10.9 The left brained swap results

January 11, 2011

I have to say kudos, kudos to my swap partner for the quiltcast supergroup tilted four patch block swap.  Actually, kudos to both of them, the one who made me my blocks, and the one who received my blocks.

This was for the innaugrial Quiltcast Supergroup block swap.

Block swapped:  Tilted 4 patch

Template and instructions found on Quilter’s Cache

Swapped with SwapBot, hosted by Katie (Quilted Magnolia in Big Tent)

Most of the other swappers were done some time in november, but the swap deadline was January 8th, so realistically I had plenty of time before I was late. 

But me being me, seeing other people complete their swapping projects, made me feel under the gun, behind, a little slow.

… And there is this whole ‘left brained quilter thing’.

You see, I had read somewhere that to control the bias of a tilted block, that you can mount a template on with freezer paper.

So I copied and cutout 4 x 4 triangle templates.

And then proceeded to iron them onto the BACK of the fabric.

Which this is leftover fabric for my hurricane top quilt.  I specifically chose this fabric first, thinking of all the colors I could draw from. for the 4 patch.

Actually these fabrics were laying out before I had my triangle templates, but you can see the fun I had here.  Many options for something else in the future!

Anyway, here’s a tip.  When you make freezer paper templates do one of two things! 

  1. iron freezer paper to the FRONT of the fabric
  2. reverse your teamplate before tracing it on freezer paper

I sewed my 4 patch together, matching them instead of actually going scrappy, using inspiration from the patches I received from Sandi.

See, the blocks are tilted to the right.  The four patch has leaned over to the right.

When you put the template on the back, the blocks, when sewn, lean to the left.

Left handed blocks from a left brained quilter.  And the other thing I wasn’t so proud of was my seam allowances. 

Yes, the seam allowances were great on my triangles, they had a template with quarter inch marked (because I wanted to torture myself), but the center of my 4 patch was not quite so nice. 

Too small seam allowance on the blocks = too large of inner block = points just matching up to the edges, but once these blocks are sewn together to something else, the points are toasted!

And I had a thought. 

Watching square in a square ruler video, I had an idea to use her method for the tilted 4 patch to make it easier!  And I could make these blocks tilt the ‘correct way’.

I had to use my current blocks to get the tilt.  Turns out these blocks are tilted 15 degrees instead of the more common 30 degrees. 

I could have also gotten the template out to figure out the tilt, but instead i used the block I already had done, but to work with it, I flipped it upside down.

The block in the back that is facing right side towards the camera has extra fabric around the outside in rectangles, which are easier to sew.

The block in the front is the block I was lining up to get the tilt correct!

Here is a picture of the completed block, ready to cut.  I had to line up my ruler straight on towards me and tilt the block behind it.

And then rip with the rotary cutter.

Square up, turn and repeat. For all 4 sides, for all 4 blocks.

Downside:  Now the bias is on the outside edge.  I hope this doesn’t create too much problem later on.  Starch it like crazy.

Or fuse the block with freezer paper for stabilization.

Moral of the story, check which direction you have the freezer paper, or you could be going backwards.  Or left tilted for the left brained quilter!

I made sure my partner got both sets of blocks, since one was backwards.  Anyway, this was fun.  On to the next swap!


  1. Your blocks came out awesome, Darla!!! I’m so happy you were able to use the purple blocks I made. I love the fabric you put with them.

  2. Hey, left tilted blocks aren’t all bad. In my case they come from a left-handed person. I am so left-handed that I never gave the direction of the tilt a second thought. I forgot to take photos of my blocks before they were sent off and as I recall they were left-tilted blocks.

    How funny, left brain and left-handed tilted blocks.

  3. […] practice green-on-green blocks that went with one of the first Twilter swaps (when we were part of Quiltcast Supergroup before we were Twilters). I had multicolored blocks I […]

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