Project Quilting – Orphan Blocks

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Today was supposed to be another #NaBloPoMo post, but I figured that talking about a finished quilt is a perfectly good reason to postpone it until tomorrow.  Instead, I wanted to share with you my finished project for this week’s Project Quilting Challenge.  So without further ado, I present to you “Annie.”

Orphan Block Quilt

This week’s theme was Orphan Blocks and UFOs- hence the name “Annie”.  I loved that this was the theme, because using up blocks that have already been completed and finishing up UFOs doesn’t take a ton of time, which meant a bigger project than I’ve made the last couple weeks, not huge, but bigger.

Orphan block quilt closeup

I started the process by pulling out my Orphan Block box, and seeing what I had.  I had a few blocks that I had made, but most of my orphan blocks were pieced by someone else and included in packages of scrap fabric I had purchased.  It was kind of cool to get to look thru all of those old hand pieced blocks again.  The only problem with the hand pieced blocks is that most of them were odd sizes, so I had to trim them down to make them work.  That means a lot of the blocks aren’t perfect representations of what the blocks should be, but that did make for a more interesting design.

orphan blocks quilt

For the back of the quilt, I wanted a simple solid background, but when I was pulling fabric, I ran across a linen I had sewn some of my grandma’s doilies to in an attempt at recreating a quilt I had seen online and loved.

orphan block quilt back

At the time, I wasn’t happy with my design, but when I pulled it from the pile, it seemed perfect to make a UFO quilt top into the back of my orphan blocks quilt. And best of all, that makes this little quilt double sided.

orphan blocks quilt

I quilted up this project using Aurifil thread to go with the linen. Using the same shade on both sides also solves the issue I’m having with the quilting looking odd on my other projects.  The quilt was bound with left over binding scraps and 2.5″ strips. It finishes at approximately 36×42″ and will make a great lap quilt.

orphan block quilt

What do you do with your orphan blocks?

Sharing over at:
Finish It Up Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts, Thank God It's Finished Friday at Quokka Quilts,
Project Quilting Orphan Block & UFO Challenge at Persimon Dreams, Oh Scrap! at Quilting 
is More Fun than Housework


  1. Lisa on February 6, 2015 at 9:39 am

    These orphan blocks look surprisingly well together given that they are from such different sources. They make a really fun quilt.

    • Andrea on February 6, 2015 at 9:53 pm

      Thanks so much Lisa. I was a little worried about mixing my orphan blocks with the vintage ones, because my style is so different, but I’m glad that I did.

  2. Claire on February 6, 2015 at 9:52 am

    Great save of orphan blocks!

    • Andrea on February 6, 2015 at 9:51 pm

      Thanks so much Claire! I was just glad to finally have a project for a few of them. I still have more that will need to wait for the next project.

  3. Kim of Persimon Dreams on February 6, 2015 at 9:56 am

    This is such a great quilt! I just want to wrap up and snuggle in it!

    I’ve used my orphan block to make patchwork animals – like owls, giraffes, and foxes 🙂 They’re also great to incorporate into bags and table runners!

    • Andrea on February 6, 2015 at 9:51 pm

      Aww…. patchwork animals sound fun. Good thing I don’t have kids or I’d have those all over the house.

  4. anna on February 6, 2015 at 9:57 am

    I had quite a few orphan blocks that someone gave me years back. She had been experimenting with quilt block making and decided she didn’t like the craft. I found the colour combinations garish or dark and muddy. A few months ago the ladies at church needed some “favors” for a tea so I made little bags using Valerie Custom Quilting’s pattern for the Quick and Easy Coin Purse. Quick and easy for me, and the ladies thought they were the bee’s knees. I find I have one orphan block left which I may incorporate into my crazy quilt (if I ever get time to work on it again!).

    I really like Annie! Isn’t it fun to make something out of “nothing”?

    • Andrea on February 6, 2015 at 9:50 pm

      Thanks Anna! I’m sure the coin purses were great. I often incorporate the fabrics I don’t love into crazy quilts. They always seem to work well there, which is good, because I tend to have a lot of those fabrics thanks to scrap packs. The best part of the project though, has to be how quick this quilt went together, which I needed for this challenge.

  5. Jenn @ A Quarter Inch from the Edge on February 6, 2015 at 10:47 am

    My orphan blocks often turn into baby quilts (if there are enough of the same) or sometimes into zipper pouches. Thanks for linking up with TGIFF!

    • Andrea on February 6, 2015 at 9:47 pm

      Thanks for stopping by Jenn! I like the idea of making a few more zipper pouches.

  6. WaggonsWest on February 6, 2015 at 6:49 pm

    Great job. I love the lace on the back.

    • Andrea on February 6, 2015 at 9:47 pm

      Thanks! Now I just have to figure out what to do with the rest of the lace I have.

  7. Lucy Wilson on February 7, 2015 at 6:29 pm

    its like an eye spy quilt :O) The more I look at it, the more I notice <3

    • Andrea on February 8, 2015 at 9:29 am

      I hadn’t thought about that, but it really is like an I Spy quilt. Thanks for stopping by!

  8. Carla on February 8, 2015 at 11:35 pm

    It’s like you made a sampler quilt in a week. It’s such a great use of orphans and the back is so fun. Annie is a great name for your pretty quilt.

    • Andrea on February 9, 2015 at 6:08 am

      Thanks so much Carla. I really enjoyed this process and it was GREAT to be a be able to get a whole quilt done in a week.

  9. Megan Null on February 13, 2015 at 3:42 pm

    What fun! I love this lap quilt. Annie is a clever title and it’s truly a leftovers project… even the back and binding! I’m impressed. 🙂

    • Andrea on February 13, 2015 at 6:49 pm

      Thank you Megan! I really enjoyed working on this project. Now, if I could just find time to work on my other quilting projects.

  10. Cynthia Brunz on March 2, 2015 at 10:11 pm

    This is the perfect post for this week’s Oh Scrap! This orphan block quilt is south fun!

    • Andrea on March 2, 2015 at 10:22 pm

      Thanks Cynthia! I had a lot of fun making it. I’m looking forward to making another, but will need more orphan blocks, which means I need to wait until I get a few more quilts finished. Thanks so much for stopping by.

  11. anna in spain on March 3, 2015 at 2:13 am

    I managed to piece a couple of crazy panels this weekend, and I found the bag with the cut-off pieces of orphan blocks I had used to make the favours, and put them in the mix. It’s wonderful how “impossible” blocks fit together–kind of like friendships in real life! I really like what you’ve done with Annie. Are you going to keep her, or will someone else adopt her?

    • Andrea on March 3, 2015 at 8:20 am

      Thanks Anna! I always enjoy adding orphan blocks to projects. For now Annie is living in my living room. My husband actually rolled her up and stuck her in front of the door to stop the winter drafts! Eventually though, she’ll probably end up moving on to be friends with a new baby.

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