This block is traditionally known as 'Road to Oklahoma'
but since I reversed the placement of the lights and darks,
We are taking the backroads with our scraps!
After finishing my Scrappy Sister's
Choice Quilt, I still
had lots of leftover 2 1/2" squares and strips,
And I still felt compelled to do something more to deplete them! Along
with the strip bins Ive got....I have a few stackable
drawers with"small junk"...good sized pieces that wouldn't really be
long enough for a strip, but still good chunks of stuff...
left over setting triangles, bigger pieces left from other quilts,
partial borders (pieces maybe 5" X 7" for example)...
Also in there were all the other bazillion leftover y2k swap
charm squares...I finished my Millenium Quilt a
but I swear I swapped enough 3" squares for 5 quilts. And...very FEW of
the squares are a true 3"
which is why they sat for so stinking long. I didn't know what to do
Since there are alot of single 2 1/2" squares in each block
this quilt, I decided to bite the bullet and trim down all those
remaining y2k charm squares, and the other little pieces into 2
1/2" squares or 2 1/2" X 4 1/2" rectangles.
I also started a bin of 2" scrappy squares to use as leader/enders for
four patches when starting and stopping chain piecing.
I love how this cuts down on the thread waste, and tangled thread ends
everywhere. Freebie 4 patches are alot of fun!
Oklahoma Backroads Block:
Here we go!
For each 8" block you will need:
(4) 21/2" X 4 1/2" DARK rectangles
(4) 2 1/2" X 2 1/2" DARK squares
(8) 2 1/2" X 2 1/2" LIGHT squares.
Some of my 'darks' are more medium in nature...but I like the look it
gives the quilt..
as long as the darks contrast from the lights enough to tell which is
The first pic above shows the 4 dark rectangles with two diagonal
chains of 4 squares each:
Darks going from the bottom left to top right, Lights going from the
top left to bottom right.
Color value placement is really important. All the blocks must have
lights/darks in the same order so your chains will go the right way
when you twist and turn your blocks into the quilt layout.
The second picture..is the EXACT SAME, only I have taken 4 light 2 1/2"
squares and placed them upside down on top of each rectangle where they
will be sewn into the star points.
This is where the tricky part comes...because the top/bottom rectangles
will have the light squares sewn corner to corner in one direction, but
the right and left side rectangles will have their squares sewn on the
diagonal in the opposite direction. You need two 'uphill' peaks and two
'downhill' peaks. I'll show you what I mean as we start sewing!
Chain piecing this block:
Start by taking the pairs of squares that make the 4 patch center of
the block...right sides together, stitch the top two 4 patch squares,
and without cutting the thread, run the second pair through
as well. You can see the little 2" squares that I am using for
leader/ender squares behind the presser foot. This solves so much
thread waste and tangling...I use the spring snips to snip
between the chained pieces. Still do not break the thread! (at this
point I loosen my seam guide and swing it out of the way because we are
going to do the diagonal corners now....
Start with the top rectangle..align the square on top of it as shown,
and sliding it under the foot at the angle shown above, stitch from
corner to corner across the light square. If it helps you, you can draw
a pencil line first so you have a line to sew on. I just aim and shoot!
Now take the BOTTOM rectangle that has the square aligned in the
corner...without moving the square out of place, turn it so it is
aligned at the same angle as the first rectangle you just
sewed...stitch corner to corner.
Now for the side rectangles:
The side rectangles need to have the triangles sewn on in the opposite
angle. So take a side rectangle, leaving the square where it is placed,
and angle it the opposite way as shown above. Stitch from corner to
corner. Repeat with last remaining rectangle, having it angle the same
way as the previous one. You will have the top and bottom slanting one
way, the right and left sides slanting the opposite way.
After this last rectangle is sewn....I slip another pair of 2"
leader/ender squares through the machine and clip the threads
just behind the presser foot at the last rectangle.
Clip between all units, and trim the excess seam allowance on the
The second picture above shows the rectangles after
trimming...two uphill, and two down hill!
Press the seams towards the light triangles.
Here they are pressed:
At the beginning of your chain piecing you also had the two
halves of your center 4 patch! Press these seams towards the dark,
place right sides together and stitch the center seam. Press the 4
Once this is done, we can lay out the whole block so it is ready for
Now is it making sense why we needed to have the side rectangle's
triangles opposite than the top and bottom rectangle's triangles?
This way the triangles can point in towards each other Giving that nice
diagonal look to the block.
It might be a bit tricky to lay this out, so watch your placement
Also watch the placement of which way your lights/darks are going in
the center 4 patch.
Keep the lights going one way, and the darks the other!
Assemble pieces into rows, and stitch rows together to complete one
I am having fun with these blocks! And there is more than one way to
lay them out...try straight furrows..
.or lay them out traditionally like I have here....16 blocks on the
floor so far!
I'm not sure how big I'm going to make this quilt....all I know is I
have shoeboxes full of 2 1/2" squares in lights and darks, and another
shoebox of dark 2 1/2" X 4 1/2" rectangles...all from my scraps! I'll
just keep making blocks until I can't make anymore and it is big enough
for someone's bed. *Ü*
or Comments? I would love to hear from you!! Bonnie@Quiltville.com
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