Patchwork Sewing Patterns You Can Make Your Own

2 Apr 2012

I'm so inspired by fabrics and the endless combinations you can create. Maybe that's why I'm particularly drawn to patchwork sewing patterns. Once you start working with them, you can easily change out the fabrics and alter the arrangement.

patchwork sewing patterns
'Mini Patchwork Quilt I,'
from Quilting Line + Color.
This concept is so well illustrated in Yoshiko Jinzenji's book Quilting Line + Color: Techniques and Designs for Abstract Quilts. Yoshiko's patchwork sewing patterns are almost all based on simple geometric shapes: square, hexagon, triangle, and rectangle. But by rearranging the shapes and using color sparingly, each quilted piece has a different look.

Take, for example, Yoshiko's Mini Patchwork Quilts I and II. These quilts have almost the identical pattern. Though they have slightly different finished sizes, each is made up of 36 blocks framed in a white border.

The main difference between the two is the choice of colors and fabrics. Mini Patchwork Quilt I is characterized by the deeply colored blocks of cotton prints.

Mini Patchwork Quilt II, on the other hand, is distinguished by the predominance of solid white squares and light-colored cotton prints, some of which are sheer.

One quilt makes a colorful statement while the other seems to float ethereally.

patchwork sewing patterns
'Mini Patchwork Quilt II,'
from Quilting Line + Color.
Quilt projects with sewing patterns like these are so useful to have in your repertoire. You can use them with commercial fabrics, hand dyes, screen-printed fabrics, or vintage scraps.

I can envision version one of these mini quilts with a variety of indigo fabrics in the center and version two with segments from vintage handkerchiefs. I could also change the white border to a bright color or a pastel and achieve a completely different result.

And that's just what Yoshiko Jenzenji wants you to do: take the patterns in Quilting Line + Color and make them your own.



P.S. Do you have a favorite go-to pattern or do you start from scratch every time? What are the advantages or disadvantages? Leave your comment below!


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Comments

Grammaclem wrote
on 7 Apr 2012 5:24 PM

I most always start from scratch. If I already made a pattern I kinda know what it will look like the next time, even if I use different fabrics. It is a challenge to start from scratch.