Wednesday, February 29, 2012

March Block for Meg

Hi everybody!  I always get a big burst of energy at the beginning of March -- even though it's usually not quite true, I think spring is just around the corner.  You will see in my block for this month that spring is on my mind!

The top line:  I would like you to make me 'something' with Flying Geese units.  The colors I've chosen are clear, bright shades of pink/red/black/white/gray.  Here is a shot of the pile of fabrics I used as inspiration:

Please use 100% cotton fabric.  I'm not very particular about pre-washing --  a friend who owns a quilt shop told me there is really no need to wash anything purchased in the last 10 years or so, due to the ever-increasing quality of dyes.  If you're using vintage fabric or something with an unknown source, please pre-wash and iron.

Flying Geese are fun and practically addictive to make -- many a dinner has burned in our house while I made 'just one more'.  Traditionally, it is a rectangular shape with a center triangle and two 'ears' -- here are two of them, one above the other:

If you have a Flying Geese ruler, you probably already know how to use it (or its instructions are still attached to it!).  If you don't have one, don't buy one for my block, but I will highly recommend it as a terrific little tool if you like this design.

No worries if you don't have the ruler --  you can easily make these units with a rectangle and two squares.  Cut a rectangle to the desired finished size (this one is quite large as I was using a very large scale fabric):

Then cut two squares the same height of the rectangle and a bit longer than half of the length of the rectangle.  I have shown this as best I could in a photo:

Then mark a 45 degree angle seam from the bottom, left corner of the square to the top, right corner on one side.  Note that the top of the line will NOT meet the top corner of your 'square' because it's not a precise square:

Sew and trim to a 1/4" seam, then fold and press:

Then repeat on the other side, taking care to sew a truly 45 degree angle seam once again and not corner to corner.  Finally, square up the top side, which will have some extra height as shown slightly in the photo above.  Ta-da!

As I mentioned earlier, this is quite a big Flying Goose -- in fact, I've never seen one this big anywhere.  It measures 9" x 16 1/2".  You can choose whatever size you on!

So, with the instructions of how to actually make the Flying Geese unit out of the way, let's get to the fun part -- fabric choice and design!  It's important with Flying Geese to keep a consistent 'theme' so you can actually see the geese.

You could choose a consistent pink/red fabric as the goose, with various black and white fabrics as the background.  Look how fun this is with the background fading from black to white:

You could chose a variety of pinks/reds as the geese, with a consistent black and white fabric as the background:

Or, you could make your geese from the black/white fabric and use the pink/red fabric as your background like I did in the demo block.  BUT, choose one theme and stick with it!  Otherwise, you will get this unfortunate mess like I did with my first go.  Can you see how the geese pattern is lost?

Finally, the really fun stuff...what will your block look like?!  (Instruction lovers, you can begin to panic now...)  You can send ANY configuration of Flying Geese that you like.  That's right -- anything!

You could make one big one like my demo block; two medium ones like the first photo in this post; or a number of small ones.  You can sew the small ones together however you like -- in a block, in a strip of border, whatever looks good to you.

I will create the final quilt by arranging your pieces on a design board, then sewing fill-in bits to make it all fit together.  Just so you have an idea of the finished product, here is what I quickly organized on my sewing table:

Hope you have fun working on it!  I will send my address in a separate email, and thank you so much in advance!  I just can't wait to see the results!  xo Meg


  1. Thanks Meg! It was so fun to come home tonight and find your post. I'm looking forward to all of the experimenting that this project will provide. And just like with Katy's block, it is another opportunity for me to work with precision to now get those triangle points just right! I like your color choices too.

  2. I have never made flying geese before. This looks like it is going to be a lot of fun!

  3. Fun! Now to pick out fabrics....the problem I am going to have is when to stop!

  4. Thank goodness it's the 1st of March:) Thanks for the detailed instructions Meg. Flying Geese are a first for me too. There are so many possibilities, what fun!!