21 Jun 2017

Peony Nine Patch quilt block

Flowers are everywhere now (in the northern hemisphere where I live). And my friend Lisa recently posted a picture of her beautiful watercolour of a vase of peonies from her garden. This then, inspired me to create the pattern for the Peony Nine Patch quilt block. I tried to stay true to the colours I had seen in these beautiful blooms in nature.

Peony Nine Patch quilt block image © Wendy Russell
Peony Nine Patch quilt block

This nine patch block gives you practice using half square triangles and quarter square triangles as individual cut pieces -- rather than creating the usual square patch.




This quilt block can join my most recent floral offering -- Magnolia -- to add to your collection of Flower quilt blocks.

The two sample quilts illustrated surprised me in that they both looked like I intended to design some "plaid" quilts. (I'm a sucker for plaid at any time.) So what do you think?

Quilts designed using Peony Nine Patch quilt block - image © Wendy Russell
Quilts designed using Peony Nine Patch quilt block

All images © W. Russell, patchworksquare.com

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18 Jun 2017

Joseph's Coat quilt block

This block is for me! I say that because I just love colour -- and the story tells that Joseph had this amazing coat of many colours. So, naturally I had to design the Joseph's Coat quilt block as a scrappy version with lots and lots of colour. This is a perfect choice to use up all of those scraps in your fabric stash.

Joseph's Coat quilt block image © Wendy Russell
Joseph's Coat quilt block

It's important that you have a definite light and dark fabric to give the eye a rest after gazing at all of those colours. (You might even reverse the placement of the light and dark just for a different look.)


This quilt block gives you lots of practice in sewing three different patches -- half square triangles, quarter square triangles and the square in a square patch, but the easy part is in constructing it all as an uneven nine patch block.

I had so much fun playing around with this block that I designed four different sample quilts. Here are two of them below, but you will need to check out the pattern to see the other two ideas.

Quilts using Joseph's Coat quilt block - images © Wendy Russell
Sample quilts using the Joseph's Coat quilt block

All images © W. Russell, patchworksquare.com

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11 Jun 2017

Grandmother's Choice quilt block

Earlier this week we looked at celebrating Dads with the Father's Choice quilt block. Today, it is all about Grandma.

Grandmother's Choice quilt block image © Wendy Russell
Grandmother's Choice quilt block


This is an easy five patch block. It uses half square triangles in two different sizes and that is the extent of the difficulty in this quilt block.


Although this block is technically a five patch (because it is designed on a 5 x 5 grid) it also falls into the category of uneven nine patch due to the size of the patches -- often covering two rows of that five row grid.

The two sample quilts illustrated both use on point settings of the block but give you different looking quilts in the end. The choices of block layout are endless and you just need to use your imagination. Enjoy!

Quilts designed using the Grandmother's Choice quilt block - images © Wendy Russell
Quilts designed using the Grandmother's Choice quilt block

Keeping it in the Family

~ Father's Choice
~ Mother's Choice
~ Sister's Choice
All images © W. Russell, patchworksquare.com

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5 Jun 2017

Father's Choice quilt block

Last month we celebrated our Moms. Now it is time to recognize those great men in our lives -- Dads. The Father's Choice quilt block might be just what you are looking for.

Father's Choice quilt block image © Wendy Russell
Father's Choice quilt block

I chose this subtle colour scheme since most of the Dads I know like blue and grey. However, if your Dad has another favourite colour, don't be shy in expressing it in this five patch quilt block. The only pieced patch required is the half square triangle and the rest of the patches are squares. This is a quick and easy block to make.



The two sample quilts illustrated are both using an on point setting of the block. But as you can see, by careful placement of the blocks and choosing other features such as sashing or extra, blank blocks you can achieve very different looks.

Father's Choice quilt images © Wendy Russell
Quilts designed using the Father's Choice quilt block

Similar quilt blocks - Keeping it all in the Family

~ Farmer's Daughter 
~ Grandmother's Choice
~ Sister's Choice

All images © W. Russell, patchworksquare.com

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29 May 2017

Jewels in a Frame quilt block

The Jewels in a Frame quilt block is daunting at first glance. However, squares, rectangles and half square triangles are the only pieces used. These are the most basic units used in quiltmaking.

Jewels in a Frame quilt block image © Wendy Russell
Jewels in a Frame quilt block
I have designed the pattern to sew the block in sections (or chunks) since that method is easier than using a "row by row" approach. Breaking the block down in this manner makes it less overwhelming and you will be done before you know it.

The two quilts illustrated below use the two most common settings for the block. One is a side by side layout while the second quilt features the blocks set on point with some additional blank blocks to showcase your quilting.

Quilts designed with the 'Jewels in a Frame' quilt block - images © Wendy Russell
Quilts designed using the Jewels in a Frame quilt block

All images © W. Russell, patchworksquare.com

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26 May 2017

Delectable Mountains Variation quilt block


Delectable Mountains is a well known quilt block and this is a variation on that block. There are several more patches in this variation to add extra interest.

(*Note to self - prepare a pattern for the Delectable Mountains block too.)

Delectable Mountains Variation quilt block image © Wendy Russell
Delectable Mountains - Variation quilt block

This quilt block is technically an eight patch (because it is designed on an 8 x 8 grid), but I have created the pattern to be sewn as an uneven nine patch as I feel it is a simpler way to construct it. (I would much rather work with smaller groupings than a row by row method.)

This block is a choice for those quilters who would like more of a challenge. There are no difficult patches to make to create the block -- but there are lots of pieces, and therefore lots of seams. Accuracy in sewing a quarter inch seam allowance is crucial to a successful construction of this block.


I took quite a while designing the sample quilt layouts as I wanted this block to create a stunning quilt. I like the outcome of my endeavours. They both look very different and you have to search very carefully to see that both quilts are made using only the one block in their design.

Delectable Mountains Variation quilt images © Wendy Russell
Sample quilts designed using the Delectable Mountains Variation quilt block

All images © W. Russell, patchworksquare.com

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21 May 2017

Flying Ducks quilt block

The Flying Ducks quilt block would be a good choice to use as a learning tool -- as a "step 2" of sorts for using half square triangles. Generally half square triangles are used as a "patch" by sewing two right angled triangles of contrasting fabrics together to create a square. However, often we need to use the cut pieces differently.

Flying Ducks quilt block - image © Wendy Russell
Flying Ducks quilt block
In this quilt block, some of the single half square triangle pieces are sewn to adjoining sides of a square to create a large triangle. This new pieced triangle is then finished into a square by sewing a single larger triangle to the pieced triangle. Still confused? Well you can see what I mean by looking at the four corner sections of the block.

The second learning experience in this quilt block is known as a three quarter square triangle patch. Two quarter square triangles are used to make one side of the square and this then is sewn to a third triangle. You use different methods for the initial cuts of these triangles as it is always preferable to have the straight of grain of the fabric on the outside of the patch (to avoid distortion).

The two sample quilts shown use very basic on point settings of the blocks, but the resultant quilts look very different.

Sample quilts using the "Flying Ducks" quilt block - images © Wendy Russell
Sample quilts using the Flying Ducks quilt block

All images © W. Russell, patchworksquare.com

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16 May 2017

Crow's Feet quilt block

I have to say that I don't think I would ever choose the name Crow's Feet for a quilt block -- or for anything else for that matter. Maybe that is because I am of "a certain age" and this is a term I am not crazy about. However, the designer of this quilt block did not ask me. :-)

Crow's Feet quilt block pattern - image © Wendy Russell
Crow's Feet quilt block

I was pleased how this block turned out. I was asked to create more quilt block patterns with neutral colour schemes, and so I went with the brown family of colours. I actually like it! The dark brown and the orangey browns perk it up quite a bit, but it still "reads" neutral.

The two sample quilts below look entirely different, yet are created using the same block. The "arrows" are quite prominent in the quilt made with blocks set side by side, but almost disappear in the quilt set on point -- your eye is drawn elsewhere.

Sample quilts made using the Crow's Feet quilt block - images © Wendy Russell
Sample quilts made using the Crow's Feet quilt block
All images © W. Russell, patchworksquare.com

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