Variation on a variation

Mom was looking for a new project to work on, so we flipped through magazines and books looking for inspiration. I came across a lovely possibility in Fons & Porter’s Best of Love of Quilting magazine (also found in the August/September 2009 issue of Love of Quilting). It’s called Granny’s Stars, and you see a beautiful version here, in colors that are very true to the original quilt pattern.

Of course, I hate to follow patterns. Applique isn’t really my thing, either. As I looked at the photo in the magazine, I realized that one relatively small design element increased the difficulty level, and with a teeny little change, almost unnoticeable in the finished design, it became a much easier project.

In the process, I did some searching to try to find if there was a traditional block in this design. I found a block from 1936 that is almost identical to Granny’s Stars, called Arrowhead.

Here’s an EQ7 illustration of Granny’s Stars:

And an illustration of Arrowhead:

And an illustration of my slightly revised block:

Side by side – see the differences?

This variation allows you to use the basic components Jeanne and I have covered so far in the Skill Builder Series to create the block. If you can make a nine patch, flying geese, and quarter square triangles, you can do this block. If I had to put a skill level to it, I’d call it Adventurous Beginner.

We decided this quilt would look good scrappy, and we chose colors based on what we thought the recipient would like. Here’s an illustration of the whole quilt in the chosen colorway:

It’s pretty traditional, but the large (16″) block could easily accommodate more contemporary fabrics. Here are some illustrations:

Mom’s working away at this – here are her blocks so far:

Hug Quilt in Progress

It’s very difficult to take photos of items on the design wall. Here’s why:

Design Wall-way

Yep, we have a design “wall-way.” (Get it? Wall + Hallway? I crack myself up.) And you may recognize these blocks –

Test Your Skills Sampler so far

I actually have nearly all of the blocks done so far for the Test Your Skills Sampler. I have to make two more and then I’ll be caught up. Funny that I’m behind on making blocks for MY OWN quilt along. This weekend I made 21 blocks. Yep, I was that far behind. Not good.

Did you get any fabulous Black Friday deals? My mom braved the crowd at JoAnn Fabrics and scored this full roll of Warm & Natural batting.

Batting Score

It’s regularly $520 (that’s 40 yards at $13 a yard!), but she had a 50% off coupon, plus a 20% off your total purchase coupon (or was it 25%?), so she paid about $200.

As you can see at the bottom, Buttercup thinks it’s a giant scratching post, which annoys me to no end. I need to put it up, or at least wrap something around it. In the meantime, she also uses it as a place to nap…

Buttercup and the Batting

…and a step toward the top of the bookshelf – and the toy mousie residing there!

Buttercup with Batting

Isn’t she ‘dorable?

Buttercup with Batting

I know, that cat has me wrapped around her extra toes.



  1. Beautiful block! I enjoy following your challenge. Thank you for making it newbie proof. I look forward to creating this in the near future. I’m sure my kitty cat will be helping me on my sewing table. She loves her rabbit fur mice. Loves to hid them under the covers on my side of the bed. Cannot wait for the day when she plants a live one on me! LOL

    Your Mom really made a huge score. She is a really brave woman. Our lines at Joann’s are just crazy on Black Friday, and most of the fabric is in carts waiting to be cut! LOL

  2. What a GREAT deal your Mom got! I went there later with my aunt and cousin’s wife and it was a crazy long wait for us to get our $1.49/yd flannel cut. But worth the wait!

  3. I almost bit on that big ‘ol roll of batting with the coupon, too, but then realized I didn’t have anywhere to put it!

    Totally in love with Buttercup — she is too cute!

  4. i like the block change you did (though i seem to love complicated blocks so i probably would have made the first one). have you thought of setting that block on point? i keep tipping my laptop to look at it that way 🙂
    i avoid black friday shopping like the plague, but we were in Madison and i wanted more of the Daisy Mae line, so i went and dragged Ben and Henry along. blech! we did get a good deal on a recordable book for Henry. and i left half of the daisy mae line there and got more sugar creek instead.

  5. I don’t know any cats like that. At all.
    Certainly not the one who is sitting on my legs right now.

    Not at all.

  6. OMG I was about to leave a comment about the arrowhead (a block I have loved for awhile now) until I saw the Warm & Natural roll. DROOL. That just makes me want to finish about 8 quilts right now!!!

  7. I just got your updated post on organization but it is password protected. I don’t know where to get a password to unlock it! Any suggestions?

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