Welcome!! I’m so excited that the quilt along has finally begun! I think some of you guessed that the first block would be a sewing machine, well, here it is and I hope you love it!
Constructing the Block
I want to reassure you that although there are a lot of pieces, this block is not as complicated as you might first think! The instructions break the block down into different segments and it comes together quite easily so please don’t be put off! You can contact me and the other designers on the Facebook group if you have any questions.
The sewing machine block is created out of four different sections as shown below.
At a finished size of 18″ x 24″ you will notice that this block is larger than the others in the qal which will finish at 12″ square. It could be used as a central point in a quilt top or a wall hanging or you might want to add a border and use it as a mini, it’s totally up to you!
Before you begin . . .
I know some of you are complete beginners and we are delighted to have you joining in with us. Before you start, I would strongly recommend you sew a quick test block to ensure your seams are coming out with an accurate 1/4″ seam allowance. Read my test your seam allowance post if you’d like some tips on how to do this. With so many different pieces, you need to sew accurately to get the best results with this block.
Start by cutting out all your pieces. Each piece should be labelled with a letter or a number as per the instructions. This will make it much quicker and easier to assemble the block. I cut up a sticky note and used that to label each piece. Below are all the background pieces for my sewing machine block.
Stitch And Flip Corners
The sewing machine block uses several ‘stitch and flip’ corners. These are simple to do.
- Place a square over the corner, right sides together.
- Using an air-erasable fabric pen, rule a diagonal line across the square.
- Stitch along the ruled line.
- Trim off the corner leaving a 1/4″ seam allowance.
- Press the corner upwards.
This is the reverse of the block showing the seam pressed open which gives a nice, flat finish to the corners.
Appliqueing the Control Dial
After the block has been pieced, use your favourite method of applique to add the control dial. If you are new to applique, I have a guide to machine applique. Personally, I used blanket stitch and fusible web to quickly add my dial.
Adding the Embroidery
Using silver embroidery thread, stitch in a ‘needle’ using back stitch. If this fills you with dread, then you could always draw in a needle with a permanent fabric pen.
I embroidered a row of stitches close together with the same silver thread I used for the needle to form a thread guide.
With ten strands of brown embroidery floss, I sewed one large stitch to add the tops and bottoms of the cotton reels. Depending on what you plan to do with your sewing machine block, you may want to anchor this big stitch with a number of small stitches using the same thread to invisibly anchor the threads. Alternatively, you could use back stitch to securely stitch in the spool ends. A square of interfacing fused over the knots of thread at the back of your block, will help to keep knots secured.
Stitching in The Thread . . .
I used a removable fabric pen to draw in the swirly thread. After turning the stitch length down, I sewed along the drawn line using a double stitch setting on my Pfaff machine. Before sewing, I reinforced the background with a removable tearaway stabiliser.
As you finish off your sewing machine block, let your creativity run riot! I’m so looking forward to seeing your creations.
I’d love to know your thoughts on this pattern, so do add a comment below as I love to hear from you! Follow me on Facebook and Instagram or sign up to my blog to see my latest patterns and tutorials.
This year we are organising the sew along differently. Rather than a prize draw for completing each block, there will be a prize draw for completing each segment. This is to facilitate those who just want to use the blocks to make small projects rather than a full quilt.
Giveaway entries will be accepted from 12 am May 7 to 11.59 pm May 20, 2019 (Eastern time). You can enter through Facebook, Instagram or the linky party in the segment’s final block post. (You can read the full details on my introductory post.)
For our first segment, we have some great prizes:
- A Large Folding Cutting Kit from Omnigrid® including an 18″ x 24″ folding cutting mat, a 45 mm rotary cutter, and a 3” x 18” Omnigrip ruler.
- A 20 piece 2 1/2″ strip pack from Timeless Treasures Tonga Treat Strip Jr. “Orchid”.
- Two Shabby Fabrics Vintage Blessings printed table runner patterns and a packet of Sunflower laser-cut appliqués.
- And not one but THREE PDF patterns of your choice from our ‘Partners in Design’ designers.
Check out all the gorgeous versions of the sewing machines made by the ‘Partners in Design’ team.
Abbie @Sparkle On
April @JANDA Bend Quilts
Becca @Pretty Piney Quilts
Bobbi @Snowy Days Quilting
Jennifer @the Inquiring Quilting
Karen @Tu-Na Quilts, Travels, and Eats
Kathleen @Kathleen McMusing
Sandy @SandyStar Designs
Sherry @Powered by Quilting
How to Join Us
We’d love to have you quilt along with us. If you like what you see, join our Facebook group and tag your friends. Through the group, you will get access to the patterns as they are released and you will be able to see all the different interpretations of the blocks.
Finally, a very big thank you to our generous sponsors. Check them out below.