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Sunday, February 20, 2011

Civil War Remembered - Block 8

Cotton Boll

We are in Week #8 of Barbara
Brackman's Civil War Quilt.

I took photos as I made the block
with a few tweaks to aid in precision.

Cut 4 - 2 7/8" squares and cut on diagonal.

Cut 4 rectangles 3 3/8" x 7".
Use the same fabric for all 4 or
2 of one and 2 of another, the
choice is yours.
On the back, draw a line in the center.

Place the diagonal line on a square
ruler on top of the drawn line and
the point of the angle on the edge
of the fabric.  Cut excess triangles off.

Place long edge of small triangles
right sides together on long edge of
rectangles.  Overlap the point of the
triangle by 1/4" and sew.  Repeat to
the other side.

This is an important step for
precise points.  Press the triangle
seams of 2 rectangles to the inside
and the seams of the other 2 rectangles
to the outside.  If using rectangles of
the same color, just do 2 and 2.  If  using
2 different fabrics, press Fabric A
seams to the inside and Fabric B
 seams to the outside.

Square up the pointed edge
of rectangle as shown.

Now square up opposite side
of rectangle, unit should measure
to a 4 1/2" square.

Layout units as shown and sew
together in 2 rows.  Now this is
where the pressing of the seams
comes into play.  As you pin the seam
before sewing, take care to "lock" the
seams together at the mid section
of the seam.

By pressing and taking care you
will get very precise points.

On the two units press the
seams in opposite directions.

Sew final seam of block and
press seam open to reduce bulk.

Square block to 8 1/2".

Here is one I did using the
same fabric for the rectangles.

Check out everyone's blocks at:


  1. Hello, I am very proud: I did it like your description!!! Even pressing open the last seam!! Your instruction is very good, thanks for sharing it with other bloggers!!
    Greetings from Regina

  2. Fantastic instructions!! There are quite a few different methods for making this block. It's interesting to read everyone's blog and learn new tricks:-)

    I might just make one more of the Cotton Boll, using your method - I like to try lots of different piecing methods... it's a great way to learn!

    Sweltering weather here in Queensland today.... so what am I doing? ... housework:-( I'd rather be sewing! We have been promised an early storm... hope so!

    Cheers from Helen

  3. Thank you so much for the great tutorial. You saved me alot of time.
    Sue in New Zealand ( Down Under)


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