Apr 23, 2006

"Whatever you want to call it" block

Upon awakening, I realized that I needed to get a handout together for the Bama Belles annual spring sew in for the block that we are going to try. At this point I think you could safely call it, "Whatever You Want to Call It" block. There are at least three known ways of assembling it and I added a 4th twist, LOL (as pictured)

This essential layout has been all the rage on one of the internet lists I belong to. On our recent field trip we saw one very similar to this done up at Heart to Heart Quilt Shop designed by one of the shop owners, Cindy Wilson. (click on patterns and then scroll down to "Nine Patch Fun". She used 3 inch squares and had half blocks on the side and used a limited palette of colors. The blocks were huge though and we thought 12 inch blocks would work better for our needs.

The options as I see it------
  • Brandy offers a free pattern called “Chiclets” on the internet. She, more or less, approaches it in doing horizontal rows like a checkerboard and then fits the half square triangle units in rows to all four sides of the checkboard center.
  • Anita, one of Cher's Portland Piecer buddies, looked at the block as Shaded nine patches. I suspect that Cindy did as well though we did not purchase the pattern to know for sure.
  • Debbie Caffrey in her book Open a Can of Worms (from 2000) had a far different view of how this might go together. She views it as a combination of 4- “Exquisite” or Indian Hatchet” blocks and 4- 4 patches. The two blocks alternate -- refer to the book for the correct layout.
  • It makes more sense to me to cut 4-2 1/2 x 4 1/2 inch strips and 4-2 1/2 x 6 1/2 inch strips and 8-2 1/2 inch squares to make diagonal flip triangles for the top/bottom--side/side of the center checkboard that is formed by 4- 4 patches you have made by whatever method you chose---"leaders and enders", Billie Lauder's or the Nickel Quilts book methods of "2 for one" from squares or strip pieced. Guess that makes it a "combo" method, LOL. The advantage would be that you would not need to cut 3 inch squares and do "sew and cut" triangles that way trimming down the resultant units down to 2 1/2 inches. ALL of it is based on 2 1/2 inches--should work.

If I had time I would do up a block but I am half done basting these leaves. I figured out last night that I can baste around piece of templar and set with spray sizing just like you do for Making Applique Circles. Now you seasoned appliquers are probably laughing at me about that discovery but it came to me in a "lightbulb moment". I tried it and these little ovals are coming out fine.

I still need to get my sewing things together; change the needle, de-lint etc the machine I will be using and pack up the quilts that need binding etc, etc. First though, a trip to the grocery store is also in order since I waited too long to order the meat and cheese tray online---make up my own, I guess. Once the trunk is emptied out---it will become the "quiltmobile" and half my house will go along with.


  1. Hi Linda, what a neat block for your handout sheet and sew in! I like it..very simple and yet it looks very neat!
    And almost any fabrics would work for the center patches.

    Good for you for getting figured out on the applique. Those light bulb moments? Yup, better late than never!

  2. Looks like a fun block!

    I think I'd do it the same way as you, and I've been looking for something to try a leader ender type scrap quilt with, too!

    How's your web lessons coming along?

  3. ck'ed here to see if you posted about the sew-in...guess I will wait patiently (yeah right) to see how things went

  4. nice to catch up with your posts...can't wait to hear more on the sew in!

  5. I love the block title!! I will have to try some blocks with this pattern!!

  6. All those choices, wow! Glad to hear yor lightbulb moment has made life easier!

  7. It was fun to hostess that block on Quilting Frenzy and StashBuilders AND StashBusters. Glad you had fun with it too. Betty J in OKC


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