Barrister’s Block

Let’s take a look at the Barrister’s Block.

Barrister's Block

I drew the block from an 8 x 8 grid using Electric Quilt.  If you have BlockBase, it is number 1363.

Here is how it looks set side-by-side in a straight set:

Barrister's Block Straight Set

 There is a lot of movement created by this block.  It can be calmed down by simply moving the color around.

Barrister's Block Straight Set

In the next design, every other block has been rotated.  And I’ve altered the Barrister’s Block just a little bit.

Barrister's Block Straight Set

Again…the same setting, but the color has been moved around.  That change shifted the emphasis from the smaller triangles to the large half square triangles.  It looks boxy.

Barrister's Block Straight Set

Click here for a peek at a scrappy antique Barrister’s Block quilt.  The background is grey…a popular color with modern quilters.

Sneak Peak 2

Just in case you think I have forgotten, or maybe rolled this quilt into a ball and labeled it another UFO:

Sneak Peak

I have the same disease as my blogger friend, Jenny Lyon.  It is the “quilt it to death” disease.  My saving grace is that I am not a perfectionist.  Even so, this project is taking longer than it needed to.

It isn’t a show quilt.  It isn’t an artsy quilt.  A nice edge-to-edge quilting design would have been fine.

I am using Aurifil 50 weight in both the top and the bobbin.  But not the same color, so I will have ‘pokeys’ (Oh horrors!). 

As I said, I am not a perfectionist.

And it is spring (I wanna be outdoors!).  And I have a day job.  And I can come up with lots of excuses.

But I will finish.  This year.


TV Tray Makeover

Ever since I saw a few of these tv tray makeovers on Pinterest, I have wanted to make one for myself.  So this week, I took the time (which wasn’t much time at all)!

A portable ironing table is mighty handy to take to quilting classes.

Portable Ironing Table

It is also handy to have next to the sewing machine if your normal ironing surface is across the room and too big to move.  Or maybe handy to use while watching tv in another room.  Or maybe handy to take along on a road trip.

Portable Ironing Table

This is a simple little makeover to do.  There are other tutorials (search google and Pinterest) but Elizabeth Hartman, over at Oh, Fransson! did a nice job of explaining how-to back in 2010.

Sneak Peak

Here’s a quick sneak peak at what I’m working on:

Sneak Peak

Balance Quilt Block Part 2

In this post, I showed a few straight set quilt designs with the Balance quilt block.

Balance Quilt Block

Now let’s look at this block set on point:

Balance On Point Set

It’s a nice quilt.  I could see this on a table top, or the favored arm chair for this time of year.

How would it look with a green background?

Balance On Point Set

I prefer the white, but one isn’t better than the other…just personal preference.

Balance On Point Set

Perhaps more open space for the quilter who likes to show off her quilting:

Balance On Point Set

How about “floating” the blocks:

Balance On Point Set

One more:

Balance On Point Set

All of the blocks in the above designs are the Balance quilt block and variations created from Balance by deleting lines and moving color around.

You really can do a lot with one block.


If you haven’t met the quilt block called Balance, then let me introduce you.

Balance Quilt Block

I found this block in Nancy Martin’s Perpetual Calendar 365 Quilt Blocks A Year.

I drew it with a 5 x 5 grid in Electric Quilt 7.  If you own BlockBase, it is #1817c.

It isn’t often that one sees a green and white quilt (I don’t think I’ve ever seen one…I may have to google that later), but it is March, and I’m longing for spring, so I’ve set this block with green and white. 

Here is how it looks in a straight set:

Balance Straight Set

In the following design, I’ve deleted a few lines from the block to create an alternate crossing block to set Balance with.  I’ve also added another green to the mix.

Balance Straight Set

I squared up the quilt design (it isn’t longer than it is wide now) and rearranged the blocks:

Balance Straight Set

Again, Balance is set side-by-side.  The only difference is in the color placement.  Stars have appeared!

Balance Straight Set

An alternate color theme:

Balance Straight Set

By deleting just a few lines, I’ve created another alternate block to add to the mix:

Balance Straight Set

And one more arrangement:

Balance Straight Set

Lots more could be done with this block, so go ahead and play with it!  See what you come up with!

By the way, this block looks amazingly like Bachelor’s Puzzle.

Aunt Sukey Spins Off

For my personal block/quilt design challenge, I chose Aunt Sukey’s Choice quilt block this week.

Aunt Sukey's Choice Quilt Block

It is drawn with a 6 x 6 grid.

I usually challenge myself to add/delete lines to a block to come up with alternate blocks, and then use these blocks, along with the original block, to design quilts.

I got distracted by SewCalGal’s red and white challenge.  In Phase II, we are challenged to design a red and white quilt.  If we want to actually make the quilt, then Phase III is available for us to enter.

The blocks in the following design do not include the original Aunt Sukey’s Choice block, but two variations that I drew from it.

Aunt Sukey Spins Off

The quilt size is 84.5″ x 96.5″.

Electric Quilt 7 (my quilt design software of choice) even gives the yardage requirements!

Yardage Requirements

And just for fun, let’s see how it looks when I move the red and white around:

Aunt Sukey Spins Off 2

I like them both!

If I were to make this design, I don’t know that I would stick to just three fabrics.  As long as I keep the importance of value/contrast in mind, I could make this a scrappy red and white quilt.

I’m going to link up with SewCalGal!  How about you?  Are you taking the red and white challenge?