Friday, November 15, 2013

Are You Really in the Ditch? Or Are You Just Riding on the Shoulder?

This variation of a log cabin block is quite dramatic with assorted colors alternating with solid black strips. Each quarter of the block is made individually by starting with a small black square and adding strips on only two sides of the square.  The four quarters are then joined to made the complete block.

In this case, I chose to quilt by stitching in the ditch. There is enough movement happening.  I didn't feel that I had to add more with the quilting.

Often we, as quilters are taught, press the seam allowances to one side or the other.  When we attempt   to stitch in the ditch, we try to stay on the "non-seam allowance" side of the seam. 
We make our best effort to ride the shoulder!

By pressing the seam allowances open, not only does the seam lie flatter but we can actually stitch in the ditch of the opened seam allowance. Our stitches become truly invisible. (Yes, the quilting has been completed in the close-up photo.)

My pillow top quilted with invisible stitches in the ditch.

Another pillow to add to my collection. 
I love the drama of the black vs. color!

May you be blessed with a bright and sunny day.

My pattern "Pizza Box
uses these blocks and
is available for purchase 
Linked to:


  1. It is flatter and easier to quilt...quilting in the ditch is the hardest form to keep straight to me. Of course when you press open, then quilt along the seam you are quilting on the threads holding the piecing together, right? I could be wrong...

  2. No LeeAnna, you are not wrong. You are quilting on the stitches that hold the seam together. The problem I've found with pressing the seam allowance to one side is that when you stray unto that folded seam allowance, it is quite obvious.
    Also, with my machine, I experimented with the different feet and found the one with a center line that I could line up with my seam line worked the best. On my Pfaff, it is called a fancy stitch foot.

  3. Yeah....this is a wonderful striking pieced pattern that is simple enough for even me to do!! Thank you!!!

  4. We love things that look complex but are in reality quite simple. Another way to make two pillows is to make two large courthouse steps blocks (log cabin variation), cut them into quarters and rearrange to create two blocks.


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