Thursday, June 27, 2013

Card Trick Quilt Block Tutorial

As I've mentioned in previous posts, my local quilt shop (A Nimble Thimble) has a once a month event called Saturday Sampler.  Part of the event is participating in the BOM that the quilt shop is doing.  Each month we bring in our completed block from the prior month and we get our instructions and fabric for the next month's block.  By the end of the year, we will have 12 completed 12 inch blocks - enough to make a quilt and it only costs $5 for the whole year.  What a deal!!!  However, the instructions that we're given are very basic and really only include what size blocks to cut along with a diagram.  So for me, part of the challenge is figuring out how to make it.

 Our May block is called Card Trick.  Since I'm new to quilting, most of these blocks are new to me but so far, they have all been pretty straight forward.  But Card Trick was a bit tricky.  So to find a good tutorial, I headed to the internet.

And that's where I got stuck.  Our instructions said to cut 2 different size blocks but all the good tutorials I found that made any sense all used the same size blocks.  Plus there was a lot of "take color option 1 and color option 2 and blah blah.  Use color option 3 and color option 2 and blah blah."

So, I'm going to blame this on my fibro and lupus.  Instructions have to be really simple for me now.  If they aren't, I have trouble following them.  Also, if too many things are thrown at me at once, I can't follow.  They have to be simple, straightforward and not all muddled up with blah blahs.  Before I got sick, my thought processes were much faster - lightning speed :).  Now they are much slower and I have to think about how to do even very simple things.

I decided to sit down and write my own tutorial.  It has taken me a while to get it finished but I hope that someone will find it useful.  Please let me know if you find any mistakes in it.  Also, I would love for you to leave me a comment if you have a better (easier) way of doing it.

Here goes.

Card Trick Quilt Block Tutorial
For this tutorial, I am using 2 fabrics for the "cards".  A purple batik and an orange batik.  The white muslin fabric is the background fabric. 

Step 1.  From each fabric, cut one square that is 5 1/4" by 5 1/4".
From each fabric, cut two squares that are 4 7/8" by 4 7/8".
Step 2.  Use of the 4 7/8 purple squares, one orange 4 7/8 square and the 2 white 4 7/8 squares to make half square triangles. 
After cutting the squares into the HST's, you will have 2 orange and 2 purple.
Iron them flat.
Square up each HST and cut off the dog ears.
You should have one purple 4 7/8 inch square left and one orange 4 7/8 inch square left.  Cut each one in half diagonally.
Take your 3 squares that are 5 1/4 inch and cut each one in half diagonally and then in half again so that each square is quartered.

You will each up with 4 small orange triangles, 4 small purple triangles, 4 small white triangles, 2 large purple and 2 large white triangle plus the HST's you already made.

Using the 3 piles of smaller triangles, sew 2 white's to 2 purples.
Sew 2 whites to 2 oranges.
Sew 2 purples to 2 oranges.
When you sew these small triangles together, start at the square end, not the pointy end.  (that's a little tip I picked up in quilting class - thanks Sandy!!)
Iron them flat with seam to dark side (or wherever you want it).
Here are all of my little triangles.
Now sew the orange/purple triangle to the other orange/purple triangle.  Ta da!

Sew the purple/white triangles to the large orange triangles.
Sew the orange/white triangles to the large purple triangles. 
You should have this.

Square up each small block and cute off any dog ears.
Lastly, follow the block diagram to put each small block where it goes.  It should turn out looking like this.
And there you have it.  Clear as mud.
Good luck and please comment to let me know how yours turned out!
***I'm linking this blog post to the Sew Darn Crafty Linky Party.**


  1. Lol on "clear as mud". I think it's a great tutorial. Card trick is my very favorite block, but I have yet to make it. I will use your tute when I finally do it!

  2. Thanks LInda! Let me know how it turns out and how the tut went.

  3. I have fibro also and understand that slowed down thinking process. A sharp mind is a terrible thing to lose. I think you did a great job with your tutorial. Just went to a fair with a quilt barn and my daughter liked this pattern. I've found some tutorials where I just gave up reading. Your's is very clear. Thanks.

  4. quiltingB - I'm so glad it was clear. And you're right - a sharp mind is a terrible thing to lose. I have some fairly sharp days and then days where I can't concentrate enough to even watch tv.

    I hope your daughter likes the quilt.

  5. Your tutorial is very good, thanks for posting it. I understand about your health challenges, I have mitochondrial disease (you should look it up as many with fibro and lupus can actually have mitochondrial disease instead) they are misdiagnosed. There are lots of videos on youtube to check out. I wish you well.

  6. You did a really nice job on your tutorial! I have made a couple of card trick blocks quite a while ago. I was looking for a tutorial for making a bigger one as I ran across a picture of a quilt that someone had made using card trick blocks. When I made them before, I ended up wasting quite a bit of fabric and I didn't want to do that this time. Thanks for sharing!!!

  7. I guess I need a video to follow as a tutorial..(must be me) but it looks like you did a fine job for most....

  8. Love you tutorial but am having a hard time reading it because of all the color blocks on left side. When I printed it, it is illegible on the left side.

  9. Well thank goodness. I submitted my comment and a perfectly readable version appeared. I'm so happy!


Thanks so much for reading my blog and leaving a comment. I read every comment and try to reply to most of them although it may take me a couple of days - I'm a bit slow.