The Birth of a Design …

The pattern for Block Six of the Round the Year Quilt was posted yesterday. (What you see above is the Rainbow version of the block. The black and white striped area could be any black and white modern, text or geometrical print.)

To get back to the story I was going to tell you, I started by calling this simply the Spiral Block. It was rechristened to Spiral Bargello. Roulette was another name that stuck around for a long time, for obvious reasons. I then thought of Maelstrom and even Cyclone, before my friend and fellow quilter Sobana said it reminded her of Lollipop Candy!

Like the name, the block design itself underwent a number of avatars!


This, here is Spiral1, scrapped, because even after removing all the curves, there are too many points to match.

So I came up with a block with staggered and angled pieces, that became wider as you approached the edge of the circle.


But these made me feel kind of giddy! And too loud! So, this is what Jaya Parker tested for me.

And came up with this!

But neither of us cared for it too much! She decided to make another block…

…using a bargello kind of staggered strip piecing method.

Isn’t that gorgeous?

Meanwhile, I decided to make some further changes in the design and sent it off to Sobana for testing.

Here is Sobana’s Test Block

Pretty? But there were a few problems with the design. For one, the strips used were different widths and therefore confusing! I also made a cardinal error in the design, ending the circle up at 16.5″ instead of 15″!

So after a lot of more work, here is the final design.

All the fabric strips are the same width, making the cutting easier. There are no points to match, making the assembly simpler. As for piecing the block itself, I have shared the chain strip method with you earlier, which makes piecing a piece of of cake! But very soon, as soon as I am allowed to sit and sew ( yes, my sciatica is getting better, so cross my fingers, I should be soon on my sewing table!), I will share with you the bargello metod of piecing this, with pictures!

Before I say bye for the day, I must thank my wonderful testers, who have been working on these blocks with a minimal amount of input from me! I must also tell you that I have been experimenting with all these designs and colours on the amazing quilt assistant free software from Do go and check it out!

I have to start printing templates of Block Nine and fine tuning Block Ten, while Cindy Ellerbe, another generous quilter, tests Block Seven for me…

Author: Mads

In alphabetical order: daughter, mother, painter, philosopher, poet, quilter, seeker, wife...

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