Up next is the church dash block. This block has been around for a while and is incredibly versatile. It has gone by a multitude of other names according to Quilting in America, including but not limited to the following: Broken Plate, Double Monkey Wrench, Double T (published in Hearth & Home), Dragon's Head (published in Woman's World), Fisherman's Reel, Hens and Chickens, Hole in the Barn Door, Indian Hammer, Joan's Doll Quilt, Lincoln's Platform, Love Knot, Ludlow's Favorite, Old Mill Design (published in the The Farmer's Wife), Picture Frame, Puss in the Corner, Quail's Nest, Sherman's March (published in Capper's Weekly), Shoo Fly, and Wrench.
Background - (4) 2.5"x4.5"
Background - (2) 5"x5"
Print 1 - (4) 2.5"x4.5"
Print 1 - (2) 5"x5" OR Print 2 - (2) 3"x3"
Background - (1) 4.5"x4.5" OR Print 3 - (1) 4.5"x4.5"
Background - (4) 1.5"x2.5"
Background - (2) 3"x3"
Print 1 - (4) 1.5"x2.5"
Print 1 - (2) 3"x3" OR Print 2 - (2) 3"x3"
Background - (1) 2.5"x2.5" OR Print 3 - (1) 2.5"x2.5"
We will be making 2-in-1 HSTs. There are many tutorials online for 4-in-1 HSTs, perfect HSTs, HSTs using rulers, or other methods. Use whatever methods works best for you. We need to make 4 HSTs total for this block, ending at 4.5" square.
Mark your 5" (3") background pieces along the diagonal. Pair each with one of the 5" (3") print squares.
Pin, pin, pin. You will be sewing on the bias again, so it helps to have a few extra pins, especially at the beginning and end of the seam to help guide the fabric.
Now sew a 1/4" seam on either side of the center line, being careful not to distort your fabric. Carefully cut the HSTs apart along the center line.
Once cut, press the seams open to reduce bulk (or to the dark side if you use a bloc lock ruler to trim HSTs). I use a 4.5" square ruler to trim. Line the diagonal (45 degree) line of the ruler up with the center seam and trim first two sides, then spin it around and trim the other two sides.
As you can see, there's not a lot to trim off, but just enough that you'll end up with perfectly sized HSTs every time.
Next lay out your block. I like to fan my directional print so they are pointing in towards the center. I chose to fussy cut my center piece, but you can also use your background fabric for this piece as well.
Pin your side pieces to the background pieces, chain piece, and press. Double check to make sure they are 4.5" square, trim a bit if necessary.
Reassemble your block to make sure all the pieces are pointing in the correct direction.
Now, take your center pieces and flip them on top of the left pieces, sew, press, and reassemble. Then add the right sides to the strips you've already pieced.
Finally, sew first the bottom strip to the middle strip and then add the top strip. Remember to pin at each seam. One final press and you're done.
Completed Block Size:
Queen Sized: 12.5"x12.5"
Baby Quilt: 6.5"x6.5"
To make a wonky Churn Dash:
Background - (9) 4.5"x4.5"
Background - (8) 4.5"x4.5"
Print 1 - (1) 4.5"x4.5"
Background - (9) 2.5"x2.5"
Background - (8) 2.5"x2.5"
Print 1 - (1) 2.5"x2.5"
Lay out your squares in a 3x3 grid.
Draw a straight line at least 1/4" from the edge to use as a guide to sew along. Pair each block with a piece. You will be creating triangles in the corners and strips in the center sections.
Start with the strips.
Do the flip test before sewing. First lay the piece you will be adding where you think it will work on the background. Then fold it over roughly along the line you drew and see if all the background is covered.
If it is, go ahead and sew the piece, if it is not, adjust and do the flip test again. Once you have sewn the piece, do the flip test again, this time along the actual seam. If the background is not fully covered by the piece, rip out and sew again.
Once you are satisfied with the placement, trim the background 1/4" from the seam.
Then press the pieces. Next, trim the block so it is once again 4.5" (2.5") square.
Do the same thing with the triangle pieces, but only cover one corner, instead of a full side.
Lay out the pieces again and make sure you like the placement.
Sew together like the previous version, first by joining the three pieces in each row into a single strip and then sewing the strips together to form the block.
Several other options:
- Fussy cut the center square.
- Create a fill in block for the center square.
- Add smaller strips to the side pieces.
- Create improv strips for the side pieces and/or the corners.
- Make flying geese blocks to replace the side pieces.
- Play with placement of the prints and background.
- Invert the background and prints to create an inverted churn dash.
- Google churn dashes and you'll get a host of other ideas, this block really is quite versatile.