Two-for-One Basket Blocks…Easy, Easy, Easy (+ a Book Giveaway)

Last time I posted, I previewed one of the quilts in Cuddle Me Quick: 11 Baby Quilt Designs, my brand-new book, co-authored once again with my friend, Christine Porter. Chris and I are very excited about our “new baby” and look forward to meeting in Houston next week to promote the book at Fall Market. (More on that later.)

Hot off the press!

In this post, rather than just a photo, I’d like to share the quick-piecing technique that I  used to make the little baskets in A-Tisket, A-Tasket, another quilt from Cuddle Me Quick. This fun-and-easy method lets you make two sweet little Basket blocks at once, saving you time both cutting and sewing. (FYI: Want to make the entire quilt? Complete yardage amounts, cutting, assembly, and quilting suggestions appear in the book, along with the technique described below)

A-Tisket, A Tasket, 38 5/8″ x 44 1/4″, designed and made by Darra Williamson, machine appliqued and quilted by Chris Porter.

You’ll love this technique. It’s soooooo easy! The following instructions yield two 4″ x 4″ finished blocks, the perfect size for using those charm squares you’ve been saving.

1. Cut one square each, 5″ x 5″, from three different fabrics. Determine which square will be the basket bottom, the handle, and the background.

Step 1: Cut three 5″ squares.

2. Following the manufacturer’s instructions for the fusible, prepare the handle square for fusing. Use the handle pattern in the Pattern Library to make a handle template. (Be sure your printer is set to print the pattern at 100%; no scaling.) Cut the handle from the prepared handle square.

Step 2. Prepare the handle for fusing.

3. Fold the background square from corner to corner in both directions; unfold and fingerpress. Using the foldlines as a guide, center the handle on the background square. Fuse the handle and finish the edges as desired. (I used a straight stitch here for demo purposes; Chris used a machine blanket stitch in contrasting thread for the blocks in the quilt.)

Step 3. Fuse the handle; secure with stitching.

4. Draw a diagonal line, corner to corner, on the wrong side of the appliqued background square. Draw a line 1/4″ from the original line on both sides. Place the marked square right sides together with the basket-bottom square. Sew on the two outermost lines.

Step 4. Sew on the two outermost marked lines.

5. Cut the unit apart on the center diagonal line.

Step 5: Cut the triangles apart on the center line.

6. Press the units open and voila! Two identical Basket blocks. Trim the blocks to 4 1/2″ x 4 1/2″ if necessary.

Chris used a decorative machine blanket stitch to finish the basket handles in A-Tisket, A-Tasket.

To further celebrate our new book, I’m offering an autographed copy as a giveaway to one of our See How We Sew readers! Leave a comment by midnight (PST), November 8, telling me why you’d like to own this book, and you’ll be entered into the random drawing to win. I’ll announce the winner in my 11/20 post.

Meantime, we’ve got a winner for the Lark Crafts book, Creative Quilting with Beads, from my September 18 post. And that winner is…fleurette! Please email your snail-mail address via seehowwesew@gmail.com, and I’ll get your book on its way.

Finally, if you plan to be at Market: Chris and I will be doing a 30-minute Schoolhouse on Friday, October 26, at 1:20 pm in Room 352D; we’ll have a doorprizes for a few lucky attendees. We’ll also be doing demos and signing books at the Martingale & Company booth (#264), Saturday, October 27, 10:30 am – 11:30 am. Do stop by and say hello!

‘Til next time, happy stitching!