Monday, February 8, 2016

The Splendid Sampler

Have you heard of this?  Pat Sloan and Jane Davidson created a 100 block Mystery Quilt that will run for 50 weeks, 2 blocks a week, with 84 designers providing 6" blocks, tips, techniques, giveaways, lots of stuff to learn.  The Facebook Group has over 10,000 followers and is growing rapidly as the February 14 start date approaches.

Here is all the info you need to get sucked in. OH, I mean to "consider" this project:
The Splendid Sampler.  I recommend the Facebook group if you do join in, there is quite a buzz there.

I only really paid attention to this two days ago and selected my fabrics to make a "Big Girl" quilt for Stella, my 8 month old  Grand-Girl:

As you can see, she is out-growing her baby quilt.  And this might take a year or two to get finished so NOW is a good time to start her next quilt.

Shopping in my stash, I came up with this palette:

The fabric amounts recommended for this project are 30-35 fat quarters.  My small pieces are fat eighths, there are 8 fat quarters, the turquoise peeking out is a yard and the big, bold floral is 2 yards--way more than enough to get started.  I may need a few more small white prints for background--there are more of those in my closet when needed so no worries.

When I posted this photo Saturday to the Facebook Group I was totally amazed with the response:  more than 260 people "Liked" this post and 45 took time to make a Comment.  Many asked about the large floral:  it's Brush Dance by Susan Rooney Design for Benartex.  It's fairly new and my local shop, Patches & Stitches, Huntsville, AL  still has it.

The thing I find so odd about many of the fabric choices people are making for this project is how many people think they have to use a SINGLE LINE OF FABRIC.  They are buying fat quarter bundles of complete lines.  Maybe because that's an easy way to get fabrics that "go" together, or maybe because new quilters think this what they are "supposed" to do.  What about YOU:  do you mix, match, shop your stash, and add different lines in the same quilt or stick with only one line??
I'm very curious about this phenomenon that I see across the QuilterNet so please let me know your opinion.

And don't even get me started on new patterns coming out that put bias on the outside edges of blocks--what is with THAT?!  Call me old-school, no bias on outer edges for me.

Let's Quilt!



  1. I have a hard enough time not stretching my blocks out when they're not on the bias !!! A whole line if fabric for me? No way! I had a post in mind about how I shop for fabric.

  2. As a scrap quilter - I work the stash and mix & match. But I understand where some people cannot make the 'fabric' decision and need that kit or fabric line to work from. We have students that way (and my SIL who is very OCD). And when fabric companies 'hawk' patterns, designers, and lines - huge sway to those. I find a lot of the new, young designers going against the grain, bias, not nesting seams, not testing patterns even - so many errors that I refuse to buy patterns

  3. Sometimes I use fabric lines, sometimes not- it depends on the look I want really. I am confused about the trend of using "just one fabric line" though- as if it's a requirement. Possibly new quilters are seeing the quilts produced by fabric designers themselves & therefore think that's the norm? (But that also leads to a discussion of fabric designer devotion which I also don't completely understand.) Maybe we as teachers need to offer more classes in color to help build confidence? Also I've noticed quilt shops organizing their fabrics more & more by line, & fewer offer a "wall of color" anymore- that does makes it intimidating to mix it up.

    Don't get me started on the bias edged blocks! I want to send specific designers back to quilting 101 sometimes!- Robin

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  6. The hardest part of quilting is deciding on what fabrics to use. So with the new fat quarters,it makes it so much easier for me. It's a starting point,so then I can pull from my own stash. It also let's me get out of my comfort zone and use colors within that fabric line that I would not normally use. And I'm learning along the way.

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  8. I suspect that newbies might be a bit more confident using a bundle of a whole line rather than picking fabrics, especially when you need a bunch of fat quarters - I also think its become popular since fabric manufacturers began making pre-cuts !

  9. oh and I also totally agree with Robin ! fabric designers have become "rock stars" and lots of people want to make quilts exactly the same !

  10. I am doing the Splendid Sampler as well. I am using purples and greens that I have collected over the years.