Thursday, October 13, 2022

Orphan blocks playing together

Hello, friends! Louise here to share more of your donated orphan blocks. It's so satisfying to find a group of friendly blocks to play nicely together into a finished quilt. Let's start with this one in red, black, and cream. It started with two sets of bear paw blocks. The ones across the bottom came to me as separate blocks, and the ones at the top are 3D and were already sewn together. That thin red line is a skinny flange. These was some extra bear fabric so I added that elsewhere for continuity. 

Sometimes I know who donated individual blocks, others are anonymous. I know in this quilt, there are  blocks from Sandy and Jan, so their names are on the label among the cheetahs on the back. Donations of big chunks of fabric like this make great backings!

Next up is this brown and turquoise piece.

Many of the blocks were cut from a coffee lover's panel, so I ran with theme right up to the bean border.

I pulled a bunch of blocks around 6-7" with coordinating colors and added borders if necessary to make them all the same size. Wouldn't you love to see the whole quilt this fun diamond scraps block came from? (Edit by Kat: those are actually mine! You can see the quilt they can from here.)

Our next group came from my big box o' bright blocks. I pulled out a variety of 8.5" blocks containing pink, purple and other bright colors. I had seen a quilt with this offset row design on someone's blog and wanted to try it. Gray makes such a lovely neutral setting for brights, I think. The binding was donated, premade and hand dyed. 

Here's another way to have a bright, friendly group of 8.5" blocks play together. This drop shadow design is quite easy to stitch up and has a dramatic end result. The background is tiny triangle fabric that lets each block pop out and look three dimensional. 

I had some 8.5" tall blocks that weren't square, so I stitched them into the back with some chicken fabric, and this quilt is ready to comfort a family.

Finally, this bold quilt features brights with black for a stained glass kind of feel. The herringbone panel across the bottom is actually one of a pair. There is another similar one across the top that you can't see because of the way the quilt is folded for the photos. Those 2 panels were donated with cut off scraps from the same project, and I pieced the scraps into the center panel.

The blue and black star, NY Beauties and diamond below the crumbs really shine with the turquoise background, I think. And look at these beautiful heart blocks! So cool, and a great way to cover a family in love. Thank you to everyone who sent in a beautiful block or two or twelve! They may be awkward orphans in your stash, but they can always find a friend here. 

Covered in Love is a 501(c)(3) charity that donates quilts to patients dying in the hospital, over 1000 so far! The September/October block drive is live now.  Check out the main post HERE if you want to get involved. 


  1. Thank you, Louise, for working more of your orphan block magic. And thanks to those who donated the blocks.

  2. Louise, always fun to see what you put together.

  3. You did such a fantastic job of putting all these random blocks together. The settings were perfect and the recipients will love these!!

  4. The minute I saw Orphan Blocks, I knew we were in for a treat! I also figured that Louise would somehow be involved. :o)) This post did not disappoint. More excellent examples of what can be done with leftover blocks and random bits when we exercise our creativity. Awesome job, Louise!!!

  5. All those quilts are fantastic! Louise, your orphan quilts never look like orphans...they were made to blend & go together. For some reason I never think about just making up random orphan blocks (a good way to practice new techniques) & send them to Kat. Maybe sometime for a block drive we could just all make up randoms of different sizes & colors, etc. & send them to Kat....just a suggestion. Thank you for all the time & effort you put into making these such beautiful quilts of comfort.

  6. Oh Louise! So nice to see you again. I am always amazed with your orphan quilts! You are so creative! I agree with Nicki - I never think to make orphan blocks just for fun. Does Kat send you the orpahan blocks or do folks send straight to you?

    1. Hi, Cindy. Thanks for your kind comment! Kat receives all the blocks and fabric donations and sends me a big box a couple of times a year.

  7. Wonderful.job with the orphans, Louise!!!! These are just great!

  8. So many gorgeous quilts. I love them all.