Today I am going to show you how to make a Rail Fence Block which is a great beginner’s block. At the Nannycraft4u Facebook group page Nanny Crafts and Sews , we have a beginners group working together on this to make each other a ‘friendship quilt’.
What you need:
Light, medium and dark fabric
From each colour, you will cut 4 lots of 2.5″ x 6.5″ strips to make our fence squares
Nanny Tip: I am using one width of fabric strip in each colour so that I can make them all at the same time
A 6.5″ rule (if you have one)
Finished block size: 12.5″
1. As we are making these for a swap, please check instructions here for accurate seams. This is very important so please take the time to check.
2. Decide how you would like the strips joined – I think I prefer them as light, medium and dark but the first ‘Queen’ in our hive of busy bees decided that she wanted them with the dark in the centre so that is what I will be demonstrating.
3. Take the first 2 strips and using a 1/4″ seam, right sides together, stitch the length of your strips
4. Repeat for the other strip. Then press – I pressed both towards the dark.
5. Now we need to square up the end by putting your ruler on the strips making sure you have it lined up with the long edges and then cut off the end.
6. Now turn the whole thing around and once again, lining your ruler up carefully, cut off at 6.5″
7. Repeat for another 3 squares.
8. Now comes the fun part! You have to decide which way to join them back together,
First we have a whirly gig or windmill thingy in the centre and you can see how different it looks by making either the light or the medium form the whirly gig.
Or you may prefer to make it a Chevron or zigzag pattern. You can see the z forms in the light and medium and this will continue throughout the quilt top
The last example I am calling the weave because when its done it gives the illusion of the strips being woven together.
You can find lots of examples that give a very different effect but our ‘Queen’ has selected the chevron so let’s continue.
9. With the Chevron, the strips are placed in the same order – so the vertical strips go the same way ie medium,dark,light and the horizontal strips go in this case from the top, medium,dark,light.
10. Take the top two squares and with right sides together and using a 1/4″ seam, join and press. Repeat with the bottom 2 squares.
Nanny Tip: When pressing, press one seam to the left and the other to the right so that you are able to ‘nest’ them when joining – see here for explanation
11. Now nesting the seams, join and press. Now you have a completed 12.5″ square.
I am not a member of the swap group so I am going to use this block as the start of another charity quilt. Now I just have to decide on what to add to it!
I hope you make a Fence Rail Block sometime – it is fast and effective and so handy for those times you want to ‘whip’ up a fast gift.
Until next time