Today let's look at this lovely Swing in the Center quilt block. Well, Swing in the Center is one of the names it goes by - there's also Dumbbell Block, Mrs. Roosevelt's Favorite, and Roman Pavement! No matter the name, it is a pretty block. Here I've made it with three colors and a light background. Let's get started!
Fabric Requirements for a 12" Finished Swing in the Center Quilt Block
- Light/Ivory: 24 - 2.5" squares, and 4 - 2.5" x 4.5" rectangles
- Dark 1/Green: 4 - 2.5" x 4.5" rectangles
- Dark 2/Blue: 5 - 4.5" squares
- Dark 3/Red: 8 - 2.5" squares
Using one of the Dark 2/Blue 4.5" squares and four Light/Ivory 2.5" squares, make a Square in a Square block for the Center unit. You can find a tutorial for a basic Square in a Square block at https://fabric406.com/blogs/fabric406-blog/how-to-sew-a-basic-square-in-a-square-block
The Corner units are basically the same as the Center unit except that one corner isn't snowballed. Using the remaining Dark 2/Blue 4.5" squares, and 12 Light/Ivory 2.5" squares, sew together four Corner units.
Flying Geese Units:
Using the four Dark 1/Green 2.5" x 4.5" rectangles, and eight Light/Ivory 2.5" squares, make four Flying Geese units as shown in the picture below. You will find my tutorial for sewing a Flying Geese block at https://fabric406.com/blogs/fabric406-blog/how-to-sew-a-basic-flying-geese-block
Now you can repeat Step 3 using the four Light/Ivory 2.5" x 4.5" rectangles, and the eight Dark 3/Red 2.5" squares as shown in the picture below.
Pair up a Step 3 unit and a Step 4 unit as shown below.
Sew the two units together and press the seam allowance toward the Dark 1/Green fabric as shown in the picture below. Repeat Steps 5 and 6 for a total of four Flying Geese units.
Putting It All Together:
Lay out the Center unit, the Corner units, and the Flying Geese units in a typical Nine Patch configuration as shown below.
Now you just sew the units together in three rows...
And press the seam allowances. In the picture below you can see that I pressed the seam allowances away from the Flying Geese units. Hindsight being 20/20, I probably should have pressed the other way but either way works.
All that's left is to sew the three rows together, and
Press the seam allowances toward the outside of the Swing in the Center quilt block as shown in the picture below. You're done!
The Swing in the Center quilt block (or Dumbbell, or Mrs. Roosevelt's Favorite or Roman Pavement) is quite pretty and makes a nice secondary design when multiple blocks are sewn together. There are a lot of seams coming together where the Flying Geese units and Corner units meet but my points came out okay - just a little bulky. All in all, I'm pleased with it.
I hope you've enjoyed this Swing in the Center quilt block.
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P.S. You can find the fabrics I used in this block at https://fabric406.com/search?q=spirit+of+america