For this post, I want to show you my process as I determine how to convert the blocks so that I can cut them with my Accuquilt Go! Cutter. The first thing I do is color my block with colored pencils so I have a better visual of which color goes where and how many of each I need. Besides, I enjoy coloring!
I’m sure a lot of people are able to look at block cutting instructions and determine immediately what sized dies they need, but I work better visually so I draw my block out on graph paper. The blocks finish to 12” so I use one square to represent one inch. After drawing it out, I color the block again with my colored pencils and compare it to the block in the pattern (note, the blocks in the pattern are NOT drawn to scale).
At this point, I can easily determine the finished size of each of the units. This block has three separate units. The pink squares finish at 2”, the half square triangles also finish at 2” and the flying geese units are 4” x 2” finished. The easiest way to figure out what dies you will need is to look at the Accuquilt catalog. They have a table that lists the Qubes and the dies.
If you look at the bottom of the page, you can see that a flying geese unit consists of dies #4 and #5. For this block, the flying geese need to finish at 4” x 2” so by looking at the chart, I know that I need the #4 and #5 dies from the 8” Qube. To make the half square triangle units that finish at 2”, that is also the #5 dies from the 8” Qube. To make the 2” squares, I will need the #2 die also from the 8” Qube. My next step was to make a chart so I know how many I will need of each unit. Remember that you will need to make two blocks, so double the amount needed for one block!
The gray triangles will be pieced with the white ones and since they are the same shape, I made a note so I could cut them with right sides together so they will be all ready to sew as soon as they are cut! From here, I measure my dies, add a half inch to the measurement and cut 6 layers at a time until I have the correct number of each shape. Fast and accurate! Here is a photo of 24 quarter square triangles (die #4) cut in in seconds!
With the Accuquilt dies, you also eliminate the extra step of trimming the units. Even the dog ears from the half square triangles are cut before you sew them!
After cutting, it is just a matter of sewing your half square triangles and flying geese together and then sew those together with your squares to make the blocks. I will make pressing notes on my graph paper as I go so I get seams to nest together or I will press seams open to eliminate bulk. Remember to constantly compare your block to the picture so you have everything oriented correctly. Yes, I did have to do some unsewing on this block, but thankfully, I caught it right away.
I hope this gives you a little understanding of the process that I use to convert my blocks. It really goes quickly and I love the accuracy that I get with Accuquilt!
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