Stitch a Churn Dash Quilt Block

The Churn Dash quilt block is a two-color traditional quilt block. This one is also constructed on a three-by-three grid, like a Nine-Patch. It is super simple and goes together really quickly…if you remember to pay attention to what you’re doing! For my 12 Classic Quilt Blocks sampler, I am stitching my Churn Dash block up at 10” in a purple floral print with a white-on-white background.

Churn Dash-Illustration     Churn Dash 1

True story: this block took me over an hour to cut and sew. Seriously, there are 17 pieces and 16 seams in the block. And I messed up three separate times! All of my mistakes could have been solved if I had just slowed down a bit and PAID ATTENTION to what I was doing. (Many sewing-related mistakes and injuries can be prevented this way!)

See that picture up there? Those triangles are the wrong size. I thought I had read the diagram, but I just skimmed over it and cut four quarter-square triangles, when I should have cut half-square triangles. ARGH! Tip: measure twice, cut once. (And I’m using “measure” in the broadest sense of the word to include “read your pattern.”)

Churn Dash 2

Okay…problem solved. Plus I have some nice triangle scraps. Moving on.

Once again, chain-piecing makes this block stitch up really quickly! So I happily chain-pieced my half-square triangles and my square units, then started stitching my rows together, and promptly ran into mistake #2. And mistake #3. Again, going too fast and not paying attention, I sewed the square unit into the top row upside down. Grr. Rip rip rip. Turned it around and moved on. Then, I sewed one of the half-square triangles into the bottom row upside down! I made the same mistake twice! Double grrr!

Churn Dash 3

After my seam ripper and I spent some quality time together fixing my boo-boos, the block really did come together quickly! I love how crisp this quilt block looks.

Churn Dash 4

The moral of the story is PAY ATTENTION! Sometimes you really do need to just walk away and come back to the sewing machine a little later with a clear head and fresh eyes.

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