Thrive Quilt Sew Along: Weeks 3 & 4: Blocks

In this week of the Thrive quilt sew along we sew our blocks together – included is a video tutorial and love of sewing tips! suzyquilts.com #sewing

My lovlies, we have arrived at everyone's favorite part (well, most everyone's favorite part) of the quilt-making process...the sewing! Can you believe it took us two weeks to start sewing during a sew along?

The wait is over and it's time to rev up those sewing machine engines. Is your pit crew ready? Is your foot hovering on that gas pedal? Don't let me hold you up any longer! GET GOING! Let's sew our Thrive quilts!


Sew Along LIVE Videos

If you would like to join me live to review each week's assignment, I will be hosting live video discussions to answer your questions each Wednesday evening at 7:30 CDT. I will try to go live both on Instagram and in the Suzy Quilts Patterns Facebook group.

If you would like to watch the Week 2 Instagram LIVE check it out here! Below is the LIVE video for Week 3. (FYI, I referenced wearing a blazer in a previous IG post, so...that's why I'm wearing the weird outfit. ha!)

In this week of the Thrive quilt sew along we sew our blocks together – included is a video tutorial and love of sewing tips! suzyquilts.com #sewing

Thrive Sew Along Weeks 3 & 4: Sew Your Blocks

Sewing the quilt blocks for the Thrive pattern is a simple, straight forward process which means it's the perfect time to practice your perfect pressing skills. Remember those skills we fine tuned during Weeks 3 and 4 of the Grow Sew Along?

Of course you do! But, just in case you don't, I filmed a video on how to use a tailor's clapper to get super flat seams. Check it out below!

I like to set up a sweet little pressing pod inches away from my sewing machine so I don't have to move very much. Sometimes I do stand and sew, though, so...that's really healthy of me πŸ˜‰

My pressing pod supplies include:

To get perfectly flat quilt blocks, press them with a wool pressing mat and a tailor's clapper | suzyquilts.com #quilting

Chain Piece, Snip, Press and Repeat

That's really all there is to it. Sew a little, snip a little, press a little and repeat! Do this for all of your blocks about 5 times and you're finished! Over the next two weeks we will sew all 41 blocks needed for a throw-sized Thrive quilt.

You can divide that work any way you like. In the schedule I suggested you sew 20 blocks one week and 21 blocks the next; however if you are making these blocks in batches by using this chain piecing method, it might make more sense to sew half of all 41 blocks during Week 3 and then finish the blocks in Week 4.

Tip #1: Chain piece.

Squares and rectangles – that's all you need to make these Thrive blocks, so I highly recommend stacking your pieces next to your machine and chain piecing each section together.

Chain piece fabric together to making your quilting faster! suzyquilts.com #quilting

Once you sew these pretties, you may not want to snip them apart – they are so happy and fun together! If you do finish your chain piecing happy dance and decide to snip this block garland into singles, I have a second tip for you...

Tip #2: Trim your seams.

If you are pressing your seams to one side, I suggest trimming away the darker fabric if you run into a scenario when you are pressing light fabric over dark fabric. Let me give you an example.

My two squares (e and c) are sewn together and the small rectangle (piece d) is sewn on top. I would prefer to press away from the bulky seam created by pieces e and c which means that half of piece d will be laying on top of a seam with dark plum fabric.

See the photo below... 

Trim quilt blocks so that darker fabrics do not show through lighter fabrics after quilting | suzyquilts.com #quilt

If I leave that as is, that tiny sliver of dark plum will show through the back of the light gray fabric and appear as a ghosted line once the quilt is sandwiched and quilted.

We do not want rogue ghost fabric. The solution? Peel back the light fabric and trim the darker fabric so that it is fully covered by the light fabric. Viola!

Trim quilt blocks so that darker fabrics do not show through lighter fabrics after quilting | suzyquilts.com #quilt

You don't need to trim a lot and it doesn't need to be perfect, but I promise this will give you a happier finished quilt. You also only need to do this if your are working with highly contrasting fabric that you know will create ghosting.

With the lavender quilt I'm making, I only need to trim this one section because the dark plum fabric is the only fabric that will create the ghosting effect. You can easily test this out by simply placing your dark fabric on top of some batting or a light surface and then placing your light fabric on top. Can you see the dark fabric through the light fabric?

In this week of the Thrive quilt sew along we sew our blocks together – included is a video tutorial and love of sewing tips! suzyquilts.com #sewing

You now have all of the tools to achieve superstar Thrive quilting status. Rock on, babycakes! Go forth and make the bestest, flattest, ghostless quilt blocks this world has ever seen!

In this week of the Thrive quilt sew along we sew our blocks together – included is a video tutorial and love of sewing tips! suzyquilts.com #sewing
In this week of the Thrive quilt sew along we sew our blocks together – included is a video tutorial and love of sewing tips! suzyquilts.com #sewing

Optional Meditation and Thrive Challenge

Week 3

Our optional meditation this week focuses on being gentle to ourselves. Before turning on your iron or sewing machine, pause for a minute to close your eyes and take some deep breaths. Listen to your body’s natural rhythm. Simply be in this moment.

Thrive Challenge: Last week we checked in on a neighbor or friend. This week, check in on yourself. No judgement. Be gentle. Be kind. If you need help or encouragement, don't be afraid to let someone know.

In this week of the Thrive quilt sew along we sew our blocks together – included is a video tutorial and love of sewing tips! suzyquilts.com #sewing

Week 4

This week, while taking some quiet moments to close your eyes and focus on your breath, also think about a way in which you are thriving. Reminder, the word thrive means to progress towards a goal despite circumstances. You can be thriving even if that progression feels slow.

Thrive Challenge: Move that body! Stretch, dance, walk, drop and do a few push ups – create some energy with your body.

In this week of the Thrive quilt sew along we sew our blocks together – included is a video tutorial and love of sewing tips! suzyquilts.com #sewing

The Week 3 Prize

Ready for another great prize? This week the online fabric shop, Sew Arts Center, is donating a custom quilt kit to the winner of Week 3! Pick ANY Suzy Quilts pattern and SAC will work with you to make your very own quilt kit! Plus you get the SQ pattern for free. πŸ˜‰

How to Win

  • Post a pic to Instagram. The photo prompt for Instagram this week is to post a picture of your progress on your quilt top. Use #ThriveQuiltSA in the caption.
  • You must have a public Instagram profile to participate.
  • Each photo posted is an entry and you can enter as many times as you want in a single week. Once the week is over, those posts do not count in the next week's giveaway. Every week we start fresh.
  • Your photo must be posted between 12:00 a.m. CT on Wednesday, July 15, 2020 and 1:00 p.m. CT on Tuesday, July 21, 2020. 
  • This prize is open internationally.
  • The winner will be picked randomly from all qualifying posts and announced at approximately 4:00 p.m. CT on Tuesday, July 21, 2020.

The Week 4 Prize

The winner of Week 4 gets FREE longarm quilting from one of my very favorite longarmers, Lilo, of Trace Creek Quilting! Batting, thread and quilting are fully covered for a throw quilt. What an amazing prize!

How to Win

  • Post a pic to Instagram. The photo prompt for Instagram this week is to post a picture of your progress on your quilt top. Use #ThriveQuiltSA in the caption.
  • You must have a public Instagram profile to participate.
  • Each photo posted is an entry and you can enter as many times as you want in a single week. Once the week is over, those posts do not count in the next week's giveaway. Every week we start fresh.
  • Your photo must be posted between 12:00 a.m. CT on Wednesday, July 22, 2020 and 1:00 p.m. CT on Tuesday, July 28, 2020. 
  • This prize is open internationally.
  • The winner will be picked randomly from all qualifying posts and announced at approximately 4:00 p.m. CT on Tuesday, July 28, 2020.
In this week of the Thrive quilt sew along we sew our blocks together – included is a video tutorial and love of sewing tips! suzyquilts.com #sewing

8 thoughts on “Thrive Quilt Sew Along: Weeks 3 & 4: Blocks

  1. Chloe Gafford says:

    Can we chain piece more than just the initial 2 squares? Or is chain piecing primarily for the beginning?

    • Suzy Quilts says:

      Great question! You can chain piece every section of these blocks! Once your first units are sewn, press the seams. After all of those units are pressed, chain piece the next piece of fabric to each of the units just created.

  2. Kerry says:

    Suzy, when using the clapper is there a preferred side of the block to use the clapper on ie. use it on the finished side or on the seamed side?

  3. Pingback: Thrive Quilt Sew Along: Week 1: Pick Your Fabric - Suzy Quilts

  4. Pingback: Thrive Quilt Sew Along: Week 6: Final Quilt Top - Suzy Quilts

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