Orange Peel Quilt-Along: Layout + Prepping Blocks

Orange Peel Quilt-Along!

As we established yesterday, we (ahem-me-ahem) aren’t all ready to start laying out our blocks just yet. But those that are can start planning their final layout and prepping their blocks for assembly.

We aren’t actually going to discuss layout – that’s totally up to you, of course. My only advice is to just keep playing with them until you’re happy! Depending on how you want to organize the next steps, you may choose to lay out your quilt first, then pile each row up separately and trim from those piles. I myself am working with a million blocks, so it’s probably simpler for me to just trim them all in a big heap, then worry about layout. So have a think about what will work best for you, and when you’re ready, here’s how we’ll trim each block:

First, press each block well, making it all nice and crispy neat.

OPQA - Trimming blocks

Now we’ll actually trim! If you happen to have one or if you decided to splurge (which I did, because jeeeez, 196 blocks, people!), this will be simplest with a 5.5″ square ruler. If you don’t have that exact size, use another ruler that is at least 5.5″ on each side, this will make it easier to trim two sides at a time and properly line up your peel.

OPQA - Trimming blocks

Positioning these blocks for cutting is easy-peasy: just line up the diagonal marking on your square ruler with the points of your peel. You want to place it so that the ruler corners are positioned 1/4″ outside your peel points – this is your 1/4″ seam allowance.

OPQA - Trimming blocks

OPQA - Trimming blocks

You may notice that it’s not exact, and you’ll probably have a seam allowance that is slightly more than 1/4″. It’ll probably be more like 3/8″ if you center your peel along the diagonal of your square ruler. That’s totally ok – I planned that little tiny bit extra in from the beginning. If your peels really went exactly right up to the corner of each block, it’d be really easy to sew over the points if you do not have a precisely perfect 1.4″ seam allowance while sewing the blocks together. And who is really that precise all the time, I ask you?! It’s just a bit of safety space that will not effect the overall look of the peels meeting at their points.

OPQA - Trimming blocks

So, you’ve got your ruler positioned with the diagonal across the point, so trim trim trim! If you have the 5.5″ square ruler, you can trim on all sides at once, taking care to not to let the ruler move as you go. If you have a different size ruler, position the diagonal so that you can do two sides at once, then flip the block and do the same for the other two.

OPQA - Trimming blocks

That’s it! Trim every block in the same way and then come back Friday (the 28th) for tips on assembling the top!

3 Comments on Orange Peel Quilt-Along: Layout + Prepping Blocks

  1. Jenny
    November 24, 2014 at 21:38 (4 years ago)

    hmmmm….. I’m not quite ready either….. it’s all those other things I need to do each day that get in the way… lol Love that flying crane/stalk/goose fabric!! xo

  2. Andrée
    February 19, 2015 at 21:02 (3 years ago)

    I am finally prepping my peels. Did you say it was dull? Yikes. I’m about half done after 4 episodes of a 45 minute show. Actually I only messed up one to date. I hope I keep up that ratio!

  3. Ruth
    December 6, 2015 at 20:22 (3 years ago)

    I keep looking but I can not find the template for the orange peel quilt. Could you email me the link. Thanks. Love your quilt and I could so do this. Ruth


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