Sunday, January 27, 2008

3 colors+2 block styles=Great Sampler Quilt

Take 3 fabrics and 2 block types and turn them into unlimited possibilities! Say what?

Creating a quilt starts with the color. Check out my article on how to use your color wheel for a better understanding of matching colors.

When I refer to block types I am referring to the construction. Most blocks are drawn on a grid pattern of some time. (of course there exceptions to this) For now lets look at some of the common grids used.

  1. one patch

  2. This is just as it says 1-patch or one square. The simplest or purist form of a quilting block. You take squares of equal size and join them together to create rows, and then join rows to make a quilt top. One patch blocks can be enhanced by adding appliqué or embroidery to each square.

  3. four patch

  4. This block uses a grid of 2 x 2 squares. The four patch is a popular block for quilters of all levels. There are many possibilities for design by simply cutting each of the four sections into smaller sections. Take for example a half square triangle. Where you cut the square in half diagonally into two triangles. Change colors, or mix and match squares and triangles and see how many designs you get! Another option would be to cut each square into a smaller 4-patch and combine this with triangles or larger squares. Ok you get the idea there are many blocks to create here.

  5. nine patch

  6. The block uses a grid of 3 x 3 squares. The nine patch is another quilters favorite for it's design options. You see this block in many quilts today. Like with the four patch you can cut each of the nine sections into smaller components and come up with many many blocks. Just changing the colors of each section can result in a new appearance.

Of course there are many other grids to work with, this is just a sampling to help you understand how blocks relate to one another.

In this sampler quilt I used three primary colors, red yellow and blue. I used only two grids for the blocks. I used the four patch and the nine patch. See if you can identify which blocks are which.

Here they are on my design wall before joining them into the quilt.

The next photo shows the finished quilt top.

By the way this quilt was made for a class I teach at Quilting Weekly. During this class you will not only learn how to create a sampler quilt like this, but you will learn how to draft your own blocks as well. In addition to that you will get a better understanding of color, contrast and scale so you will get the most out of your fabrics.

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