Sampler quilts have always been a favorite of mine. I love the playful way the different patterns draw your eye across the field. I believe I have mentioned this before, but some of the first sampler quilts were more functional than we knew. Before there was the internet or even quilting magazines and books, quilters would create a new block and then share it with friends and neighbors by having block exchanges. As a quilter, you would collect a stack of these random quilt blocks, not to make a sampler quilt, but as a way to record the block design for future use. The following quilts are sampler quilts. Their designers set out to make mix of blocks for one completed project. Though more modern in design, they are still beautiful and a little nostalgic of the past.
182 Day Solstice Challenge Sampler Quilt
JoAnna created this quilt from a pattern called 182 Day Solstice Challenge by Pat Sloan. This quilt was designed to be a scrap busting project. Therefore, there was no material list offered. JoAnna got to pick out every fabric. What a lovely mix. She quilted this in our shop using the Turbulance pantograph which has a lot of big swirls all over it. It adds a lot of flowy movement to this quilt. I love it!
Panel Sampler Quilt
Technically, this is not a sampler as it is a panel that she added a border to, but it has that sampler look. This was the rental certification project for Nancy, and panels are a great first quilt on the longarm machine. It was her first long arm experience, and there is less stress quilting something that you haven’t spent a ton of time creating. She chose to quilt our Periwinkle paper pantograph. It has a whole bunch of cute blossoms dancing across the top. I think it matched the feel of this quilt top perfectly.
Bee Happy Sampler Quilt
Colleen created this Block of Month quilt from Lori Holt. This is “Bee Happy”, or at least some of it. The designed quilt is much larger. However, Colleen chose to select only the blocks that spoke to her, reducing the overall size by nearly half. The end result is so cute and will make a great wall hanging or lap quilt. It is good to remember that these projects are yours to edit and rethink if you wish. Just because you start the Block of the Month project, doesn’t mean it has to look exactly like everyone else’s finished projects. She quilted this here at Quilted Joy using the Seamless paper pantograph. It is just a simple loopy meander. It is a fun way to finish a quilt that doesn’t add another theme or design element.
Sampler quilts are a great way to build your skills. You can take a whole collection of block patterns that incorporate a lot of different techniques and just learn and practice to your heart’s content. Or start a block of the month with a respected quilter you love to emulate. Either way you’ll end up with a varied top with lots to look at!