[ Quilt Design ]

From Block to Quilt

Today, I want to give you a peek behind the scenes as I take an idea for a block and turn it into a whole quilt.  The quilt design process seems pretty intuitive once you start sewing. The fabric pieces join together and you can make it as big as you need to fill the space. Quilting is a wonderfully creative exercise and it keeps the brain active as you move from block to quilt.

Little Bit Different

My plans for the 2023 block of the month are to focus on rectangles. All of the BOM blocks will finish at 6″ by 9″, which presents a slight challenge for making a full quilt. As the saying goes, you need to begin with the end in mind. It does help the design process to know how big the final product should be.

Little Bit Different 2023 BOM

As a bonus for the Little Bit Different block of the month, I am designing a quilt around each of the monthly blocks.  And, I am offering three sizes for the quilts: lap, twin and queen. I know there are many opinions as to what exactly a twin size quilt measure!


I had to start somewhere, so I used convenient multiples of 6 and 9 to get my base measurements for the various quilt sizes. I also think about how many blocks to make for each quilt size, and then plan on negative space and borders to reach the desired size.

church dash and friendship start quilt blocks

Using 12 blocks, I can make a lap quilt that measures about 48″ x 60″.  I figure a twin size quilt should be around 60″ x 80″ and that means at least 18 blocks. Queen size quilts will be in the 80″x 90″ range, and that mans we need 25 or more blocks…quite an effort!

From Block to Quilt

Once I have a size in mind, I move to the computer to try a variety of layouts. A sketchpad works for this part too, but using a program like EQ8 or Adobe Illustrator speeds up the process. I can quickly move blocks around and change the overall size of my project.

In this short video, you can see all of the quilts from the Little Bit Different collection. The digital patterns are in my shop here.

Triangles Galore quilt

I have tried to keep modern quilting principles in mind as I explore new layouts for these rectangular blocks. My thoughts on Modern Traditionalism are in this blog post.

Free Workshop

I’d love to chat with you more about modern elements and designing quilts. Will you join me for a discussion on May 4th? Register here for a free Zoom class where I will dive deeper into the design choices that I made for the Little Bit Different block of the month program. And, get a sneak peek at some of the upcoming blocks!

woman looking through binoculars

Hope to see you then!

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About Author


Longarm Quilter, Pattern Designer, Teacher



  1. Hello,

    I surched the April Bom, but I find nothing. Only the short Video. But I cant see the block pattern. Can you help me?? Also in the other month I saw the pattern, but no how I have to make a quilt. Where can I find it?

    Sorry for my bad english. I hope you understand my question. I live in Germany.

    Greeting Guilitta

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