So I cut out the pieces, skimmed through the pattern, and dived in.
The block on the right was my first block. Not too bad, I thought. I used Nana’s tips for ensuring that the center almond shape’s points don’t get cut off, and everything was going great until I sewed on the side triangles. And then the block was far too big – like, an inch of extra all around. And the trim line came far too close to the rings (look at the bottom right corner). I wish I took a picture before trimming.
And then I skimmed through the pattern again before making the second block, but I seemed to be doing everything correctly.
The second block, the one on the left, came out better, but it was still really big before trimming and had worryingly little space on the background fabric between the edge and the ring. But I thought I was OK and that was how the block should look.
So before I dived in with cutting my real fabric, I just looked at the pattern one more time.
Lo and behold, there was a little line in the cutting directions: “Align previous curved cut under the dashed curved reference
line on ruler.” Yeah, I was totally aligning the curved cut to the SOLID reference line on the ruler. Which was making my curved rings too big, which was making my blocks too big.
Moral of the story? Read the instructions carefully and follow them. Of course.