Sew Let’s QAL – Block 3

What a fun block we have! Sherry Shish at Powered by Quiltingoutdid herself with this design. I love the way it really does look like a Creative Grid Ruler*. She put it together in a way I don’t think that I would have – but Sherry is an engineer and thinks like an engineer.

This is my fist attempt – too wonky for my liking (and a little sharpie to make it look better on some of its alignment problems.

A Word of Caution

Above you can see my first attempt. This block is all straight lines, but there are a lot of seams and lining up to to do. Do as we say not as we did – that is why we test blocks for you and give you terrific hints. After I saw my first attempt, I decided I needed to accurately measure all my pieces, starch and label.


  1. STARCH YOUR FABRIC WELL BEFORE CUTTING: I used “Mary Ellen’s Best Press*” and did it the way Kimbery Jolly does at Fat Quarter Shop*. I wet the fabric completely (not quite as much as she did, hung it over the tub and it was dried and ready to use in a few hours. I pressed the fabric again and off I went.

2. LABEL, LABEL, LABEL. I labelled when I cut. Here is a piece that has been pieced and made a label before it was pressed and recut. It really helps keep it organized.

3. MEASURE: Keep measuring as you are stitching. It is easier to make adjustments before you sew to the next segment

4. ALIGNING THE SEGMENTS: Use a ruler to help line up the sections

5. BASTING: I used basting stitches to keep things in line! Sometimes pins are not enough. I lengthen my stitch. Sew each piece carefully – just moving the pieces without trimming between sections. I then check and resew if they are not to my liking. You can also use Elmers Washable School Glue and hit it with a hot iron to stabilize but this is not a quilt I am washing right away, so I didn’t do that.

6. APPLIQUÉ STITCHES: I used a tiny stitch, about 1.8 to go around my fused numbers. It makes it so much easier to move fabric or go around those tight spaces!

You are now well equipped to be successful with your block! Hosts are listed below and any of us are happy to help…don’t hesitate to ask. There is information below for the segments/prizes as well as updated links to prior blocks and hosts links.

Segment Prize Eligibility:
Finish all blocks in a segment and post on either our linky party, our facebook page or instagram with #sewletsqal. One picture/post with either 5 finished blocks or a small quilt, bag etc. that shows all the blocks is needed – by May 20 11:59 for Segment 1)
Grand Prize Eligibility:
Finish all 13 blocks and put in either 1 quilt top (does not have to be quilted) OR a number of smaller projects that contain all 13 blocks.


Full Time Hosts for Quilts:
April Becca Bobbi Sherry Jennifer
Full Time Hosts for Small Projects:
Abbie Karen Sandy

Segment 1: March 12th to May 21st
HostsSandra Kathleen<—–me!

*March 12th – Block 1: Sandra @ Sandra Healy Designs
*March 26th – Block 2: April @ JANDA Bend Quilts
*April 9th – Block 3: Sherry @ Powered by Quilting
*April 23rd – Block 4: Bobbi @ Snowy Days Quilting
*May 7th – Block 5 & Project Suggestions: Abbie @ Sparkle On! 
*May 21st – Segment 1 Prize Winner Announced!

Segment 2 & 3 Dates (Specific details on these segments later)
Segment 2: May 21st to July 16th
July 16th – Segment 2 Prize Winner Announced!
Segment 3: July 16th to September 10
September 10th – Segment 3 Prize Winner Announced!
September 24th – Grand Prize Winner Announced!

Disclaimer: *Links with asterisk indicate an affiliate link and as an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Your price is not any different, but a small percentage of the sale will go to supporting my blog.


  1. April 9, 2019 / 7:59 AM

    Hi Kathleen! You have shared some great tips for making this block. I love the idea of using a ruler to line up each of the rows as you go along. That plus starch sound like success to me. Happy Tuesday, friend. ~smile~ Roseanne

    • kathleenquilts
      April 9, 2019 / 10:31 AM

      It really was a help to use both techniques. I find the basting to be more helpful with pinning for pieces that are a bit more finicky.

  2. inquiringquilter
    April 9, 2019 / 10:45 AM

    What great tips! I never thought of using a ruler, or of basting, but both should really help with making this block.

    • kathleenquilts
      April 9, 2019 / 10:52 AM

      It is funny what little things we don’t think of – or remember one time but forget the other time!

  3. April 9, 2019 / 1:04 PM

    Really great tips!!! I wished I’d known to use the ruler to align the seams when I made mine. I checked and a couple of mine are off. I NEVER even thought about aligning them. But they aren’t that bad and I’m not redoing. Your block looks great!

    • April 19, 2019 / 4:52 PM

      It was a challenging block but they all turned out great. I’m kind of fussy and my first one was a mess and had the wrong size piece in it too. I didn’t trust that it wasn’t me as it all seemed so wonky. I think starch was the key to making it work well.

  4. April 9, 2019 / 1:57 PM

    I agree with you Kathleen this is not an easy block but your finished ruler looks great. I wish I had thought of basting the seams, it would really help to match up the grid accurately, great tip!

    • April 11, 2019 / 8:36 PM

      I knew this would be hard, it is just so many tiny pieces. Its not something I usually do and I am not a slow piecer so I had to switch it up to get it done right. Basting was a big help…as I find that things shift even with multiple pins.

  5. April 10, 2019 / 9:41 PM

    Great tips, Kathleen! I can see how much improved your block became. That is such a clever block!

    • April 11, 2019 / 8:37 PM

      Thanks, Nancy. The block did improve and there was a piece that was wrong in our first set of instructions – its why we test! I thought it might be me, so I was glad to redo it.

My Favorite Tools

Pins with Numbers & Arrows
Annies Soft and Stable Foam Stabilizer
By Annie’s Clear Vinyl
Heat N Bond Iron On Vinyl
Omni Thread, Purplelicious
Aurifil 50 weight thread
Hobbs Tuscanny Wool Batting
Freezer Paper Sheets
Binding Sasher
Nexcare Clear Skin Tape
Cluck Cluck Sew Tape
Simple Folded Corners Ruler
Free Motion Quilting Workbook
Shape by Shape Collection 2
Shape by Shape
DayLight Wafer 1 Light Box
Freezer paper
Siteground Web Hosting
Dream Cotton Batting
Sidekick Ruler
Hex N More Ruler
4″ Circular Plastic Needlepoint
Awesome Ocean Pattern
Schmetz NonStick Needle
Sulky Totally Stable
Barn Quilt by Sherry Shish
Applique Pressing Sheet
Mary Ellen’s Best Press Starch
Clover Bias Tape Maker 12mm
Woven Diamonds Pattern
Hobbs Premium 80/20 Batting
Woven Star Pattern
Wefty Needle
Quilt Hanger
Fat Quarter Shop
Westalee Sampler Template Set
Mettler 60 wt. Cotton Embroidery Thread
Sandboard for Hand Sewing/Appliqué
Clover Needle Threader
Sewline Black and White Pencil
Sewline Grey Pencil
Backyard Birds
Wing Clipper
Quilt Pounce
Hobbs Thermore Batting
Clover Chaco Liner – silver
Turnabout Patchwork by Terese Mairal Barreau
Sewline Glue Pen
Fusible 1″ Hexagon Paper
Fusible Appliqué Paper
Electric Quilt 8
Quilter’s Dream Select Batting
Quilt in A Day Log Cabin
Judy Martin Log Cabin
Emiko Toda Loeb
3M Command Strip Clothespins
Paper Templates for Lucy Boston
Lucy Boston Templates,MPP
Lucy Boston Patchwork of the Cross
Clover Wonder Clips
Thread magic
Clearly Perfect Angles
Slotted Triangle Trimmer