Learn how to make the Studio Star out of 2.5″ strips (also named Sister’s Choice and Father’s Choice) with Jenny Doan!
Get the supplies here: http://land.missouriquiltco.com/studio-star-quilt
Video Transcript (Downloadable PDF Here):
Hi everybody, it’s Jenny from the MSQC. And I’ve got such a fun project for you today. So this block right here that we’re talking about today, this is actually one of my favorite blocks. As a matter of fact, in my studio I have this metal star that hangs there. If you ever come to Missouri Star and come all the way back to my studio, you’ll see that hanging up on my back door. And so it’s one of my favorites and I was sitting looking at it the other day. And I thought “holy smoke” let’s do this block. So this is one of those old blocks and it has several different names. One is Sister’s Choice. One is Father’s Choice. Because I’m going to do it, we’re going to call it the Studio Star. We’ve made the blocks. And we’ve just set them right together. We have a first inner border. We’ve added a little fanciness to our border this time which is going to be fun to show you and walk you through. And it’s just, it’s just so quick and easy to make. You’re going to love it.
So to make this quilt, what you’re going to need is one roll of 40 strips. And we’ve used this 30’s Playtime by Chloe’s Closet for Moda. It’s just adorable. I love 30’s. We’re also using 3 ¼ of background fabric and that includes this first inner border here. And a lot of those are going to be cut into 2 ½ inch strips. For your outer border, you’re going to need just one yard and that’s all it is to make this quilt. This is going to give you a quilt that is 62 by 82 so it’s a great size.
Ok, so let me show you how to make this block. This block is actually made up of these two units which are super simple when you start dissecting a block, it becomes very easy to make. And I’m going to show you how to do that. So first you, you actually want to go through your roll. And you want to choose fabrics that are contrasting. I’ve got a couple here. A blue and a red. And contrasting just means that you’ll be able to see them apart from each other. We’re going to open these up because the trick for this is in the cutting. So we’re going to go ahead and open these up and lay these out like this. Let me move these other things out of the way here. And what we’re going to do first is we’re going to line these up. And we are going to cut, trim our selvedges off right here. Just a little trim, take those off. We’re going to cut one 2 ½ inch square right here. Out of both strips so see I’ve got them both cut. We’re going to set that aside. Then we’re going to cut four 4 ½ inch strips. So I’m just going to lay this on my mat and I’m going to count over. One, two, three, four and a half. And we’re going to do this four times. So here’s one. One, two, three, four and a half. Right here. Two. Three. One more. Make sure they stay lined up as you scoot them along. And we’ve got one, two, three, four and a half. Right here. And you’re going to set those aside. Now we have these other two pieces of our strips here. And what we’re going to need to do is we are going to take these and we are going to sew them onto a 2 ½ inch white strip. So each one of these is going to get sewn onto a 2 ½ inch white strip. And we’re going to go ahead and do that right now.
So I’m just going to set up my machine here. I’m over at a quarter of an inch and we’re just going to sew down here. You’re going to do this to both your strips. Now one of the fun things about this is that when you get this done, and this little bit of cutting on each strip, you’ll have enough stuff for two blocks. So that’s really cool. Alright and we’ll do it to the other strip as well.
Alright so now we have these two strips. And we have this leftover white piece right here. We’re going to trim off our leftover white piece. And out of this white piece you’re going to cut 2 ½ inch squares, as many as you can because you’re going to need eight of those for each block. So now we have our two strips right here. And let me cut them apart. And we’re going to line these up. This is going to make our two patches. And I’m just going to lay these on top of each other like this. And I always like, even if my edge is,is pretty straight, I like to clean it up again. So I’m going to lay these out here. I’m going to clean up my first little edge right here, just like that. Just trim a little tiny bit off. And then I’m going to come in and I’m going to cut 2 ½ inch blocks. It’s easier to cut these before you iron. That’s why I’m doing it now. And I’ll move these over here because we are going to the ironing board next. But you need to cut eight of these. So we’ve got one, two, three, four, five. Here we go, let’s move this back over here to the middle. Six, seven, and eight. And you can see why this is one of my favorite blocks because that’s all you have left. That’s all the waste. It just makes such a great use of your fabric.
And so now what we’re going to do is we’re going to iron these open. And I’m just going to go ahead and lay them out, set my seams a little bit, press them back. Like this. Press it back. Reds over here, blues over there. There we go. Alright. So now let me show you how to put a block together because this is really fun. The first thing we’re going to do is we are going to take one of our 4 ½ inch strips and one of our contrasting blocks here like this. And we’re going to make this unit. We’re going to sew this together. And we’re going to do that to four of these. So we want to separate all of these as well. Get my blues over here. And you can just take this pile to the sewing machine. You want to make sure that this red block is always on the same side. And so what I’ve done is I put my red block on the bottom. And then I’m just going to lay my blue block on the top and sew down like this. This is one of those that’s fun to chain piece because you can just sail along and just keep sewing as long as you’ve got them lined up how you want them. You can just sew along. So now I’ve gone ahead and chain pieced these four. I’m going to trim up, cut them apart. And we’re going to head to the ironing machine and press those open, right here. Put your, your 4 ½ inch rectangle piece on the top, roll them back. Just like that.
Then for each block what you’re going to do is you’re going to take eight of your 2 ½ inch squares, you can press a line or draw a line because weare going to snowball the corners. So we’re going to put, right here, I’m going to turn these blocks this way. We’re going to put one corner on this side and one corner on this side, ok, just like that. Sew diagonally, both corners. And it’s going to make this, it’s going to make this little block that’s going to look just like this. Let me just press these real quick. So it will help you to see better. So this is what our block is going to look like, just like that. Ok, so again you can take your whole stack over to the sewing machine. And I like to sew all of one side first and then all of the next side. So I’m going to sew all the blue ones first like this. This is an easier way to do it than, traditionally it was made with little tiny half square triangles. And this is just an easier way to do this, which you know me, I’m all about the easy. And then I’m just going to flip this around and sew again right on that line. There we go. And we’re going to do this to all of our blocks.
Alright so once you get your snowballed corners on, you’re going to trim those off just like this. You can use a rotary cutter as well. And then you’re going to press these open and I like to just kind of set those seams and then roll them back. And I have my other ones already done here. And so that’s what you need to do for this block.
The other block are these half, these little two patches which is already done as well. So what we’re going to do is we are going to take some of these two patches and we should have four of them. And we need to put this together with, to make this block right here. So what we’re going to do is we are going to, I’m going to move some of these things out of the way. We’re going to take two of these and we’re going to put them so that the two blues come together in the center. And then one of these blocks goes in the middle in between. So we’re going to do that on this side. And we’re going to do that on this side right here. So oop, color to the bottom. So that makes our little sashing strip right there. So let’s go ahead and sew those together, real quick. And I really do like to sew a row at a time. You know I want to make sure that I don’t get mixed up so I line them up so I can sew a row because I do get, I just get turned around so quickly. I know that doesn’t happen to anyone but me. Alright there’s our one row and now let’s do the next one. And again you keep your, your blue corners to the top and your color of your two-piece to the bottom. Alright, let’s press these out. I like always to iron from the top to make sure there’s no pleats or creases and then I flip it over and make those seams go the way I want them to. So if I want my seams going out, I press them out, just on the same as this one. There we go.
So now what we’re going to do is we need to make our center sashing. And again it’s as simple as anything because we use our same two patch pieces with the one 2 ½ block we cut to begin with that goes right in the center just like that. So let me go ahead and sew those together. This is just such a fun block. And one more. You’re just going to stagger them. You’re going to go color, white, color, white, color. Alright, and then this goes right in the middle. And we’re going to sew those down and this block is going to be done. Alright, one of the good things about these little blocks like this is that when you sew two squares together it gives you, every time you come to one, it gives you a chance to straighten up and re-line up again, which I like. Make sure your block stays nice and straight. Just match up those seams. Alright and we’re going to sew the other side to it. Now this is one of those blocks where when you sew a lot of seams together, you may get a seam that doesn’t, isn’t going the right direction and you sew over it. And all of a sudden, you have a little twist on the seam in the back. And so what, here’s how I handle that. I just clip it because I just want it to lay flat. Nobody’s going to look inside my quilt and see that because what we’re looking for is a nice flat block just like this. Makes a darling block. We have just the right amount to make one that’s the opposite color. And so every time you do this cutting, it makes two blocks.
So when we went to put these together, what we did and we just laid them right next to each other just like this and sewed them right together. So you can see here, they’re just sewn right together. We have one, two, three, four, five across seven down. And then we did the border. And because we had a couple of extra blocks, what we did was we put our 2 ½ inch border and a 2 ½ inch block in the corner of the first border. And then for the outer border we left one of those blocks apart and we took the little corner piece like that and set it up in the border just to give it a little more ooh, ahh, a little more pizzazz. So it just makes a really fun little border.It looks like you took a lot of extra time. And that’s just one of your quarter blocks. So I really had a great time making this one. I love the old blocks. I love the 30’s prints and I love that we were able to take this fun block that was hanging in my studio and make it available for you guys. So we hope you enjoyed this tutorial on the Studio Star from the MSQC.