Blocks and Blocks and Blocks

Modern Wonky Cross by Marsha Gormley Swanson, Dog Ear Quilts

Recently, a Facebook friend published a photo of a quilt she made based on a tutorial she found at Film in the Fridge.

Marsha varied the block size for her quilt, making the blocks rectangular, and used African-print fabrics to commemorate the recipients’ mission trip to Africa. I love the quilt; it’s simple and lovely and so very graphic. She even captured some great outdoor shots of it!

I don’t copy other people’s quilts, and I rarely use a pattern, but that quilt really excited me. I could think of a lot of ways I’d like to see it: scrappy, bright, maybe Modern. Solids? I was really thinking I wanted to make one too.

Film in the Fridge’s GlimmaCross

Then yesterday, as if on cue, Bad Ass Quilters Society posted a link on Facebook to the same tutorial, suggesting  (gasp!) an internet block swap. Well! I don’t join block swaps anymore…but this might be fun! I had been thinking, too, about the 350 Blocks project. That many blocks could go a long way to finishing some things I’m working on, and maybe even something new.


Am I nuts? Three-hundred and fifty blocks this year? And a swap?

So, yeah…it was starting to look like a big fat NO. Then I got thinking…again (and yes, this is your cue to be afraid): Three-hundred and fifty blocks over a year is not really so many. It’s only one block per day most days…yes? That’s only 29 blocks per month (give or take). Surely I can do this. Can’t I? Yes, yes, of course I can. But still…What if I don’t get them all made? Will I get kicked out of some club? Will everybody see me as a failure?  Are they going to point and laugh at me? Will I have to turn in my rotary cutter?

There might be some possibilities in these stacks…

The swap details aren’t up yet, but if I join, I’m sure I’ll have to make a bunch of blocks. A bunch. Blocks I’ll give away. I figure for a twin-bed-sized quilt without borders, I’ll need 168 of those cross blocks (they finish at 6-1/2″). If I make it queen-sized, I’ll need 225. Will I get enough back? Will the ones I make count toward my 350? Sure they will, and I’ll get back a number equal to the ones I send out. So, why not? In the end, I’ll make a good portion of the blocks I need for my total of 350, I’ll send out a lot of them and get new ones back in the mail, all to go together in a fun, new quilt. What’s not to love there? And if I don’t join, I’ll still make that many blocks, just because.

Or maybe these?

So for now, I guess I’d better get busy. I have blocks to make. If you don’t hear from me soon, you might look under my cutting table. It’s a long way to 350. How many are you going to make?