Those Pesky Orphan Blocks

What do you do with orphan blocks (individual or just a few blocks left over once a quilt is finished)?

Here is a recent view of my stash of orphan blocks:

Yes, that bin is full of smaller orphan blocks, with the big orphans stacked on top!

Obviously something needs to be done!

I got the orphan blocks out recently and selected all those that finished 12″ square.  I combined them into two donation quilts, which finished 42″ square.

You may (or may NOT) notice that there are both white and cream backgrounds in the quilt.  I say, “so what?”  It would be even less noticeable if there were more of each.  Even with just a few blocks it looks OK to me.  Sure, if I were planning from scratch I might make the backgrounds all the same.  But for a scrap quilt I think the white-vs-cream distinction is much ado about nothing. (Are you with me, Laura?)

Let me know what you think.  Does it look “off” to you?  Or do you not even notice?  Would you do this on purpose, perhaps using white and cream randomly in different blocks?

More posts on orphan blocks to come, for obvious reasons 😀

A Couple of Little Quilts

When I was going through my orphan blocks recently, I came across two blocks I wanted to finish as little art quilts.  Both were made for a contest some years ago and has since languished in the orphan bin. I’m not sure how many 12″ square quilts the world needs, but I have always liked these blocks, so I decided to finish them as little art quitls.

Obviously this first one was inspired by Piet Mondrian and mid-century modern.  I’ve since seen other quilts made with the same idea.

This second one I have turned into multiple quilts and blocks.  It was inspired by a college design class I took years ago.  At the time one of the “best” things to do in creating a design was to get a serious close-up showing only part of an object.  I still like that idea and use it a lot, along with other things I learned in that class. (Thanks, Mark!)

Do you have orphan blocks that could become little art quilts on their own?

I’m planning a couple more blogs on things to do with orphan blocks, so please stay tuned 🙂

And when making masks for friends and family, don’t forget the children.  They need to wear masks, too, if they must go in public.

Orphan Block Cards

A while back I ordered some blank cards with the idea that I would use some fabric scraps to create my own note cards. card2

In addition to the cards, I had this spray intended to turn any fabric into fusible fabric. Never mind why.  card1

So I sprayed the back of one of my little orphan blocks, then ironed it onto the card. I pinked the edges of the blocks before using because I figured there’d be endless loose threads otherwise.

card3The heat of the iron warped the card a little, so I wasn’t entirely satisfied with that.  A glue stick probably would have worked as well, without creating the warp.

Despite the warp, this was actually going pretty well, and I have an (almost) endless supply of little orphan blocks, so next I tried sewing the blocks on the cards:card4

It was difficult to keep them from distorting while being sewn.  So…warped cards from ironing, or blocks slightly askew from sewing?  Anyway, they are unique 🙂card5

Be warned: If I correspond with you regularly, one of these will be coming your way, ready or not!