Quilt-Along : The Wedding Ring Block

It’s time for our first block – the Wedding Ring block!  (Miss our earlier posts? You can find more information about fabric requirements, cutting tips, and fabric color options.)

Many years ago, Florence and Arthur were engaged to be married but Arthur left town and never showed up at the church. When Arthur returned to Milton Falls years later, Florence and Arthur renewed their friendship and she rented space in one of his buildings for the Milton Falls Quilt Company. Over time, their romance rekindled. Friendship Album: Forget-Me-Not begins with everyone preparing to attend Florence and Arthur’s wedding.  Will Arthur place the ring on Florence’s finger? (Listen to chapter 2 to find out.)

It was such fun to get a sneak read of Friendship Album: Forget-Me-Not when I was designing the Loves Me, Loves Me Not quilt. The novel opens with Dorothy, Eula, Bess and their families preparing to attend Florence’s wedding and speculating with each other whether Florence and Arthur will actually get married this time. Given the importance of the wedding as the novel opens, the Wedding Ring block was a natural choice.

The Wedding Ring block is constructed with half-square triangles (HST). You will need four blocks for the throw-sized quilt and one block for the baby-sized quilt.

The pattern calls for sewing with a scant quarter-inch seam. What does this mean and why is it important? Let discuss!

Consistent seam allowances are important for quilting – blocks to go together nicely and the final quilt top will lay nice and flat. If you sew a perfect quarter-inch seam – i.e. the distance between the stitching line and the edge of the piece is exactly a quarter-inch – you will loose just a thread’s width or two when you press the seam to the side. That might not sound like much but for a block like our Wedding Ring block, those little bits can add up and the final block may be as much as a quarter-inch too small when the half-square triangles are sewn together.

The solution is to sew a scant quarter-inch seam – a seam that is a thread width or two narrower than a quarter-inch. The technique is also helpful for units that need to be trimmed to size because it gives a bit of wiggle room for trimming.

Want to see this in action? Grab two squares of scrap fabric, each ” wide. Sew them together using what you think is a perfect quarter-inch seam. Press to one side and then measure the width of your sewn squares. Quilt math says they should be ” wide but your ruler will show something slightly smaller. Grab two more squares but this time sew a scant quarter-inch seam and compare the results.

Practice your scant quarter-inch seams and then tackle your Wedding Ring blocks!

Before you head off to the sewing machine, I promised a sneak peak at our next giveaway! To be eligible, you will need to share a photo of two blocks – two Wedding Ring blocks, two Ohio Stars (next week’s block), or one of each – by February 27. (More information on how to share will be available soon.) The giveaway sponsors are Oliso and Fat Quarter Shop. Until then, please share your blocks on Instagram and in the Quilt Fiction Facebook group – use tags #lovesmelovesmenotqal, #quiltfictionqal, and #storyguildqal.

Next Monday, February 13, we will make block 2 – the Ohio Star. It is a classic block you’ve likely made before. I will share a tip for trimming the hour-glass unit – the trickiest part of the process.

Don’t yet have the pattern? You can buy the pattern at the Quilt Fiction Shop.

If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment or email qal@quiltfiction.com.