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Viola – Block #98 of The Farmer’s Wife 1930 Sampler


Viola is the second of 2 checkerboard blocks this week, this time combined with some quarter square triangles. This block has 3 different fabric choices and by using chain piecing techniques, actually went together quite fast.

Tutorial – Viola


Block # 98 – Viola

The fabric I have used is ‘Blessings’ by Moda, my thread for piecing is Rasant 50wt in a sandy beige colour.  I am piecing on my older Janome 6129 Quilters Edition using a quarter-inch foot.

I printed the pattern on normal paper and I make sure to remove the paper pieces carefully after trimming the section to the dotted line.  The patterns are all available on the CD-ROM that comes with the book, you’ll need a copy of the book to be able to make the block, no measurements are given in this tutorial. Block directions are located on page 236.

I have also made Viola using the templates available from Marti Michell. I have been convinced of their worth and am really enjoying using them. This block requires Set A of the templates and a good rotary cutter and cutting mat.  You can find the conversion chart for using the templates here.

None of my fabric choices have directional prints that will affect whether I choose to place my blocks on point or straight. This is a consideration for when you cut your pieces of fabric. (a friendly reminder)

The foundation paper piecing patterns that can be found on the CD with the book are mirror images of the completed blocks pictured in the book.  Angie has a good explanation about this and how to print it mirror image on her blog, www.gnomeangel.com.  I have not done this so my FPP block is slightly incorrect. However this is my quilt and they will not be in the same quilt, no quilt police here.

If you would like to see a tutorial on Foundation Paper Piecing follow this link.

Viola – Using Marti Michelle templates

My first step was to make sure I had all the correct pieces, then I started by chain piecing the small squares.  Note my piecing fail, remember right sides together!chain-piecing-98-Viola I was happily piecing and realized I has made 4 patch blocks instead of strips of 4 squares.  No matter it all works in the end, we’re basically making a small checkerboard as similar to Nellie.  For those counting I have 7 in this picture as the 8th is still on the machine.chain-pieced-4-patchI am a nester!  I like to press to the side and I like to nest my seams.  There is a trend to pressing seams open and whilst I can see where this can be beneficial, as a long-arm quilter I still like to press to the side.quarter-squre-triangle-section-nested-seams

This is one quarter square triangle section. I’m glad the direction of the lines matched.Here are my four patches sewn together, one last seam for a checkerboard section.


Viola – Using Marti Michelle templates

block-sections-ready-violaThe checkerboards sections get sewn to the quarter square triangles and I have pressed to the QST.  Less seams here means it will press flatter.  I have heard a lot about using starch to press with and I gave it a try today, I was pleased with the result and may need to check out the Flatter product that Angie has mentioned.viola-halvesViola – Completed using Marti Michelle templates.finished-viola-mm

Viola – Using Foundation Paper Piecing

finished-viola-block-98-paper-piecingThe piecing was not that different as I chose not to use the foundation papers for most of the checkerboard.  I did use the foundation paper for the first row of the checkerboard and for the quarter square triangles.  It was quicker I thought to chain piece the strips of blocks after I had laid them out than to use the paper for this easier section.

I have gotten in the habit of positioning the next piece correctly then flipping it into position for sewing, then I know I have the correct side of a triangle to sew.check-correct-positioningI knew I needed to reduce the seam allowance on the cream fabric to make sure it covered the whole section.correct-position-flipped-to-sewSo that I had the cream and red fabric in the correct placement I laid out the pieces and then proceeded to chain piece them into strips of 4 squares.  I did not use the foundation papers here for speed.foundation-section-checkerboard-layoutthe checkerboard sections are ready to join to the paper pieced sections after I trim the sections to the correct size and shape. The sections were the right size and shape so I felt it was safe to remove the papers after trimming.sections-ready-to-trim-and-joinThe two half sections ready to join together.foundation-halvesAnd here is Viola, completed using foundation paper piecing for parts anyway.finished-viola-block-98-paper-piecingSo there is Viola, ready for inclusion, done 2 ways and looking fabulous!

The next few blogs to check out

29/03/2016: Angie @ GnomeAngel.com & Marti @ Marti Michell

31/03/2016: Raylee @ Sunflower Quilting & Sedef @ Down Grapevine Lane

05/04/2016: Angie @ GnomeAngel.com & Marti @ Marti Michell

07/04/2016: Janice @ Better Off Thread & Anita @ Daydreams of Quilts

12/04/2016: Angie @ GnomeAngel.com & Marti @ Marti Michell

14/04/2016: Kerry @ Kid Giddy

19/04/2016: Angie @ GnomeAngel.com & Marti @ Marti Michell

21/04/2016: Lisa @ Sweet Little Pretties


The books can be purchased at


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