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Block Design – The Modern Popsicle

We were given 6 fat eighths to create an original quilt design block that finishes at 12-inches square (12.5 inches unfinished). A fat eighth is typically 9″x20″. We were to use at least 3 of the colours from the Watermelon Summer palette and only the fabric provided by Fabri-Quilt. Summer was to be used as our inspiration.

Fabri-quilt Watermelon Summer Colour Palette
Fabri-quilt Watermelon Summer Colour Palette

Jumping fully into any challenge I decided I would find a way to use all the fabric sent! And what says summer to a mom of four kids more than popsicles!

Inspiration picture
Inspiration picture

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  • I am a modern quilter and I designed this block with the intent that it can also be used as an abstract modern graphic block in various contexts. I did some samples using Kona solids to make some testers and I do like the secondary designs that occur in the variations. This week is all about Fabri-quilt so I will post variations next week. So here it is, The Modern Popsicle:Modern Popsicle

The Modern Popsicle Tutorial

The first thing to do is prepare your fabric. There is so much debate in the Quilt Universe on this one. I am just going to tell you how I do it. I DO NOT PRE-WASH. I have enough washing with four kids that I never ever pre-wash. (Do use colour catchers when you go to wash your final quilt).

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I also use Flatter and I dry iron. If I am trying to “revive” Flatter I will use a bit of steam. However, I mainly uses Flatter to just get big folding creases out. I am not a starch girl but many people are – if you are starch before you cut the fabrics.

Pieces to cut:

Background fabric (if using one colour):

(2) 12.5″x1.5″                (8) 2.5″x 3/4″

(1) 12.5″x2.5″                (4) 2.5″x1.0″

(4) 6.5″x1.5″                  (8) 1.5″x 3/4″

I used one background fabric in this block but you can also divide this into four and cut out four different background colours as below:

From each background colour (if using four different ones) cut:

(3) 6.5″x1.5″                  (2) 2.5″x 3/4″

(1) 2.5″x1.0″                  (2) 1.5″x 3/4″

For “popsicle sticks” cut: (in my block this is white)

(4) 1.5″x1.0″                  (8) 2.5″x1.0″

From each colour of “popsicle” cut:

Piece A 4.5″x2.5″ (1) and a Piece B 5.5″x1.5″ (1)

You could make these all the same colour or all different for variations. There are 4 Piece Bs and 4 Piece As in each 12.5″ block.

Creative Grids Ruler 2.5
Creative Grids Ruler 2.5″

I love my 2.5″ ruler. If you follow me on Instagram you will get the sense that I am rarely in the same place which is true. So my sewing has to be portable and I have a bag that I carry this ruler and my Creative Grids 6.5″ rulers around in. I love Creative Grids rulers! Using a rotatory cutter I do the age old measure twice cut once. Stack your pieces into their size categories as you cut to not mix them up.

Prepare your layout:

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I always layout my pieces of my blocks in the order they should be. That way I can quickly see any cutting errors – as yes, they still happen. You can see here that I actually had put the wrong pieces in between the white popsicle sticks on the bottom right. A 2.5″x1.0″ background piece goes in between the two white 2.5″x1.0″ pieces. The outside pieces should then be the two 2.5″x 3/4″ background pieces. It is a subtle difference so be careful as you do your layout.

Begin chain piecing:

Chain piecing
Chain piecing

Start chain piecing the “sticks” and background.

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As you go cut pieces of the chain off to set seams, press open and reposition into your layout to ensure you are still matching with the correct pieces. It can become like a jigsaw puzzle I find if I chain piece everything without doing this in steps. It is slower but I also just the enjoy the process.

As you go keep putting pieces back into the layout
As you go keep putting pieces back into the layout

Next join the sticks to the popsicles.

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You will see that this block is really broken into 4 quadrants. There are upper left, upper right, lower left and lower right units. These could actually be used as 6.5″ blocks onto themselves and be rotated in different directions to create varying effects as well. To me this is just the block that keeps on giving!

Next join the two popsicles in each quadrant to each other.

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Now join a left side unit to a right side unit as laid out above.

I wanted to show what this could look like as well if you left out the added background pieces to create another neat take on this.

An alternate block layout
An alternate block layout
And another side by side alternate
And another side by side alternate

Now join the long 12.5″x1.5″ pieces to each unit.

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Lastly sew the 12.5″x2.5″ background piece to one unit and then attach the other to this.

The final seam!
The final seam!

Square up and presto you have your 12.5″ square Modern Popsicle block!

The Modern Popsicle
The Modern Popsicle

Be sure to check out all the other Fabri-Quilt New Blocks on this Blog Hop today and the ones from earlier this week:

Monday, August 31st
Host – Yvonne of Quilting Jetgirl
Tuesday, September 1st
Host – Cheryl of Meadow Mist Designs
Wednesday, September 2nd
Host – Stephanie of Late Night Quilter
Thursday, September 3rd
Host – Terri Ann of Childlike Fascination
Robyn of Hoops & Thimbles
Helen of Midget Gem Quilts
Jinger of Trials of a Newbie Quilter
Anja of Anja Quilts
Kathryn of Upitis Quilts
Mary of Quilting is in my Blood
Emma of My Handmade Home
Francine of Mocha Wild Child
Dina of Living Water Quilter
Deb of The Farmhouse Quilter
Lori of SewPsyched!
Amy of 13 Spools
Denise of CrafTraditions
Sandra of The Bias Edge

Sandra of One Million Stitches

There are 60 in total for the week so lots of fun free projects to be had. A big thank you to the amazing hosts! I had a great time doing this and as always I am truly amazed by all the talent in this community of ours.

Until next week when I show you some Kona playing,

K

Posted by:Kathryn Upitis

Kathryn Upitis 1102, 690 Princeton Way SW Calgary, Alberta T2P5J9 Canada IG: @kupitis Email: kupitis@shaw.ca

15 replies on “The Modern Popsicle – The New Fabri-Quilt Block Blog Hop

  1. Kathryn, your Modern Popsicle block is so cool. It is hotter here this week than it has been all summer so we will be pulling out the popsicles tonight. The colors of the fabrics fit the most popular flavors of popsicles. Everyone fights for the lime and raspberry ones. Thanks for a great tutorial.

  2. This is a creative little design, which I like because I can see the popscicle when I think of it, but also abstract enough they can disappear. Versatile! I’ve never heard of Flatter, and will have to keep my eyes open for that product. I’m an extra heavy Spray Starch user, but it doesn’t always get those folds pressed flat.

  3. Great Block. Thanks for sharing those fun popsicle photos that were the inspiration. I love clean modern quilts and this block really fits the bill. I admire your creativity!

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