Sunday, 22 April 2012

An Arrangement of Small Pieces

Earlier in the year I spoke about my project for the year...a quilt made with a block called "An Arrangement of Small Pieces". I found this block on my favourite web site  Antique Geometric Quilt Designs and somehow got fixated on it (and I mean fixated - not quite sure why but I really like its name and the idea that a quilt actually is an arrangement of small pieces). However, then the setting up of the blog, moving house and life in general got in the way and I did not make any progress on it whatsoever. The last few days I was trying to again explore the origins of the block a bit further however this has proven difficult. It is included in Maggie Malone's 5500 Quilt Block Designs Book (2003) and I believe it got published originally in the Kansas City Star publication (by Nancy Cabot?). I thought that I had once come across it on the web, however could not find it anymore anywhere. In Maggie Malone's book it is given as a Nine Patch block and on the Antique Geometric  Quilt Design web site it is presented as a 6 X 6 grid.

First of all, I drafted the block in my trusted EQ7 program using the 6 x 6 grid. Initially I had it as a 12" block, however then later scaled it down.

An Arrangement of Small Pieces
This is what it looks like. I then explored how best to sew this. I did do a practice sample earlier in the year but now that I am getting closer to actually starting on this, feel that I need to re-visit this. This could be foundation pieced quite easily however I do not fancy foundation piecing an entire quilt...also that would mean (unless my thinking is not quite straight) that the seams of each triangle would be facing up which would cause an issue when putting it all together in terms of lining up the intersections. So, at the moment I am thinking that I am going to piece this having the seams of the triangles alternating, so that it fits together neatly when completing the block.

The whole block would finish at 9" square which is a size that I like working with. In terms of fabric I tried all sorts of things but kept coming back to Thirties fabric. Not that I really like Thirties fabric (my preference is country and reproduction fabrics) but for some reason this block seems to need it. Initially I tried to audition what I had and thought I could complement it with other bits and pieces, however I finally had to concede that this was not going to work - my idea is to do a variation of this block which would involve either having a srappy type look or go for the more restrained scrappy type look which then incidentally gives you a nice secondary pattern.

Restrained Scrappy-type look
Scrappy-type look

So, undecided at this point, and also still looking at ways to simplify the contruction of this block. Anyway, I ended up buying a Moda Jelly roll (30's Playtime, Chloe's Closet) Not cheap, but gives me a lot of fabric to play with and ultimately cheaper than continuously adding to the 'bitses' that I have (and then never quite having enough).
Well, only one thing left to do...I actually have to do a bit of a practice run to see whether I can piece this accurately enough. Also have to continue working on my Craftsy BOM...still working on the February block!

Until next time


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