Block One Because I Just Had To

I’ve been organizing 2.5 inch strips of Aboriginal fabrics over the last few weeks in anticipation of making a scrappy trip quilt, and I’m loving how these fabrics look together.

And tonight I just wanted to see one scrappy Aboriginal trip block worked up. So I did it! Here’s block number one.

I’m making this according to Bonnie Hunter’s free tutorial. It tells you that you should choose the most bold fabric of your six to be the center diagonal line. The boldest fabric can be light, it can be dark, it can be a strong pattern. It all depends on how it relates to the fabrics it’s combined with.

When I put this set of six fabrics together, I was thinking that the red in the center of the photo below was the boldest fabric in the set.

But when I started putting the sliced strip sets together for the block, it was clear that the turquoise was actually the boldest fabric. This makes me think that I’m going to need to play each block by ear. I’m selecting what I think is the boldest fabric when I’m putting each set of six strips together, but it may look completely different as I get further along with each block. So I’ll evaluate how the fabrics read as a set as I’m making each block.

I’m pretty happy with how this first block looks. I think this will be a really fun quilt.

It was a stressful day back to work. So many meetings and so many emails to catch up on. I worked until after 7 pm tonight! I was so tired that this one block was all I could muster.

I received some more photos of Frankenbags made by blog readers. These first two were made by Susan Ermer. And wow! Two really cool bags. I love how she combined the aboriginal fabrics… using that one larger piece of a print on the front, and doing the wavy piecing on the back. I just love this bag. And take a look at her sea glass bag! It’s just so cool! Now I’m going to have to make one or seven of those! What a fun and bold bag!

This next bag was made by Katherine Wingate. She made this bag for a dear friend and used the friend’s husband’s college colors. Katherine said she’s never made any bags or purses or anything before. She’s only been quilting less than 2 years. I just love this!!! I really love seeing people making something they’ve never made before and just boldly jumping in! I love your bag, and I love your story even more.

And here’s another bag Katherine sent me a week or so ago and it got lost in the shuffle. She used blocks leftover from a one block wonder quilt she made. And this bag is a great use for those fun blocks. I love the warm fall colors in this bag. My mom would have loved this bag. Those fall colors were her absolute favorite. And the bold black and whites are so good! And that green jumble lining… you must know how I feel about that!!! Gah!

Thanks to Susan and Katherine for your photos and your enthusiasm!

Three more really hectic days of work before I’m officially on my two week vacation!

21 Replies to “Block One Because I Just Had To”

  1. Hi 👋 I am still fairly new to quilting and just ADORE your work!! I would love to try making a bag for myself and was just wondering if you could please tell me what the name of the big square blocks is in these ones and where I may find the patterns please? Thank you so much! Nicky from Perth Australia

    Sent from my iPhone



    1. None of the bags in this blog post were made by me. These were all made by my blog readers. So I’m not sure what specific blocks they’ve made. You can really use any block you like… any pattern, any size, any fabrics. Even use up orphan blocks that you have left over.



  2. Good morning!

    I absolutely love your bags and tutorials. I’ve been making quilts and bags like mad for an upcoming juried artisan market. I wondered if you’d be willing to share your thoughts on pricing – as this is new to me.

    Quilts and bags on my website:

    I’m thinking g $125 for totes and $75 for smaller bags like these

    I hope this question is not too intrusive!

    Love your tag line too.

    All best, Laurie

    Sent from my iPad


    Liked by 1 person

    1. Pricing really depends on what you think it’s worth… mostly what you think your time is worth. Unfortunately, a lot of people don’t think your time is worth much. But if you can find a smaller number of people who DO understand it and like you’re stuff, you can ask for more. I’m selling my Frankenbags for $75 plus shipping. $100 if they have a zipper placket. I’d like to sell them for more, but I don’t know if I could. I’m not making them to sell… I’m making them because I like making them. Being able to sell a few just to get them out of my house is a bonus. If I was trying to make it a business, I’d want to get more.

      I have between four and six hours invested in each bag I make. If you take out the cost of materials, I’m only making about $11 an hour, which isn’t much. I think I’m worth more.

      I’m also only selling mine through word of mouth. I just can’t keep up with a larger demand.



  3. The bags on today’s blog are the best ever! I’m the One Block Wonder Queen (or at least Princess) and have leftover blocks and now I’m going to use some in Frankenbags! Also, thanks for the tip on those TATW blocks. I have an Ice Storm in progress so I’ll be fol!owing your progress on the blocks with Aboriginal fabrics.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Most of the Aboriginal fabrics I use are from M&S Designs. You can find their webpage to look at their fabrics. I have purchased most of mine when visiting quilt stores. I usually just buy a few pieces here and there.

      I Have a local quilt store that has a pretty good selection of them and sells them online. you should check them out.

      I haven’t purchased much of this online. So I’m not terribly familiar with online shops that have a good selection.

      good luck!


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