vintage 30s blog button cropped2Hi, Everyone!
I’m so excited to be part of Ruby’s Blog Hop featuring the beautiful fabric Line “Vintage 30’s Ruby’s Treasures” designed by my friend, Barb Eikmeier, for Paintbrush Studios!!  In the hop, each of the six designers selected a block designed by Ruby Short McKim, featured in Ruby’s only book, 101 Patchwork Patterns.  Ruby’s book is can be found at:
where Ruby’s block patterns can be downloaded for free!  Each designer has selected one of Ruby’s blocks to share with you using fabrics from the “Ruby’s Treasures” fabric line and has redrafted her chosen block to finish at 12″ so that the blocks can be easily set together into a beautiful quilt top!  If you haven’t seen the other blocks and blogs, you will find links toward the end of this post!
I perused Ruby’s block patterns, and after much wavering, I chose the Spool block from Ruby’s patchwork patterns.  If you know anything about me, you know I love sewing set-in seams!  Though I usually work with 60-degree shapes, the spool block offers the opportunity to sew a set-in seams connecting a 90-degree corner and two pieces cut at 45-degree angles.  I would encourage you to give the set-in seam block a try!  However, if the thought of sewing set-in seams sends you into a tailspin, I’m also including instructions for piecing the block in an alternative – and very easy –  way without set-in seams.
After the tutorials on each block, be sure to read on to find out how to get your name into two drawings:  one for some of this beautiful “Vintage 30’s Ruby’s Treasures” fabric and one for my book, Hexagons, Diamonds, Triangles, and More!!!
So, without further adieu, let’s get started!
Here are the fabrics I chose to use for the two variations of the Spool block:
 All seams are sewn using a scant 1/4″ seam allowance.
Spool block, version 1 uses two fabrics:
1.  Download the template pattern here.
2.  Using heavy-duty template plastic OR using the downloaded and printed paper pattern pasted to cardboard, make the template.  (If you’ve never made a template before, there are loads of template-making instructions all over the internet!!)  Be sure to print the download at 100% / “full size”!
Here is my finished template.  Notice that I do add “anti-skid” grips (these are Fabric Grips by Collins) to the bottom of my template.
IMG_0787Using a 1/16″ hole punch, punch a small hole in the template where the two seam lines shown at the pencil tip in this photo meet.  This is the only reference hole needed on this template.  Use this hole to mark a reference dot on the wrong sides of the template-cut patchwork pieces on both corners that are represented by where those seams will come together.  The dots let you know where the seam begins and ends.
For another way to mark a reference position at these corners, see Barb Eikmeier’s Ruby’s Treasures Day 1 blog post!
3.  Fold the fabric with right sides together so that the template will fit with the “place on fold” marked edge of the template on the fold of the fabric.
Next, use a mechanical graphite pencil to carefully mark around the edges of the template onto the wrong side of the fabric.
Trace and cut two pieces from the print fabric and two pieces from the cream (a color called “rice paper”) background fabric.
4.  Using a rotary cutter, mat, and ruler OR scissors, cut out the pieces.  Because the pencil line was drawn just to the outside of the template, cut the fabric just to the inside of the pencil line for greatest accuracy.  Referring to the last photo in step 2, mark the two reference dots on the wrong side of each of the four angled pieces.
5.  Next, using your rotary cutter, mat, and ruler, cut a 4 1/2″ square from the print fabric.
IMG_0792Here are all five patchwork pieces for the Spool block.
6.  With right sides together, aligning the centers, sew one angled spool piece to the spool center.  When lined up properly, there will be a little overhang from the corners of the center square past the ends of the angled piece.  This is perfectly fine!  Bring the needle down through the reference hole.  Take 2 stitches, backstitch, then sew the seam to the opposite reference mark.  When you reach the reference mark, backstitch 2 stitches.  This reinforces the beginning and ending of the seam line so that, as you manipulate these pieces to add new pieces, stitches aren’t pulled out.
7.  Sew one angled background piece to the center square in the same manner as piece #1.
 Then, fold the block (as shown), aligning the raw edges of the angled sides with right sides together.  Sew the seam, taking care to not sew a seam allowance into a seam.
Repeat with the remaining spool and background angled pieces until all four pieces are attached to the center square and all four angled side seams are sewn.
Press the angled seams to one side, and press the four seams surrounding the center square toward the outside of the block.
The Spool block, version 1,  is complete!
Spool block, version 2 uses three fabrics:  IMG_0825
1. From the cream background fabric, cut six 4 1/2″ squares.  IMG_0811
2.  From the spool fabric, cut two rectangles, 4 1/2″ x 12 1/2″.
3.  From the “thread” fabric, cut one 4 1/2″ square.
4.  Sew one cream-colored square to each side of the center square, as shown.  Press seams toward the center square.
5.  On the wrong side of the remaining four cream-colored squares, mark a diagonal line from one corner to the opposite corner.
6.  With right sides together, place one square on each end of a 4 1/2″ x 12 1/2″ rectangle.  Make sure the diagonal lines are going in the correct direction (see photo).
7.  Sew just to the the “underside” of the line to adapt the seam allowance for the turn of the fabric.
8.  Using a rotary cutter, mat, and ruler, measure 1/4″ away from the seam line on the “underside” of the stitching line of both squares and trim away the excess.  Then, set the seams and press the folded corners over the seams on each end of the piece.
9.  Repeat with the remaining two squares and rectangle.
10.  Sew the three rows of patchwork together, creating a Spool block.
Press the seams.
Spool block, version 2, is complete!
Wanna win some fabric????  (What a silly question!!)  Here’s how:
Go to Inspired by Fabric and sign up to follow the Inspired by Fabric blog (by email or blog reader), then come back to my blog and leave a comment letting me know you’re signed up.  There will be a giveaway of a FQ bundle of Ruby’s Treasures each day of the hop!  PLUS, everyone who leaves a comment on my blog by midnight CST on Sunday, 11/20/16, will be entered in to the drawing for my book.  The drawing for my book will be on Monday, 11/21, and I will leave a comment on my blog post naming the winner with instructions for connecting with me so your book can be delivered.
Here are the other designers who have participated so you won’t miss any of the blocks:
Friday 11/4: Barb Eikmeier @Barb’s Favorites
Monday 11/7: Donna Lynn Thomas @DonnaLynnThomasQuilter
Tuesday 11/8: Theresa Ward @AlwaysQuilts
Wednesday 11/9: Pat Speth @NickelQuilts
Thursday 11/10: Reeze Hanson @MorningGloryDesigns
Enjoy the Hop!!  Enjoy the blocks!!  Have a beautiful day!!


72 responses to “Ruby’s Blog Hop: Day 6!”

  1. I already subscribe by e-mail at Ginger_1 on aol. I love the three color spool block especially. Thanks for some great directions! This was the only quilt book I could find in the library when I started seriously quilting in 1966. It’s still a good one.

  2. Guess i’ll have to try my hand at inset seams once again. =( I will eventually(!) master them. I’ve been following inspired by fabric by email. THANKS FOR A GREAT GIVEAWAY

  3. Block 2 is my fave! thanks for sharing how to make! 🙂

    I already follow Inspired by Fabric thru Newsletter & Bloglovin too 🙂 Thank you for chance to win the give-a-ways 😀

  4. I already follow Inspired by Fabric on Bloglovin.
    I love the block and don’t mind doing set-in seams. But your second block is a great alternative for the ones that do. Thank you for the giveaway.

  5. The spool block is such a cute one. I really like your second block with three colors the Best. Thank you for being a part of the hop and for the giveaway.

  6. Love the different ways to create this block. thank you so much for the Template and detailed tutorial. I already follow Inspired by fabric!

  7. I have been folLowing Inspired by Fabric blog for awhIle and really enjoy it. I would like to follow yours but HaveN’t found a sign-up. Perhaps making a comment will sign me up? I love your block and want to trynset-in seams again. I have only a little experience with them. Thanks for the tutorial!

  8. I follow inspired BY fabric on my blogger dashboard/gfc. Your block is super cute, perfect for a scrappy quilt.

  9. I follow inspired by fabric via email. I love the colors you chose for both blocks. I’m more likely to do version 2 but will try version 1. Thanks for the gret insturctions.

  10. Thanks for the tutorial on inset seams. I tried them once before and they came out so=so. I’ll have to follow your tutorial and see if I can do better!

  11. I follow inspired by fabric via bloglovin. You are terrific with set in seams…wish i could piece that well! Thanks for sharing a great gIvaway.

  12. I follow Inspired by Fabric by email. I like that you showed two ways to make the spool block. I find the second way probably would be the easier one for me. Thanks.

  13. Loved your First spool block and want to try that. I have made the 2nd one and love it!
    I follow inspired by Fabric by email!

  14. I’ve been a follower of the inspired by fabric blog for quite a WHILE on bloglovin’. Thanks for a great tutorial

  15. I am signed up, have been a fan for a long time. Set in seams are always a challenge for me. Thanks for the tutorial.

  16. Set in seams scare me, bUt i might try them using your tutorial! I follow inspired by fabric on bloglovin. Thanks!

  17. I’ve always wanted to make a mini quilt for my sewing room using a spool block, so this will be perfect for me to follow! Thank you! I do follow INspired By fabric’s blog on bloglovin. duchick at gmail dot com

  18. I’ve been following Inspired by Fabric for about a year now. It’s how I found out about you. Thanks for both versions of this block.

  19. i follow inspired by fabric blog. LOve your post Kelly! And the FABRICS you chose. I would love to win your book for my friend, Cindy. 🙂

    happy Saturday, YA’LL!!

  21. Both of your tutorials are written wonderfully. Yet, I am so glad that you did the second tutorial, I am terrible at set in seams and try and find ways not to do them. I also have not done a spool block and after seeing how lovely yours turned out, I will definitely be creating one. Thank you for the opportunity for winning a copy of your book. November 21 is my Birthday and it would be such a fantastic birthday gift to win!

    I have been following by email Inspired by fabric blog for quite some time. I like the way they introduce new fabric lines and also designers in a variety of ways that I would never have the opportunity of finding myself. Thank you again and have a fantastic creative day!


    • Hi, Diane!
      You are the winner of the drawing for my book! Please email me ( with your full name and snail mail address, and I’ll get the book sent off to you! Congratulations!

  23. Love that fabric -would be perfect for quilt for my 1st grand baby due next May. Thanks for the opportunity.

  24. Hi, Everyone!
    Thank you all so much for participating in the Ruby’s Treasures Blog Hop!! The drawings have been done. The winner of the drawing for my book is Diane. The fabric winner will be announced soon!!

    Enjoy making your Ruby blocks!!!

  25. Connie~
    My error!! My original post was meant to read 11/14 (not 11/21). Must have been my post quilt Festival sleep deprivation in full force when I tried to read the calendar the other day!!! 🙂 SO,
    I will draw for a second book on 11/21!! Good luck!!

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