Do you have a very favourite traditional quilt block? I do….hands down, no questions asked, its the churn dash block. Its one of the first quilts I ever made, and it is possolutely the first one I pieced where HSTs were involved.
Over the years, I’ve collected a whole compendium of quilt books and patterns dedicated to churn dashes. I’ve posted about them again and again (13 to date, not including this post)…and I confess that anytime I don’t have a project underway, and I’m feeling a need to just sit and sew, this is my go-to block. I love it because its easy as pie, quick as a wink and with just a few switch outs, you have yourself an awesomely astounding quilt block.
So you can imagine how excited I was, when Tara from The Quilt District asked me if I would review her brandy new “Churned Up” pattern. Here is a picture of Tara’s version. Does it not make your heart sing? I knew it would! Mine too!
This is such a seriously fresh and fun take on a traditional block. I don’t know about you, but this picture makes me smile every time I see it. It’s like a surprise party because different units pop out every time to clamor “look at me, I’m here too”. You gotta love that.
Naturally I jumped at the chance to get my hands on this pattern. I may have actually refused to put the roast in the oven until it was safely in my hands. And then I’m pretty sure I refused to do the dishes because I couldn’t wait another second to get into my sewing room and start cutting fabric.
There are so many great things about this pattern, but first and foremost, it’s layer cake friendly….which is a very important consideration for me. I recently started collecting layer cakes and am always excited to open one and start cutting it up. Of course the pattern is also well-written, well-illustrated and Tara explains all the steps in a super organized way. My heart is singing again.
Fortunately for me, this pattern popped into my life in December, right around the time I was reviewing patterns for pillow possibles for my sister, Donna. We have this thing, where she always asks me for seasonal pillow forms to decorate the little teal church pew in her foyer….and I always say “Sure” then leave it to the last minute to make them. Well not this year, no sirree bob, the minute I opened the package I knew that I had Donna’s Christmas gift covered. I loved this block so much, I made her two pillow forms. (and yes, she does owe me BIG TIME). Check these babies out.
One of the finest features of this block is that it looks great in a whole bunch of formats. Woot Woot. As you probably noticed, I had to modify things a bit to make the blocks fit the pillow form size (18″) which is why there is a grey edge stripe on one and a grey cross on the other. I also decided to give the units a twist-a-roony when I sewed them together because Sister Donna already has 2 churn dash pillow forms, from her favourite sister (me!) and I wanted to wow her with something completely different. Don’t you just love it when a plan comes together perfectly.
I think a pattern that’s cute as a button, straightforward AND easy to re-configure is a pattern you should buy. Don’t you? I knew you did.
The pattern is out in the real world now and because I know you’re gonna want to get yours ASAP, you should visit The Quilt District to get all the details. Then, you should pop over to Instagram and see what’s happening at #churnedupquilt. I’d love to see your version there.
Did you do something creative today?