Exploring Quilting Basics

Exploring Quilting Basics: the Churn Dash Quilt Block

Hi friends!

This week in our Exploring the Basics blog series, Tammy and I are chatting about a very basic quilt block: the Churn Dash Quilt Block!

Top US quilting blog and shop, Seams Like a Dream Quilt Designs, shares about the Churn Dash Quilt block!

We have been using this block as inspiration for a series of posts on Instagram this past month. We got together with other talented quilt designers and asked them to reimagine the Churn Dash block! It has been so fun to see what they created!

Churn Dash Quilt Block

Before I can share my re-imagined block, we need to chat about the basic block!

Top US quilting blog and shop, Seams Like a Dream Quilt Designs, shares about the Churn Dash Quilt block!

The Churn Dash block is a basic 9 patch block with a square in the center, half square triangles in the corners and strips along the sides. A pretty easy block!

Need tips on making Half Square Triangles? Click here for my blog post.

While it is a very simple block, it can create some really fun patterns when the blocks are placed together in a quilt. 

Variations on the Block

Like many blocks in quilt history, this block also has other names! One popular name is the Monkey Wrench. 

Though I have also seem the Monkey Wrench used to describe another block that is sometimes called Snail’s Trail! So confusing!

Another is Shoo Fly! The Shoo Fly block skips the rectangles and just has squares and half square triangles. So I guess it really is a variation of the block, not just another name!

Top US quilting blog and shop, Seams Like a Dream Quilt Designs, shares about the Shoo Fly Quilt block!

Another variation on the Churn Dash is the Double T. In this version, the rectangles are replaced with flying geese units. This creates a T in each corner.

Top US quilting blog and shop, Seams Like a Dream Quilt Designs, shares about the Double T Quilt block!

Not sure why it is called the Double T as there are 4 of them!

My Re-Imagined Churn Dash Quilt Block

For my re-imagined Churn Dash block, I went a little crazy! First I grabbed some batik fabrics from my Painted Blossoms Signature line.

Top US quilting blog and shop, Seams Like a Dream Quilt Designs, shares about Painted Blossoms batik fabrics!

I started with a basic block, then I started playing within the sections of the block.

Top US quilting blog and shop, Seams Like a Dream Quilt Designs, shares about the Churn Dash Quilt block!

Using a corner, and 2 sides plus the center I made a smaller Churn Dash. Then I added smaller rails, more smaller HSTs to the other 2 sides, some squares… 

Top US quilting blog and shop, Seams Like a Dream Quilt Designs, shares about the Churn Dash Quilt block!

I made a crazy looking block!

This is an EQ version as I forgot to take a picture of one block when I was done!

But the fun is when 4 blocks comes together. Then you get this!

Top US quilting blog and shop, Seams Like a Dream Quilt Designs, shares about the Churn Dash Quilt block!

I love how the 4 blocks together create secondary designs; there is the center diamond in a diamond, the dark inner and outer star, the orange arrows… so many places for your eye to look!

Sometimes a quilt block looks great all on it’s own; other times it is made to work together with other blocks to create quilt magic!

Another color option!

Of course, after I made it I started thinking about a slightly different color plan! When I started the block, I used the black as the star points; very bold and dramatic. But, being a blue and green girl at heart, I had to see what I could do with a little fabric substitution!

Here is my block #2!Top US quilting blog and shop, Seams Like a Dream Quilt Designs, shares about the Churn Dash Quilt block!

And quilt #2!

Top US quilting blog and shop, Seams Like a Dream Quilt Designs, shares about the Churn Dash Quilt block!

Which is your favorite- my first crazy Churn Dash quilt or the second one?

Click here to head over to Tammy’s post to see her re-imagined Churn Dash quilt block! And it you want to see what the other designers created, click here to go to my IG and look for the last Churn Dash post with links to all the other designers!

Top US quilting blog and shop, Seams Like a Dream Quilt Designs, shares about the Churn Dash Quilt block!

Next week, Tammy and I will be up to the letter “U” in our A Quilter’s Alphabet blog series. See you back here then!

happy quilting!

Kate

4 thoughts on “Exploring Quilting Basics: the Churn Dash Quilt Block”

  1. Hard to choose, but I have to go with the second one. I’m a blue/green girl too. What size did it finish at when you put the four blocks together? Would love to see this made into several different color ways and made into a large quilt. A rainbow of colors. Would be beautiful.

    1. Susan,
      The blues just talk to me. I have been debating writing this as a pattern as I have had several requests. Adding a large size quilt of multiple blocks will be part of it and I too thought a rainbow might be fun. Who doesn’t love a rainbow? I will have to explore that idea more! The mini quilt is 20″ square.

  2. I just found this post in my junk Mail. I love the quilt with the orange arrows. It just says wow to me. Thanks for the eye candy and inspiration.

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