Last week, I talked about what a directional print fabric was and how to use them in some units. If you missed that post, find it here. In this post I will show using a directional print in flying geese units that will be used to make a star block with the prints all going in the same direction. I will also show a “playful” way to use some of these prints. Still a chance to enter the drawing for my pattern, Country Dance!
Directional Print in a Star Block
Below are the fabrics I am using in this block:
As you can see, I will only be concerned with the grey fabric since my tan fabric has a print that is not directional. The secret to using directional fabrics for flying geese is that the directional print will go in the opposite direction from how it was placed after stitching and folding the corners back. For example, if you position the directional print horizontally, the print will be vertical after stitching. The photos below show this:
As you can see in the second photo, when I lay the fabric piece with the directional print going horizontally, the print is going vertically after stitching the diagonal seam and pressing the corner open (as shown in the last photo).
To finish the flying geese unit, I need to lay the next square face down on the other side of the rectangle with the print going horizontal so when done, the print will then be vertical like the first side.
Here is the finished geese unit:
But now here is where you have to pay close attention. If you are using the directional print for the center square of the star and if you make all 4 flying geese with the print going vertical… this will happen:
The geese units on two sides of the star unit will not have the directional fabric matching the other pieces in the block. To remedy this, two of the flying geese units need to have the print going vertical and two flying geese units need to have the print going horizontal if you want the all the print going in the same directional when the star block is done.
As you can see by the second photo, the geese with the print in the horizontal direction is placed on the side and now the star block has all the print going in the same direction:
Random Directional Print Fun!
Here’s a fun way to use a directional print. Binding! Take a fabric with a directional print and cut the strips on the bias for a fun diagonal stripe binding! In the photos below, I show how I cut strips on the bias and after piecing them together, the stripe on the fabric now goes in a diagonal direction for a whole new look.
Finally… I don’t mind directional prints going whichever way they end up when I’m pulling scraps for a scrap quilt. Here’s a block where the green print has the stripe going both horizontally and vertically. I think it adds some “whimsy” to scrap quilts.
And in this block, the tan print wavy stripe radiates in all directions. Look at the corner squares of the block. I pull the stripes all together by having the stripe go in a different direction as your eye goes clockwise around the block.
To get all those stripes to go in the same direction would take a bit more dedicated fussy cutting. But, it could be done. I just don’t bother in a scrap quilt. Now in a 3 color quilt, where every block was the same 3 colors, I may take the time to fussy cut and piece to get everything going in the same direction.
So, that’s it for my directional print tutorial. Leave a comment and ask any question you may have. There is still time to enter the drawing for my pattern, Country Dance.
The drawing will be on Monday, March 29th. **We have a winner… Congrats, June!**