For this blog, I thought I would describe my seaming process for piecing the POTC (Patchwork of the Crosses) Blocks. I tried a variety of ways to construct the blocks before I settled on this method as my favorite. It is very similar to the way I piece hexagons.
You can see all of my current POTC blocks on my blog dated February 14, 2013.
1. This first picture shows how I piece the center cross pieces, and the frame that surrounds it. I sew them separately, then put them together in one continuous seam.
Leaving the last piece of the outline frame un-stitched, allows me to easily sew the center into the open frame. I have tried sewing the frame completely together and adding the cross section into the circle of the completed frame, but it doesn't work as well.
2. The second picture shows the backs of these pieced items.
To create the frame, I sew the corner pink pieces together first, then sew these corners to the green pieces. Notice how the bottom edges of the pink corner sections are sewn to the sides of the green pieces to form the frame.
3. The third picture shows a closeup of the back of the center cross. Notice how the center is swirled to make it lie flat. This is so easy to do with hand piecing because you naturally end the stitching where the seams meet, rather than stitching to the edge of the fabric.
When you work with the seam on the back, it wants to swirl like this.
4. This picture shows how the outside pieces will be added by sewing them together in pairs, then attaching to the frame. This may be done before, or after adding the center cross. However, it adds weight to the frame, so I find it easier to add the center first.
Note: I am finger pressing as I go. The iron has not been used yet.
5. The last picture shows the completed, pressed block.
Note that I am making a 24-piece POTC. You can make various sizes of this block, with less, or more pieces. For the 24-piece block, this is the end of the block fabrics. Next would be to add the joining fabric.
At this point all blocks are stored flat until I have made as many as I want to use in my quilt. I will take some of the blocks with me to a fabric store to audition for fabric I want to use to join them together. Then I will add that fabric all around these blocks and join them together to complete the quilt top.
I hope this helps explain my seaming process for the POTC's, and I hope it will inspire you to begin your own POTC.