Monday, June 2, 2014

My Version of the Disappearing Nine Patch

Sorry for having missed the last couple of weeks. My husband had surgery, my grandson had a birthday so we were away for a couple of days and life in general kind of got in the way of blogging.

I’ve been working on a disappearing nine patch. I don’t have it quite finished yet but I figured I would share what I have done. Most people incorporate a strip behind their blocks when they are doing this quilt but as usual, I decided to be a little different and not do that. Not sure if that was a good move or a bad one but so far I’m liking the way it’s turning out.

The fabric I used for this quilt is from the Thistleberry Collection by Fabric Editions. I won it in a giveaway and have to say that I fell in love with it the minute I saw it. It is a gorgeous fabric and really lovely to work with. 
 I cut my blocks into 5 X 5 squares. 
Then I tried to decide which way I wanted to lay them out. I then decided that I wasn’t going to be particular about the order because after all the cutting I would have to do, they weren’t going to appear in the same sequence anyway.
The one thing I will stress when you’re quilting (or actually doing anything related to sewing) is to have your steam iron on. I iron everything. It’s the way to keep everything from looking bulky and lumpy. 
I sewed my 5 X 5 blocks together in rows of 3 and ironed the seams between each one as I finished them. Separate them to each side to reduce bulk. Here is a photo of the full block finished looking at it from the back. 
Lay your block out and cut from one corner to the other. Don’t separate your triangles after making this cut. 
Take your ruler and cut the other way. You now have 4 triangles. 
Now, match two of your triangles up and sew them together being careful to match up the seams. 
Do this until you have the desired amount of blocks that you want to get the size of quilt you are planning to make. Then sew your blocks together to make strips. I sewed mine 5 blocks across and 6 blocks down. Again, be very careful to match up your seams and remember to iron them open on the back of each block as you finish. I also sewed a length of light fabric around each side of mine for contrast but it’s not necessary to do this if you don’t wish to.
Prepare the back of your quilt. I used three strips of different fabric to make mine. Iron your fabric open on the seams. (Yes, I know I’m repeating myself but I really want to stress how important it is to iron)

Now this is the hard part. This is how I put my quilt together for finished sewing. Find a large place that you can spread your quilt out so that it will lay flat. I use the floor. Lay your back out right side down. Tape a couple pieces of masking tape to one side. Then start and pull the rumples out of your back, taping as you go. Don’t pull too hard to stretch the fabric as this will result in wrinkles when you finish. Tape on your straight edges, not on the bias. Taping on the bias causes your fabric to stretch and creates rumples in your fabric.

When you have your backing prepared, lay out your batting. I like to have my back and batting at least 4 to 6 inches wider and longer than the top of my quilt. Smooth the wrinkles out of your batting. Lay your quilt top out. Start in the middle and begin pinning, smoothing out the rumples as you go. Pin small sections at a time. Depending on your preference, you may want to use a few pins or a lot. I go somewhere in between. 

When you have your quilt all pinned, lay your hand on the quilt and gently smooth between the pins. If you get bulk between them, pull the pins out and redo. The quilt should stay smooth between each pin. If it does, then you are ready to complete the sewing of your quilt.

This is as far as I’ve come with my quilt. I’m hoping to finish it in the next couple of weeks so stayed tuned for the finished result. I’m hoping it will look spectacular. We’ll see!

I hope that these instructions are clear. If there's anything that I've left out, or anything that I didn't explain thoroughly enough, please feel free to ask me about it in the comments. 

Until next time - Happy Sewing!


  1. Great information for a beginning quilter to use, thank you for sharing, looking forward to seeing finished product.

    1. Thanks! I'm hoping it will turn out as nice as I imagine it to. I'll post a picture here as soon as I get it finished.

  2. It is a fun block. Now if I could just find the time to finish the quilt, I'd be happy!


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