I finished the next block in my Farm Girl Vintage quilt at least a week ago. I think I even started it early because it was one I was looking forward to. Why? I'm not sure, but I like the block.
Now when I hand sew the seams, I don't stitch through the seam allowances, meaning when I have to stitch across a previous seam, I hold the seam allowance out of the way and stitch only through the two layers of fabric that are being sewn together.
This has a couple of advantages. First, it means I'm only ever sewing through two thicknesses of fabric. This is physically easier than sewing through four at a time and it makes it easier to keep the stitches small and even. The second advantage is that I can iron the seam allowances either way when I'm done the block.
You may think I'm particularly obsessed or pre-occupied with seams and the backs of my blocks, but it makes a difference. When you press to one side, the piece on that side sticks up a little bit. So when you have a choice, you need to think about what you want to emphasize. In the block above, if I had pressed all the seams towards the crossroad pieces, those grey stripes would stand up a little more than the rest of the block.
I think you can see in the first picture that the vertical grey stripes look like they're sunken a little and the horizontal ones don't. Ok, it's subtle, but it does make a difference.
Of course, each block requires you to balance all those things to decide which way to go: furling seams, what pieces are going to "stand out", whether the seam allowance will show to the front side through a light fabric and even more things. It doesn't make you dizzy only because you start to recognize the patterns and have favourite ways of dealing with them. And you have to remember there's rarely (never?) one right and perfect way. It's all about choices that you want to make. (Or don't make and leave it to chance, if that's what you want to do.)
Well, I'm sure that's enough quilting "theory" for you. Here is a collage of all the blocks so far:
And I waited so long to post this that I have pictures of Kim's block to post as well:
Oh, but wait again! I have a second block as well. Being convinced Kim was going to get ahead of me (and not knowing yet that she was doing two crossroads blocks), I started the block for the next week (which is now this week).
It is the Crops block:
Here is the back:
And here are all of the blocks done so far:
And here is Kim's Crops block:
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