Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Saffron Craig - Designer block challenge

Here at FQ HQ, we set ourselves a fun challenge to see what we could each come up with by using Saffron Craig's new 'Forest Elementals' range to create a quilt block. Here are the results with a little explanation from each of us on how we went about creating our blocks.


When thinking about this challenge I wanted to keep the overall block very simple but I also wanted to feature a little bit of each print.The result is a strip pinwheel block that measures 12.5" square. This block is also a great way to use up some of those long, narrow pieces in the scrap basket.To make this block:1: Cut 2 x 7" squares from a solid.2: Piece 15 1.5" x 7" strips together, press.3: Then cut the strip piece into 2 x 7" squares.4: Construct two HST units (As per First Issue) which will give you 4 7" blocks and piece into a pinwheel.


I really love the refreshing colours of these fabrics - the purple and orange is such a change from what has been the norm lately.Although the darker fabrics have large scale designs I wanted to show that by cutting them up and using the colours rather than the designs you can still get a striking effect.

One of the great things about this collection is the range of tones from white through to dark purple and black. This is the key characteristic that makes all the blocks here work so well.For my block I used the light tonal value prints to cut 9 squares, then added in a curved corner from the darker prints on the top left and bottom right corners of each of the nine patches before stitching them all together. I've seen this done before with a triangle in each corner but I wanted to have a little fun and play with curved corners for my block.


I couldn't decide between making a traditional or a modern block. The colours in this fabric range are so bold and striking that they scream modern quilt. I love the deer and so he had to be framed! I used a strip of Heather Bailey Nicey Jane to balance the yellow/orange of the deer.But I couldn't get the idea of making a more traditional block out of my head. Rather than one large block I made 4 smaller Greek Squares and added in more of Heather Bailey's Nicey Jane and some black solid.

As some of the fabrics had a larger print i wanted a pattern that would showcase the fabrics as much as possible. The high contrast between the light and dark fabrics shouted "whirly gigs" at me.


FQ Design Challenge Block #1

FQ Design Challenge Block #2

Saffron Craig's fabric designs are, for me, the definition of inspirational! Something about them just makes me want to create something. With this particular line, I was immediately struck by the vivid colors -- I mean, those pinks and purples are vibrant! As lovely as they are, my mind immediately called for CONTRAST. So I selected a few coordinating prints in shades of green as well as the teal dots from the new "Freebird" line by Moda to try to balance them out. Another great thing about Saffron's designs are that they are PERFECT for fussy cutting. So I drew up this quick & easy windowpane design to really show off some of the illustrations. I'm happy to share the block design on a future blog post in case you're looking for a good block to show off some prints.

We would love to see what kind of block you could come up with from using Saffron's fabrics. Show us by uploading your own version to our flickr group.

Don't forget our Saffron Craig giveaway ends this Saturday.
Please see this post for details.


  1. Wonderful blocks! I totally love the whirly gigs!

  2. What a great way to showcase the fabrics as well as each of your creative styles.

  3. I love all your different blocks, brilliant!

  4. This is what quilting is all about... all the possibilities you can do with fabric. Bravo, y'all!

  5. Loving the windowpane block!

  6. I love all the blocks for different reasons. I can really see myself stitching up some of the last design (John's), though - I love the idea of fussy cutting special fabrics and showcasing them like that. And the block with the quizzical little deer looking out through the window and the black bird perched on the ledge above is darling :-)

  7. they are all wonderful in their own way and I love that you each talked us trough the process & reasoning behind your blocks.

  8. Love that fabric, and particularly love John's block and Tacha's second block.

  9. You guys are amazing! Really inspiring blocks - especially seeing a fabric I'd be scared to cut into transformed in so many really cool ways. My vote is for Aneela's curved corners block to be a pattern in the next issue.

  10. I love seeing how the same fabric group can be made into such great quilt squares that all look so different!

  11. What a fun thing to do, hope to see more of this!

  12. Such magical fabric!!I love all the blocks but I just want to say a special hello to that little deer looking through the window.

  13. The blocks are fantastic. Thanks for all the kind words. I feel very humbled!

  14. These little accessories that conveniently pop in and out of the ventilation ports in Christian Louboutin Sale
    are perfect for personalizing Christian Louboutin Pumps
    and helping your child stand out at school. This is just a simple volleyball in black and white, so it will match all colors of Christian Louboutin Boots
    . The ballet slippers are very dainty and are a pale pink, so they tend to go better with more pastel shades of Christian Louboutin Sandals