This is a great project for using up a lot of leftovers both for the backing and the batting.
For each block you will need an 11 inch square of batting and an 11 inch square of backing fabric (remember this will be the backing of your quilt so use good quality fabric although they don’t all have to be the same fabric, scrappy works well here).
Low to regular loft batting works best because the seams can get thick as you’re assembling the blocks.
Backing may be pieced as shown above and so can your batting. Jan Mac shows how to pin and use pieces of batting on her tutorial here but I prefer to piece my together with a quick zigzag and I do a bunch of blocks at one time so my batting squares are all ready to go.
Place your backing wrong side up and place your batting square over it. Begin piecing your strings on top. It is NOT necessary to have a center string of any particular color.
Continue adding strips and pressing in between — BE aware of your batting fiber content and set your iron accordingly. In this case, I’m using a 100% cotton batting and my strings stick to it pretty well so pressing is only needed if I have a wrinkled string.
Please use your judgement here — we want blocks that are assembled well so press if needed.
When I get to the corners, I use triangle shape pieces or larger strings. You don’t want to end up with tiny pieces on the corners once the block is trimmed to size.
Square the block to 10.5 inches. I always trim my blocks from the back and you can see where my backing fabric scooted a little during piecing so I’m going to trim carefully so that when I’m done, the backing comes all the way to the edges of the block.
I trim a small amount from two sides,
And then flip my block, line up the 10.5 inch mark in the bottom left corner,
and trim the other two sides.
And here’s my finished block.
HeartStrings QAYG Blocks (PDF file of the above directions for download and printing)
There are several methods for assembling the blocks, check out these 3 links.
Jan Mac’s tutorial for assembling QAYG blocks
Keryn’s tutorial for assembling QAYG blocks
Setting the blocks in a basketweave manner will help decrease the bulk in the seams and is easier to join.
Instructions for assembling QAYG blocks in a basketweave setting as shown below. (PDF file)