Saturday, 25 June 2016

Free Mini Block Pattern - Churn Dash

I'm back with another free mini quilt block pattern. This time, it's the Churn Dash. I've also got some mini block sewing tips for you, so be sure to read through.


I made several of these churn dash blocks to try to find the best way to press the seams. A bit time consuming, but I aim in all my patterns - even the free ones - to figure those things out so that you don't have to! So, it's worth the time.

In most mini blocks the seams are bulky no matter which way you press them. You can deal with and reduce the bulk in a few ways:
  • Use thinner fabrics and avoid bulkier ones;
  • Make sure those seams are pressed as flat as you can get them. Finger pressing first can help get the seam 'set' before ironing and will make ironing the little pieces easier. I press with my fingers first, then use my finger nail to get a good crease. 
  • Don't be afraid to press some seams open and some to the side, but make sure your quarter inch seam allowance is adjusted accordingly if necessary. (In my experience, a seam that is pressed open will take up less fabric than one that is pressed to the side, so I sew a slightly narrower seam - a scant quarter inch - when I press to the side than when I press open. Test it out for yourself and see if you find the same thing.)
  • Trim seam allowances down to an eighth of an inch after sewing and pressing.
  • Use spray starch or a starch alternative. You can starch all your fabrics lightly before you begin cutting, then spray again if you need to after sewing the seams. Be sure to press the seams first to get the block or unit as flat as you can, then spray lightly and press them again. 

Here is another mini churn dash with the seams pressed differently to the pink:


You can get the free pattern by clicking the button below, which will open the file for you in another page, ready to download. Or, head to my Craftsy Pattern Store for the free download.
Happy Sewing!

Hope x

4 comments:

  1. Hope, we're on vacation but I've downloaded your generous pattern and can't wait to attempt it soon. I really appreciate your tips as I've not done minis yet ๐Ÿ˜Š

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    1. I hope the tips help. :) I think a lot of the learning comes from the doing too, so if you come up with any tips yourself be sure to let me know.

      Enjoy your vacation. x

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  2. Do you have plans to make a mini sampler Hope? It will be interesting to see where these end up.
    I guess it must be freezing down your way at the moment - good indoor sewing weather.

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    1. Hi Karen, I have a couple of ideas for these little blocks. I had originally thought to make a sampler, but now I'm contemplating working them into a little bunting to brighten up the shelves in my sewing room. I will see what I think when I have a few more done.

      It is indeed freezing down here at the moment. We've been having negative overnight temperatures for a while now, which are easing off now with the onset of cloudy, rainy weather. Definitely good indoor sewing weather!

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