Turnabout Granny Squares Quilt Tutorial

Jenny Doan

Turnabout Granny Squares Quilt Tutorial

Quilt Size: 65" x 78"
Time: 16 minutes
Jenny Doan demonstrates how to make the Granny Square block the quick and easy way using 2.5 inch strips of precut fabric (jelly rolls). For this project, Jenny used Tonga Treats Batiks - Posey 2.5" Strips by Daniela Stout of Cozy Quilt Designs for Timeless Treasures. She also used a pack of white 2.5 inch strips.
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video transcript

Hi everybody, it’s Jenny from the MSQC. And I have a really fun project for you today. Take a look at this quilt behind me. Isn’t this a great quilt? Now this is an old block, a traditional old block and it’s a granny square block. But I have a new quick easy way for you to put this together and I just think you’re going to love it. So to make this project what you’re going to need is one packet of 2 ½ inch strips. And we have used Tonga Treats Batik Posey by Danella Stout for Timeless Treasures. You’re also going to need a pack of 2 ½ inch white strips. And these are actually a batik fabric. So you know, fabrics, batiks fabrics have a whole different feel so these go right together. You’re also going to need a little bit of border. Your inner border is going to come out of that pack of strips. Your outer border is the six inch border and it’s a yard and a quarter. Your backing is a beautiful multi colored print. I just think it’s gorgeous on there. And for that you’re going to need 4 ¾ yards.

So to make this quilt what we’re going to do is we’re going to do strip sets. Now traditionally the granny square quilt is pretty labor intensive, because you’ve got to cut all these 2 ½ inch squares. Well we’re going to make that much easier by doing strip sets. We’re going to need two different strip sets. And so our first strip is going to be three sets of color like this and then a white one at the end. So we’ve got three sets like this with a white one. So we’ve got color, color, color, white. And we’re going to go ahead and sew these together. We’re going to sew a quarter of an inch right down the side. We’re going to line these up. Now I’m using a quarter of an inch and I’m lining up on the edge of my foot. Now if you don’t have a quarter of an inch foot you can use the edge of your foot, just measure and make sure your needle is, on this machine I can move my needle back and forth and so I’ve moved it so that I’m right along the edge at a quarter of an inch because you want these to match up. These are going to have to match up and that’s why we’re doing strip sets. Alright so we’re just going to sail along here and sew these together. Alright just a little bit more. Alrighty, now we’re going to press these open. And this is going to be our first strip set. So I’m over here at the iron. And I am actually just going to press from the top and I’m going to roll my iron back and forth. You want to make sure there’s no creases or pleats in between these. And so I like to press from the top first like this because I want a nice flat top. And then I’m going to flip it over and I’m going to make sure that my seams are going in the right direction and it’s like a little miracle. They’re all going the right way. I like to press them going all one direction like this. And, and they are, like I just turned it over and it was perfect. I’m feeling like, you know, I should buy a lottery ticket today or something. These are great.

Alright. So this is our first strip set right here. Now I’m going to set this aside. And I want to show you the second strip set because it’s all made exactly the same way. It’s four strips but these two strips right here are flipped. So we’re going to have a strip set where we have two, two colors and then our white and a color. So that’s just flipped. So the difference between the two right here. We’ve got, we’ve got color, white, color, color. And then we’ve got over here, color, color, color, white. So you’re going to make five of each set. And then we’re going to cut these into 2 ½ inch strips. Now I’m just going to leave this folded in half. If you are, you know, not an experienced cutter or if you’re a little shy about doing this, don’t fold them in half. Do them singly one at a time. I’m actually going to fold both of these sets together like this. And I’m going to stack them. And you can see I’ve left a little room here to cut off my selvedge edge. And I’m going to do that. Let me find my rotary cutter. And so I’m just going to lay this, I’m just going to lay this ruler right on here like this. And I’m going to trim this and straighten up that edge. And then I’m just going to set my ruler in. Now if you are right handed you’re actually going to come from the other direction. But for me this works perfectly. And I’m going to put these over here. And you’re going to cut your whole, all your strip sets up just exactly the same way. So we’ll just keep cutting, keep cutting just like this. And you’re going to finish your whole one all the way up.

Now what we want to do is we want to separate these into two piles. So we have, we have our, our color, color, white, color and then the ones where the white color is at the end is going to be over here. So these go here. This goes here. See this is actually the same one right here. I didn’t want to confuse you there so I’ll flip that over, just like that. So you’re going to stack all your strips. And you’re going to have lots of different strips and lots of different colors and that’s what we want. Because when you put them together you want to put them together all kinds of different colors together to make your block. Now I have two cut here so mine are actually going to be, mine are actually going to be the same on either end but I think it will work for the sake of this. Alright. And so here’s what we’re going to do. We have, we have two of these this way and two this way. And you’re going to need four to make your block. So what we’re going to do is we’re going to start with our color up in the top. And then we’re going to add this color right here. The next thing we’re going to do is we’re going to flip this around and put this one here. And then we’re going to flip this one all the way around and put this one here. And that makes our granny square block. So we’re going to sew these together. And you’re just going to match up your little seams. And we’re going to sew all four of these together to make our square. I know you’re probably thinking I’ve lost my mind about this moment but it’s going to work. But I promise you. Alright so there’s the first one. Now we’re going to add the next one right here. And I’m still going to make sure, I want to see these white squares going at an angle cascading from top to bottom. So you want to make sure when you add them on that that’s happening. And I’m going to sew across this, making sure my seams line up. And one more row like this. So now I’m going to sew this last row together. I’ve noticed that some of my light squares are kind of lining up. And ordinarily I wouldn’t do that. I would pick a different strip that had more color in it. But because that’s what I’ve got going here that’s what we’re getting so I’m just going to sew down this one and make my block. Alrighty. Now we’re going to press this open. And I’ll show you what I’m talking about here.

Alright so this is the block we’re looking at right here. Now this doesn’t look very much like a granny square but we’re going to make it a granny square. Several others of these blocks you’re going to sew all your blocks together like this. You’re just going to sew a whole bunch of them and then comes the magic. So now what we’re going to do is we’re going to take these squares right here. Let me move some of this off of here. There we go. We’re going to take these squares right here and we are going to cut them diagonally right through the center, through the white squares just like this. So I’ve got my ruler on here. I’m making sure it’s lined up at every juncture and I’m just going to cut across this. And you’re going to do this to all your blocks. So then you’re going to stack them over here like this and we’re going to cut a few more. And you want to use different, when you cut these you’re going to leave these mixed up as well. You don’t want to sew the same two back together. You want to put them, match them with a different set. So I’m going to cut one more. I keep saying one more, I know. But it’s just one more. Alright here we go. Cutting here.

Alright now here’s what we’re going to do, we’re going to take several different squares and we’re going to turn these around and we’re going to sew them back together this way. Now you want to audition. I have these two right here. I don’t want those together so I’m going to put a different color in here like this one. See how that’s better? And then I’ll move this one over here and then we’ll put this one here and that one has a center. I don’t want that. So I’m going to go ahead and cut this one right here and see if I get a different color in my center which I should. Because we want all these blocks to be different. We want it to look like we really spent some time piecing these blocks. Ok so now we have this right here. And I’m going to put this one in here. Alright, now see how this is going to go. That’s our block. That’s what we’re going for right there. So now what we’re going to do is we’re going to sew these two together over here and these two together over here. And we’re just going to sew straight down the side. And I’m going to lay this one right here so I know where I’m going back to. And this one also and I’m just going to sew a quarter of an inch right down the side, match up my little seams. It’s the matching up of these little seams that really makes it look like we spent a lot of time cutting little tiny pieces. And I love quilts that make it look like you worked so hard. Alrighty, here we go. Here’s this one. Alright. And now, and see you can actually, once you get all your blocks cut you can actually chain piece the whole thing. And I mean this goes together so quickly. Alright so now what we’re going to do is we’re going to press these open and then we’re going to sew them together right down the center. So here’s this one. Let me see how I lined up my seams. They look pretty good. There’s that one. We’ll see how this one, hey this one is pretty good too. Now my rule on pretty good is that you’ll look at it, if it bothers you like three times and your eye is going right to that, you know what you consider to be a mistake then you fix it. But if it doesn’t, if you have to search to find it, let it go, let it go. Finished is better than perfect. Alright so now did you see what I did right there, I folded them on top of each other just like this. Just like that. We’re going to sew them right down the side. Alright line up my quarter of an inch. Make sure those seams are lining up. Now sometimes if you have one that’s just a little bit bigger on one side you can just kind of fudge it and make sure it works. There we go. But that’s where your quarter of an inch matters. If your quarter of an inch is good you’re not going to have any of those problems where it’s like just a little bit off. You won’t have any of those. Alright I’m going to press this now. And it’s so cute. And this is our granny square block.

Now traditionally these blocks end up with whole white triangles all the way around them and you have to trim them. When you trim them you’re able to keep your quarter of an inch, you’re going to lose that quarter of an inch on our block. Our block is a gentler granny. Let’s look at it. So see right here, you’re going to lose your points doing it this way. But I think that the technique is so cool that it lends itself to just giving it a try. You know if you don’t mind losing some of those points. So then what I did was put it together. Let me just show you. So I took a block like this. I measured my block and then I cut my sashings the same size. So we’re going to put our sashing out here. Now because these are kind of on the bias they may get a little wonky. So your sashing is really going to stabilize your block for you. So what I do when I put a sashing on is I make sure that my sashing is always on the top. And see how this is just a hair longer right here. What I’m going to do is I’m going to be able to put this bigger part on the bottom and the feed dogs are going to take in more fabric. And it’s just going to make that fit. So watch how that happens. I’m going to go right on here and I’m just going to sew along and I kind of keep ahold of that top sashing. And it just, it just matches up. So here let me press this open so you can see how, you saw the little difference between the, the little points. So then see how you lose your little points right here but that just doesn’t bother me. I just think that works out great and it works out great. And our sashing now fits up perfectly. So then you’re just going to sew a row where you sew a sashing in between each row like this you’re just going to go along. And we have four across here with our sashing. Now this piece is just one straight piece of 2 ½ that of 2 ½ inch sashing. And then again every row so it’s just going to have them. You’ve got one, two, three, four, by one, two, three, four, five, so four by five, that’s 20 blocks. And let me see what size does this quilt make, it’s 65 by 78. And so it’s a pretty good size quilt and it’s a lot of fun. And I just think it takes that granny square, that traditionally has been really labor intensive and just makes quick work of it and makes it easy and fun. So I’m calling it Turn About Granny because we took those squares we put them together, we cut them, we turned them about and sewed them back together to make our Granny Square. So we hope you enjoyed this tutorial from the MSQC.

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