Orphan blocks

I recently “rescued” an orphan block. (Non quilters: an orphan block is one that is either left over from a previous quilt or one that was a trial and proved the project had flaws so was abandoned.) Recently the Dresden Lady was offered, and I couldn’t resist.

dresden lady quilt block

The block is about 21 inches square–another one to add  borders to in order to make it wheel chair lap quilt size. The fabric is very pastel (all my yellows are too bright) and the print very small. So the project is in the brainstorming phase.

In the past I have had fabric that matches or closely resembles fabric in the block, and that gives a nice unity.

orphan block 30's fabric

This orphan ended with the big green triangles, and I had some matching green fabric to unite with the start and to break the two different shades of lavender. It became a preemie quilt.

another orphan block

This one ends before the narrow black border. A quilt with such small pieces couldn’t take heavy borders, so I planned the one-inch square checkerboard rows. For them I had a fabric that was a close match to the rectangles in the orphan: the backgrounds were the same, the figure was a slightly different shade. This orphan block also became a preemie quilt, 30 x 30.

I don’t have the luxury of matching fabric for the Dresden Lady, so I will have to find another way to create unity and the illusion that the whole was planned from the start.

I’m linking with others who are planning on their design walls at Design Wall Monday.

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1 Comment

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One response to “Orphan blocks

  1. This was inspirational, I must say! I have several orphan blocks and I just keep adding to them and throwing them back into the closet. Much better to get them out and use them. I especially like the checkerboard borders–that turned out really beautiful!

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