When creating a quilt from blocks, it is not unusual to end up with blocks different in size from what the pattern calls for. Whether the blocks are too small, too large, or simply a bit crooked, it is important to square up the blocks, or to make the blocks square again. This creates a more uniform quilt top with professional-looking results.
Squaring up a quilt block is the solution to blocks that are a bit too large. Blocks that are smaller are a different story. Squaring up a block can be accomlished by using the following simple steps:
1. Carefully press the block: Be sure not to stretch the block, which causes the seams to bow. Ensure the seams’ blacks are flat, with no creases.
2. Lay the block on the cutting mat and check the size using a square or a ruler.
3. Sit the ruler on top of the block, and center the ruler on the block.
4. Trim the edges with a rotary cutter.
There are a variety of tools made to ease the process. Check out Annie’s Crafts for the best selection of aides for squaring up a block.
Of course, while in hte perfect world there is no need to square up blocks, the reality is you will probably need to square up once or twice. Try to avoid the need to square up a block by double-checking the measurements and keeping an accurate seam allowance. The more you practice, the better you will get at squaring up blocks. Make it a point to square up each block you create. You will notice a difference in your finished product, and the small effort will be worth the beautiful result.