How to do wonky!

Sharing how to make wonky nine-patch blocks is something I should have done long ago. I think I learned this from Sandi Cummings book, Thinking Outside the Block. It’s the easiest and quickest method I’ve ever seen.

Take 2 squares, any size you want. Keep in mind that every cut and every seam will make the block smaller, so start with something larger than you want to end with by about 2″.

Scrappy square 1

I’ve been enjoying working with brights and whites, but I’ve done this with many, many other combinations. Stack the fabrics RIGHT SIDES UP. These squares need two cuts to make a center strip. Make the cuts at an angle.

Scrappy square2

Switch the top center strip with the bottom one and sew the blocks back together.

Scrappy square3

Then stack those blocks (right sides up, of course) and cut another center strip, switch, resew and you have a whacky nine patch block. Don’t try to match seams–you are trying to make this wonky! Sometimes those seams line up, though, even when you aren’t trying!

Scrappy square4

Scrappy square5

Scrappy square6

(These particular blocks aren’t very wonky because the cuts I made were not at a very severe angle.)

I don’t worry about what size blocks I’m making until final assembly time. They can all be trimmed to the same size and assembled traditionally. They can be cut up, inserts added, fabric added to the sides—anything you’d like to make them even more wonky. For me, the fun comes in starting with wildly different sizes and being forced to add fabric or whack off chunks of fabric to make the blocks fit together. It’s more challenging that way and I’m happier with a little crazier result!

Here’s the finished baby quilt made in exactly this way, and I don’t think I could have gotten it much wonkier. Glad all the baby cares about is warmth and color, but I do hope mom and grandma like it, too!


LInking up to Off the Wall Friday!


6 thoughts on “How to do wonky!

  1. Thank you so much for directions. As a traditional hand piecer and quilter, this will be different for me, for sure! I’ll save the curvey idea for later! I plan to share this idea with my small sewing group…maybe they want to be “wonky” too! But first, my tomatoes must be canned and another truck load of mulch hauled, unloaded and spread….ah life!


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