The design group I am a part of is working on a group quilt. The overarching goal is to create a group quilt that is both cohesive in design while reflecting each quilter within the group.
I would like to thank Painter’s Palette and Hobbs for supplying fabric and batting. I had a beautifully washed, pressed, and stacked fabric bundle that I had meant to photograph, but apparently I did not before cutting and making blocks. Oops! Below are the color swatches for the representative fabrics that I pulled from the Painter’s Palette website.
Upper row (left to right): Midnight, Lapis, River, Cracked Ice
Lower row (left to right): Colonial Blue, Wind, Fireworks, Lipstick
So did you catch the part about pre-washing? As soon as I received the fabric it went straight into the wash. However, it then sat waiting to be ironed for several weeks. I am fascinated by how I have resistance around fabric prep. I don’t mind ironing my seams, but prepping fabric (that goes for cutting when I’m ready to start a project, too) really is something I am not eager to begin. Once I get started, though, I’m off to the races. So much so that I apparently don’t pause for photography!
So what did I do instead of ironing? Well, design, of course! Here are the design rules we are all working with:
- Full log cabin or quarter log cabin blocks may be used.
- Blocks must incorporate half square triangles in some way.
- Width of the strips within the log cabin blocks do not need to be equal.
- Block can be square or rectangular (any aspect ratio can be used) and finish between about 4″ to 18″ on each side.
- No wonky seams or blocks.
- All seams to be pressed open.
Keeping the idea that the blocks should represent me in some way, I set out to doodle letter shapes using log cabin blocks. I couldn’t get a good looking Y (although I may have just given up too early), but I was able to quickly create a block that incorporates an F (for my last name Fuchs).
For each block, I took a photograph showing that I was indeed following the log cabin style construction for the final block assembly. I used Midnight, Lapis, River, and Cracked Ice, and the F is for Block finishes at 10″ square (10 1/2″ unfinished).
The next block I designed is a nod toward Tennessee, the state where my family still lives and where I went to college. One of my favorite times of year in Tennessee is spring time when all the dogwood trees are in blossom. I used Fireworks, Colonial Blue, Cracked Ice, and Midnight. The Quarter Dogwood Block finishes at 12″ square (12 1/2″ unfinished).
The final design that I came up with has a bit of transparency play. I used Fireworks, Cracked Ice, River, and Midnight in the block. The Transparency Cabin Block finishes at 18″ square (18 1/2″ unfinished).
Some final thoughts about the blocks I have made: I love that the F’s in the “F is for…” block are subtle. In fact, it looks more like an equal sign, which also plays off my technical/math loving side. My blocks range from having 1 HST, to 3 HSTs to almost being fully constructed using HSTs, ha! I also spread the block sizes apart and used the largest block size for the transparency design because I do love large, graphic quilts (I like big blocks).
I will be sending my blocks off to the group. Just because I made these blocks doesn’t mean they will make it into the assembled quilt top (note: at least one block from each member will be used). Because the goal is to make a cohesive quilt, we are making a few initial blocks and based on how our initial blocks look together, we will each take stock and make a few more blocks to contribute. I had a lot of fun working within the design parameters and look forward to coming up with a few more blocks later in the summer!
I’m guessing I might need to work on the smaller side of the piecing scale next time. And maybe I’ll play with varying the log width within the block. I also haven’t used Wind or Lipstick yet in any of my blocks, so I’d like to incorporate them during the next round.
Have you ever worked on a group quilt before? How did the process evolve for your group?