Road Trip Quilt Along: Montana

Ah, Montana.  No place I’d rather be in the summer than Bozeman, Montana.  My husband and I stayed out there for 7 weeks 2 years ago when he was beginning his Masters degree.  This year, he was finishing up and we spent another two weeks staying in Bozeman.

Being in one place for bit gave some time to explore, and we did a bit of hiking in the area.  My 4-year-old hiked the very steep M Trail (up to a large letter “M” on the side of a mountain) all by herself.

Quite the intrepid hiker, this one is!

We also visited Hyalite Canyon, which is just gorgeous: reservoir nestled between the mountains, wooded trails, hidden mountain lakes.  It’s a treasure.

We hiked a 4 miles trail that gave us views of 5 different waterfalls, and we have taken the trail for its entire 10 miles, we would have seen 11 in total, according to our guide book.

I took some creative license and slightly redesigned this block from the original source.  The source tutorial for the Montana block gives instructions to finish a 9-inch block.  For a block of this size, this 9-patch design works well.  For the patches that are divided in thirds, each third finishes at 1 inch.

However, I am writing these instructions for a 12-inch finished quilt block.  Thus, each of the 9 patches are 4 inches and those that are divided into thirds finish at somewhere between 1-5/16 and 1-3/8.  More complicated quilt math.  Not to mention, with the original design, the 4 flying geese are not the standard size, so they would have to be paper pieced.

If you care to stick with the original plan, 9 equal square patch, you go for it.  However, for some simpler quilt math and to finish this block without paper piecing, I just made one little change.  I decreased the center square from 4-inches finished to 3-inches finished.  Each of the corner half square triangles will now be 4.5 inches square and the sections even with the center piece finish at 3 inches x 4.5 inches.

Cutting direction for Montana quilt block

Center 9 patch
(5) 1.5 inch squares [fabric 1]
(4) 1.5 inch squares [fabric 2]

Flying Geese
(1) 4.25 inch square [fabric 1]
(4) 2.5 inch squares [fabric 2]

Extension from flying geese
(4) 3.5 inch x 2 inch rectangles [fabric 3]
(4) 3.5 inch x 2 inch rectangles [background fabric]

Half square triangles
(2) 5.5 inch squares [fabric 1]
(2) 5.5 inch squares [background fabric]

Assembly instructions for Montana quilt block

Create the half square triangles.  Use the four 5.5 inch squares.  More detailed directions for half square triangles can be found with the Maryland block.  Trim these HSTs to 5 inches.

Create four flying geese.  Use the 4.25 inch square of [fabric 1] and the four 2.5 inch squares of [fabric 2].  More detailed instructions for my preferred method of making flying geese can be found in the Virginia block tutorial.  Trim these geese to 3.5 inches x 2 inches.

Create the center 9 patch block.  Use the 1.5 inch squares.  Trim the finished piece to 3.5 inches square.

Put together the extensions of the flying geese.  Sew each of your flying geese together with one each of a 3.5 inch x 2 inch rectangle of [fabric 3] and one 3.5 inch x 2 inch rectangles of [background fabric].  Trim the piece to 3.5 inches x 5 inches.

Assemble the block.  Arrange your nine sections as shown below.  Sew the pieces into rows.  Sew the rows together.

Montana quilt block!  I apologize for the poor lighting in my sewing room at night, but this is all I have for now since I just finished this a little while ago.  I’ll try to get a better picture tomorrow as well as a photo of all the blocks we’ve finished so far.  It’s raining, though, so that depends on whether I can find a dry spot outside or not.

4 replies
  1. Shena
    Shena says:

    This is a really nice block. I think I might resize it make it into a 15″ block, since the original block is based on thirds, and that will translate easily to 15″.

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