Thursday, August 27, 2009

String Blocks

Even though this is only my fourth post, I am posting a tutorial! Today's post is actually going to be about making a string block and then I will show you my progress on my string quilt. I think that you will have fun following the tutorial and I will have fun creating it! Please excuse my blurry pics... I will replace them later on if you can't follow easily! Here we go!

The first thing you are going to need are strings. Strings can be anything long and thin and as wide as only 1/2". Here is a picture of my strings.

You will also need some paper backings of any size you like, (I used 4"), a sewing machine, a rotary cutter and mat, an iron and ironing board and scissors.

The first step is to lay down a base strip across the paper on the diagonal right side up and another on top of it right side down like this:

Then seam through the paper and the fabric layers like this:

Then finger press it open so that it looks like this:

Continue adding strings until you get to a corner and then instead of a strip use a chunk of fabric as shown here:

Here is a general idea of what your block should look like before trimming:

And here it is after trimming with your rotary cutter:

The next step is to pick the paper off the back of the block:

I like to have at least 4 block quarters before actually pulling out the paper so that I can make a whole block but you can do whatever you want to.

Now to iron it:

And here is the finished block quarter! You made it this far so let's continue...

Now we need to arrange 4 of these block quarters into a finished block, and then sew them together! Here are the pictures:

And last but not least, here is how my progress on my actual quilt is going!

I'm really enjoying making this quilt and I can only hope you do too!


  1. A great tutorial Jordan! You did a good job on each point. The beginnings look wonderful, and it should be a very pretty quilt.
    I string piece onto a fabric foundation. I get to use old sheets and odds and ends of fabric for my foundation squares. The ones in my Block Party are 8.5" I've tried to keep it fairly evenly split between darks and lights. You sure can use up alot of "stuff" making these quilts. Good luck with your blog, and welcome to blogland. Hugs, Finn

  2. What a wonderful tutorial. You did a fantastic job for someone so young. How proud you must be. I hope I see more of your work. I'll follow you. Come visit me too.

  3. Welcome to blogland! Great tutorial. I like to use foundation (like muslin) instead of paper so I don't have to rip it off. I just leave it on and it stabalizes the block. Can't wait to see more of your work!

  4. Wow! Great tutorial!

    I can't believe how talented you are. I thought I was doing good making my first quilt at 15. You are so far beyond where I was at your age! I am proud of you and I don't even know you. I will definitely be following your progress.

    How are you making your Dear Jane blocks? Do you have the book?

  5. I love making string quilts but I use a thin fabric or muslin as my base. You might be interested in
    She makes lots of string quilts ... check out her blog.

    To make the paper come off easier sprits it with water, wait a minute and the paper will fall away. Saves your stitching and keeps your block straight.

  6. I love this!!! Reminds me of some crazy quilting I've done so I can't wait to try this...great tutorial by the way!

  7. I recently started making a string quilt also. I'm using an old sheet for a fabric foundation though. I can't imagine sitting there and taking off all those papers. I'm surprised how much I like the process of adding my scraps to each square. I like the idea of sewing four squares together to make a block each time you finish four sections. It saves on worrying about placement later on.