Sometimes I buy fabric to make a whole quilt out of the same four or five pieces of fabric as I did with this selection of fabrics that will be a quilt for my great niece Addy.

 

 

Though I buy a lot of fabric this way, lately I have been fascinated with scrappier quilts. Either those that use an everything goes kind of palette or those that use a more organized scrappy palette. For example, I used a scrappy palette of red and black for this EQ7 quilt which I worked on today.

red and black monkey wrench

The recipe for this quilt is simple…reds and fabrics that read red and black and fabrics that read black. The scrappy nature of this quilt gives it more texture than if I used a more consistent fabric palette like I did for the quilt below.

monkey wrench black and red 2

I find EQ7 is a great tool for auditioning how a given block pattern will work with a scrappy treatment. Some blocks…like this one…look busy and give up some of the motion of the design if there isn’t something that unifies the recipe and gives the eye a place to rest. I tried doing totally scrappy…everything goes…but wasn’t really happy with the look. It was a bit too busy for my taste. So…I tried it in one of my favorite color palettes–black and bright.

bright monkey wrench

I like this scrappy green and tan version too.

green monkey wrench

One of the things I like about the monkey wrench block is the way the design seems to move…or spin. But after playing with it in ways that bring out the movement aspect of the design I did a little playing with colorations that downplay that aspect.

monkey wrench 4

 

In case you’d like to join the fun and make some of your own monkey wrench blocks here is a diagram of the block and the cutting list for a finished 12″ block.

Monkey Wrench Key

 

For each monkey wrench you will need:

For  patch A  pieces cut 1 square of black and one square of red fabric that is 6 7/8 “ square. Cut each of these on the diagonal.

For patch B pieces cut 1 square of black and one square of red fabric that is 3 7/8” square. Cut each of these on the diagonal.

For patch C pieces cut 1 square of black and one square of red that is 7 1/4” square. Cut these on both diagonals.

For patch D cut 2 red and 2 black squares that are each 2 5/8”

To sew the block:

To sew the block join the patch D ‘s together as shown below to form a four patch. Then add the B blocks to the outside of the four patch unit. Add the C blocks to the outside of the resulting BD unit. And sew the A patches to the outside of the BDC units. This is a simple block to make. Turn every other block to create the interlocking design shown above.


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