Playing with charity blocks

Hello everybody!

How are you all doing? You have not heard from me on this blog for a couple of weeks. Well you know…life gets in the way… and the flu… and grading test papers! 🙂

I do hope you have not been ill too; at work the flu was raging rampant. It does seems to have calmed down a bit, thankfully! In between all of the above, I HAVE been in my sewing room. Short bursts of sewing in the evening do count up pretty quickly!

This is what I have been up to:

Last October, I helped organize a quilter’s day at my school. We held a quilt block drive for charity quilts for the Soy Amado project I have been making quilts for. Until now I haven’t shown you any of those donated blocks yet. I do hope to amend that in the coming months. One of the items donated for the charity was a whole collection of blocks and fabrics strips. About 10 log cabin blocks were already pieced on a fabric foundation.

The fabric is high quality quilting cotton from somewhere in the ’90’s. The lady who donated it said she still loved the fabric, but it didn’t go with her decorating scheme anymore. WOW, weren’t we LUCKY do get all of this?! WOW! WOW! WOW!

I have to say that even though I wouldn’t buy this style of fabric for myself, I came to understand why people love it! It is very classic and elegant. I hope to take a photo of the quilt in my modern living room when the quilt is finished, so you can see what I mean. The fabric just goes with everything.

When I was creating the remaining 20 blocks, I came up with the idea to incorporate a heart in the pattern.

It was a bit of a struggle to design something I liked. Most log cabin quilts are square or have an even number of blocks in each row/column. As mine will be 5×6, all of classic log cabin settings didn’t look right.

Can you see the heart ?

Because I wasn’t sure if I would have enough of the fabrics to actually create extra fully pink blocks, I decided to stick to the plan…. classic and elegant!

YEP, this is GOOD!

I have already pieced the remaining 5 extra blocks, so it will a rectangular quilt. I am thinking I will quilt it with flowing feathers. I think you will agree, right?!

I needn’t have worried about the amount of leftover fabric…. there is so much still left! I have already bought some other fabrics to complement them for another quilt.


At the quilters’ day in October we also received more than a hundred seperate blocks. With the help of one of my students we laid them out on the classroom floor and came up with sets. This is one of these sets: all stars and flowers. You may have spotted that some quilters handed in more than one block!

The plan is to quilt each block separately and then piece them together using the Quilt As You Go technique. (To add sashing to connect the blocks)

I have debated what to do with the little flower blocks. They are hand appliquéd (turned under). Thinking that the quilt will be used by a child and it will be washed regularly, I decided to quilt over the appliqué…. Yes, some may find this sacrilege… Some of the appliquéd block already had some satin stitching on them, so I decided that the person who pieced these, wouldn’t mind my decision for adding quilting on top.

I stitched very closely to the edge of the appliqué pieces and then added a little bit of detail, just for fun.

I hope that the yellow borders will pull of the fabrics together in this quilt.

The star blocks were all to size so they didn’t need a border.

After doing some freehand FMQ, I thought I could also quilt these blocks using my Fine Line longarm rulers from Accents in Design. You do need a different foot for this!

Here you see the regular freemotion shank of my Janome 7700 with the ruler foot attached from the Janome 1600. The foot looks a bit like a cup. The ruler can safely bump up to it.


It was great fun!

Once you get the hang of it, the quilting goes pretty quickly compared to the dense FMQ style I used before.

I am about half way through quilting the blocks for this Flower & star charity quilt.

Will show more when I will get to them again!







20 thoughts on “Playing with charity blocks

  1. I see what you mean about the donated quilting fabric not being something you would buy yourself but it does look amazing made up into blocks doesn’t it?

  2. Well, you may have been quiet, but you certainly weren’t idle! I like your new ruler quilting very much too, but your FMQ doodling will always be my favourite. Great Soy Amado work – Alison has been very quiet, nothing since 22 January so I hope everything is OK there…

  3. Both the quilts are amazing. I do like the set you came up with for the log cabin heart. It’s a good idea to save. =) Your quilting is gorgeous, too. Recipients will be very lucky to have these.

    • I like to revisit that idea for a heart too. I have seen other log cabin hearts, but they were based on a log cabin with uneven width of strips. The hearts curved more that way. Thank you for your kind words!

  4. These are some beautiful blocks! And you are doing a wonderful job with the flower blocks. You are preserving them as well as enhancing them with your quilting.

  5. What a wonderful project you are doing… the blocks look great…and it looks like you are enjoying the chance to play with the fmq 🙂

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