“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then is not an act, but a habit” Aristotle
This Block is made from two easy to piece units.
In my book Simple Strategies for Scrap Quilts one of the strategies I suggest is to use a common background with what I call “related fabrics”. When I use the term “related fabrics” I don’t mean the new collection from one manufacturer that just arrived in your local quilt shop. “Related fabrics” can be 1930s’ reproductions, batiks, Civil War, plaids, polka dots, bright children’s prints and just about anything else similar enough to group together.
For this block I used my collection of Civil War fabrics with a common background (Olde Townhouse by Paula Barnes for Marcus Fabrics). The background is lighter than all of the other fabrics. I have made quilts using bright children’s prints with a black polka dot background. The background can be light or dark. You just need contrast to create a clear pattern.
I love playing with different sets for a block. Maybe one of these will inspire you.
Straight set with sashing and red corner stones. The red corner stones act as a center creating an alternate pattern. I always find this interesting.
On point with sashing. This gives you a larger quilt with fewer blocks. If this quilt hangs in a show the diagonal lines will catch the viewers eye.
This quilt appears to be on-point but it is really a straight set with an alternate snowball block.
“It is the chiefest point of happiness that a man is wiling to be what he is.” Desiderius Erasmus
I used the lightest value with the darkest for the pinwheel. I think this makes it seem to float on top. My block came out a little crooked. I decided that just made it a little more floaty. LOL
Ups & Downs
I loved playing with this block. The 3D effect in the old tumbling block quilts was created by using light, medium and dark values. I think a quilt made with these blocks could be very dramatic.
If I made this block again I would choose a wider range of colors. The dark pink and purple spools appear much closer in color than I expected. I am telling myself the ripples in this block will “quilt out”. LOL
“There is no such thing as a problem without a gift in its hands” Richard Bach
In and Out
I am blaming the lopsided lower left corner on bad photography. That is my story and I am sticking to it. LOL.
This block has four of the units shown below. I was introduced to this unit many years ago by Sally Schneider. She called it Mary’s Triangles. She has a wonderful method for making two of these units at a time.
Creative Grids calls this unit cat’s cradle. With their ruler, CGRHD1, it is easy to accurately make the units in many sizes.
“I am not afraid of storms for I am learning how to sail my ship” Louisa May Alcott
Pearl Louise Krush
I used the Quilt in a Day 2″ finished size mini geese ruler to make the 8 flying geese units. I was pleased with the results. Using strong contrasts in value makes the star points the focus of the block. It does not show in the photo but the two darkest fabrics are a very dark green and a dark purple. Because the values are so similar they appear as the same fabric from a distance.
“The time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time” Bertrand Russell
I used the Quilt in a Day 2″ finished size mini geese ruler to make the 8 flying geese units. I was pleased with the results. Doing the “Stitch-and-Flip” technique to add to a half-square triangle unit was a first for me.
Barbara Groves and Mary Jacobson
Since I am using solid fabrics I felt the block would be more pleasing with fewer colors. It was nice to have an easy to piece block.
When choosing fabrics for this block I think it is important to have a clear contrast in value. I selected a very dark green, a medium blue and a very light green.
I know of only one duty and that is to love. Albert Camas
by Toby Lischko
Like I said in an earlier post, I have been scrap quilting for over 25 years but I have never used such small pieces in a block unless they were strip pieced. I have always been able to arrange my block pieces in order on the machine beside me. Well these little guys seemed to just float off onto the floor. I finally took a piece of 8 1/2″ x 11″ cardboard, wrapped flannel to the back and taped it. Problem solved!!! This also allowed me to arrange the squares and then tip the “design wall” so I could view the block from a distance.
I chose the very light clear green for the center diagonal row and surrounded it with darker squares. The strong shift in value between the squares makes the light green stand out.
I found this block much easier to make than the first three. I have been seriously quilting for 25 years but I have never used small pieces unless they were strip pieced into a block. Since I am one of the “designers” I am working ahead. My piecing has definitely improved. Being a few threads off in large blocks is not a problem. With these 6″ blocks a few threads can make a huge difference.
I must confess the photo of the block above was edited. Those very straight edges are not due to my advanced piecing skills.
I love the very scrappy original block but with the solids I am using I decided to go with only three colors.