Monday, September 1
Double Dutch Random Sampler Quilt Along: my Crazy Quilt Block
The Double Dutch Random Sampler Quilt Along is a very relaxed Quilt Along. There's no pressure, no deadlines and anyone can join in. That's my kind of Sew Along :) Every two months or so one of the ladies of our local Double Dutch Quilt group posts a new block suggestion on their blog. All of these posts are in English (just in case you were wondering...)
Previous Double Dutch QAL blocks
The first one was Lotje's House Block (very cute, I made several). Next was Muriel's Diamond Cross Block (made several of those as well) EvaMarie chose a very appropriate Windmill Block and the most recent block was Mari's Improv Curvy block (I haven't tried that one yet, sounds intriguing though). Today I'm adding a 'Crazy Quilt Block' to the lot!
What is a Crazy Quilt Block?
While I was researching Crazy Quilt Blocks on the internet I saw two different types of 'crazy'. One is where you use a pattern, well that's not 'crazy' enough for me and sounds rather restricted. So I'd rather do the improv version where you simply start and built up your own block. When I made my block (the one pictured above) I didn't use a tutorial, I just started sewing one scrap to another. Later I found out that it's far more common to use some sort of foundation for your improv Crazy Quilt Block, like paper or muslin. My block is doing fine without foundation but I can see the advantages of using foundation paper or fabric. Some quilters even add some batting to make a 'Quilt as you go' type of block.
How to make a Crazy Quilt Block
I was going to make a tutorial to show how to make a Crazy Quilt Block but I noticed there are already a few good ones out there. My &Stitches colleague Julie has a tutorial for a Crazy Quilt Block with foundation. She has even added some decorative trims and stitches to her block, something I'd love to try too! On Completely Cauchy I saw another Crazy Quilt Block tutorial in which paper from the Yellow Pages (or is it a phone book?) was used as foundation! Aneela's Crazy Scrappy Block tutorial is for a block without foundation and pretty much sums up how I made my block. So there's lots of different options: sew with foundation or not, add embellishments or keep it simple. Use lots of different colours or a limited palette. Make it 6, 9 or 12 inch. It's all up to you. :)
I started with a very cute Charley Harper fabric and as you can see I roughly followed the shape of the bird and started with five sides. After that it's much like sewing a crazy log cabin block. You keep on adding strips all around and -important!- cut them at interesting angles after you've added them. Continue until you have reached the size you want. I made a 9" block using a limited palette of blue, grey, orange and red as these are the colours I chose for my Sampler Quilt.
On Flickr I found this lovely 'Bunny Vortex' block Maritza Soto made for a Quilt Bee. Julie Frick made the Bee Blocks into this amazing quilt. If I didn't already have more than 5 (possibly nearly 10 I lost count/am in denial) quilts 'in progress' I'd start my Crazy Quilt tonight! Hope you will enjoy making this block as much as I do.
Don't forget to join our Double Dutch Sampler Quilt group on Flickr if you want to sew along with us and share your progress with us.