Road Trip Quilt Along: Maryland [Part 1]

Hello road trippers!  Seat belts fastened?  We’re supposed to be heading to Maryland today, however, I’m writing this Thursday night and I’m about to take my sister out to celebrate the last days of her single life over a bottle of wine and it seems I won’t finish the entire block before tomorrow.  I’ll post Monday, but let’s get started today.

Maryland is a little tricky for a 12-inch block because it is essentially divided into a 5×5 grid.  Twelve does not divide very evenly by 5 so there will be a little bit of approximating going on here.  [By the way, if there are any more experienced quilters out there who have a better way of doing this, please let me know!]

[WARNING: Math ahead!  Proceed slowly!]

We are going to pretend that each of the 25 squares that this block breaks down into are 2-7/16 inches, square.  That means, with seam allowances, we will trim to 2-15/16 inches.  Thus, if all seam allowances are correct, the finished block with be 12-11/16 inches.  Since we trim to 12.5 inches, there will be an extra 3/16 inch we have to remove.  If you make your seam allowances just a hair larger than exactly 1/4 inch, the finished block will be even closer to the desired size.

Cutting directions

You can start out by cutting out (8) squares from your background fabric that are 2-15/16 inches.

Center: (1) 2-15/16 inch square

For the four (4) paper pieced sections: middle piece: (4) 2-15/16 squares
For the background: (8) 3-inch x 1.75-inch rectangles.

Half square triangles: Four (4), 3.5-inch squares background fabric
Four (4), 3.5 inch squares, accent fabric (the outer star points).

Quarter square triangles: (1) 3.75-inch square (to match center); (1) 3.75-inch square to match the star points; (2) 3.75-inch square.

Part 1 Directions

We are going to make the 4 paper pieces parts of this block today.

To make the template for the paper pieced portion, first draw out a 2-7/16-inch square on freezer paper (or regular paper if you don’t have freezer paper).  Fold the square in half to find the center.  Draw a line from the bottom left corner to the center of the top line.  Draw a line from the bottom right corner to the center of the top line.

Add a 1/4 inch seam allowance all the way around this paper pieced portion.

Iron the freezer paper to the fabric that will be the center of this portion of this section.  [If you don’t have freezer paper and you are using regular paper, you can just pin.]  The wrong side of the fabric will be ironed to the waxy side of the freezer paper.

Fold the paper back along one of the diagonal lines and trim the fabric to 1/4 inch beyond the fold.

Line up one of the 3-inch x 1.75-inch background pieces with the edge.  Sew very close to the paper without actually piercing the paper with the needle.

Flip the paper back open and iron the background piece open away from the center.

Repeat for the other side.  Fold the paper back along the diagonal line.  Trim to 1/4 inch away fro the fold.  Line up the background fabric with the raw edge.  Sew very close to the paper in the fold without piercing the paper.

Repeat for all four pieces and trim to 2-15/16 inches.

Maryland quilt block part 2 here.

9 replies
  1. Debbie J.
    Debbie J. says:

    Hope you are having a great time and I’m sure you are.

    Thanks for posting part one during your busy trip! Glad its only part one, so I have plenty of time to work on it. It looks like fun!

  2. Monica
    Monica says:

    Hey Em, So I’m not even done with the first block, but at least I have most of the fabric cut out for it! What exactly is the advantage to paper piecing blocks? For accuracy? Why couldn’t you just cut out those trianges and then so the rectangles to them without the paper? (Not that I want to try it because I already am somewhat lost.) Hope you’re having fun in IL!!

    • sewingbymoonlight
      sewingbymoonlight says:

      For accuracy, yes, but also because I only wanted to make one template. If you wanted, you could make a template for the inner portion with seam allowances and one for the outer portion with seam allowances. Then you would all the pieces individually and cut them out.

  3. Shena
    Shena says:

    I don’t suppose it would be allowed for me to just skip all the difficult math and just make a larger, 15″ block, or a smaller, 10″ block? I guess I’m not very good at following the rules. 🙂

  4. Kati R.
    Kati R. says:

    Yeah, I would agree with Shena and make the block into 10″ and put a border around it. I’m not sure I would go into 1/16 inch increments 🙂 That is why they invented the metric system.

  5. Kate C.
    Kate C. says:

    I think you’re maybe missing part of the instructions on how to draw the triangle on your paper for the paper piecing part. I assume the top point of the triangle is in the exact middle of the top?

    And monica, I think the paper piecing is better because it would be probably tough to cut out the triangles with the correct angles and side length, but I’ve never done this block before either!

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] Virginia, our road trip takes us north into Maryland. During last year’s road trip, we made a Maryland Star, so this year, we’ll try something different. I’ve seen this called “Maryland […]

  2. […] so you can check that out for another option.  We started with the four paper pieced sections in Maryland Part 1.  Now, let’s finish the […]

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