Last week I got a phone call from the local school asking if I would like to visit the 10 and 11 year olds, showing some of my quilts. They had been working on geometrics, and each pupil had been given a paper with a square divided into 9 equal parts to decorate as they liked. We quilters would know this as a nine patch block, – and although such terms were unknown to the children, the term “patchwork” did come to mind when they had glued all their blocks together onto a piece of cardboard. So when searching on the internet for “patchwork”, my website came up, – and after looking around there, they decided they wanted to learn a bit more about patchwork and quilting, and they especially wanted to see the Kameleon Quilts. Lucky I live so close 🙂
So off I went with a suitcase packed full of some of the quilts that still reside in our home. In the hall just outside the classroom, the result of their geometry project hung on the wall.
A very colourful nine patch sampler.
I told them about nine patch blocks and how they were used in quilts, – very often as the first pattern a small girl would learn to make in former times.
Previously, they had also been doing some rangoli patterns:
We agreed that most of these are four patch blocks.
We also had a look at another traditional block; the log cabin block, and then I went on to show how I had used many of these blocks in my quilts, even the Kameleon Quilts.
On the school website there are some photos from this “show and tell”, which also included other quilts than block quilts. The children were very interested and asked lots of questions, and we were having a great time.
After I got home, I studied the photos I took of their projects, especially the nine patch one. There were some unusual and interesting designs in there, so I have taken the liberty of redrawing a few of the blocks in QuiltPro and playing around a bit to see how they would look if worked into a quilt.
This block is not an unusual pattern in itself, but I have not seen it done in a nine patch grid before, – nor have I found a similar nine patch block in the books and block libraries I have looked through. It may exist somewhere, though.
In a quilt with 3 x 3 blocks it would look like this:
Or like this, if every other block is turned 90 degrees:
Now here is another interesting block:
I have tried to use colours that are similar to the original drawing.
Here it is in a 4 x 4 block quilt:
A very pleasing design, I think.
When every other block is mirrored sideways, it looks like this:
Both of the blocks above have some kind of symmetry to them.
The one below, however, has a refreshing lack of symmetry, both in the design and especially in the colouring; – almost every patch has a new colour:
When set into a repeating pattern, like the 4 x 4 block setting below, it makes a beautiful and interesting quilt:
With every other block turned 90 degrees, it will look like this:
If we “zoom out” a bit, we might also get a better overall view of the design:
I would not mind owning a quilt like that 🙂
In conclusion, this turned out to be a most interesting and inspiring visit, – not least for me.