over the years and share them here on the blog. 

"Tip Tuesday" will be a collection of information about a wide variety of subjects garnered from a large variety of sources.  I am not an expert by any means and do not take credit for being the great wizard behind all of these hints and tips. I will gladly give due credit whenever possible.

These tips will be archived and accessible to you just by clicking on the "Tip Tuesday" tab above. 

Read, enjoy, and be inspired! 

As promised, I'm posting a tutorial on a simply pieced star block. This is another stress-free block that I just love and I've called it Charming Star.

I like that fact that this block can be made using 5" squares, but I especially like that the points of the star "float" and the unfinished block is 13.5". Now, if need or want a block to finish 12", you're probably thinking that this block is too big, right? Well, here's the secret. Since the points "float," this block can easily be trimmed to 12.5" unfinished and you won't be cutting off the points. Yippee!!

In case you don't understand what I'm saying, I'm sure that the pictures (many, many pictures) in this tutorial will help you visualize it. :-) 

Let's make the Charming Star!

You'll need 4 identical charm squares for the background (pink), 4 identical charm squares for the star points (white print), 1 charm square for the star center (green), and 8 - 3 1/2" squares of the background fabric (pink)

You'll be making a nine patch block that looks like this. (You guessed it. This starts as a disappearing nine patch block!)

Press all seams open.

I never used to press my seams open, but I've been doing it quite a bit lately, and I have to say that I like it. It reduces bulk and with careful pinning, it is very accurate.

Once you have the nine patch block all pieced and pressed, cut it in half, both directions. You will have four quarter blocks that look like this. They should each measure 7".

Mark a diagonal line on all of the 3 1/2" background squares.

Diagonally sew a 3 1/2" square to each outside edge of the quarter units that were cut earlier. Sew directly on the line that you drew earlier. See the next couple of pictures to be sure that the orientation is correct.

Trim 1/4" from each sewn seam and press the seams open and out to the corners. Sew and trim all four quarter units.

You should have four quarter units that look like the picture below. 

Lay out the four quarter units to form a star.

Sew the sections together, paying particular attention to the intersections of the star points. Pinning will make matching the points easy.

Voila! You've just sewn a star block using 5" charm squares!

Do you notice the "floating" star points?

This block is 13.5" unfinished (13" finished). If that size is too big, you can easily trim the block down. See the picture below for how to trim this block to 12.5" unfinished.  

Line up the 1/4" mark of your ruler to the tips of the star points. Cutting here will reduce the size and also make it easy to match points 

Here are a couple of quilt tops made using this star pattern. As you can see, I really like the floating stars.

I'm playing around with mix and match block units coming together. So far I like the idea of changing up the center blocks, but I can't share a picture just yet because the one I have it too blurry. I'm thinking about adding a sashing to see what that looks like, and of course I can always add borders.

I can see lots of potential with this block and these quilts!

I hope you enjoyed the tutorial and please feel free to contact me if you have any questions.

Have a wonderful Tuesday!


Vroomans' Quilts said...

OK, I really like this! I the whole process and what a great scrap buster, too. Thank you for sharing.

Scrapatches said...

Great idea! I have never seen this variation of the DP9 Patch. I am looking forward to trying this one myself. Thank you so much for sharing your creativity ... :) Pat

Bente-I like to QuiltBlog said...

Wow how easy it that....
Thank you very much for sharing this tutorial!
Liebe Grüße

jemfl said...

How neat is that, thanks for sharing!
Will add this to my hot pad gift blocks!