Saturday, November 30, 2013

Beggar's Block quilt block

Beggar's Block
June 30, 1933-The Beggar's Block is from "pre-revolutionary days when materials were difficult to obtain. Needleworkers begged and bartered scraps from friends and neighbors; hence the name" wrote Nancy Cabot in her Chicago Tribune column when debuting her pattern for the Beggar's Block which sold for "5 cents in stamp or coin."

The Pennsylvania Dutch called it Cats and Mice and the midwest and southern states called it Scrap Bag.

She continued by saying, "No matter what the name, the pattern is a delight to the thrifty quilter."

I agree. I love this block! So much so that I have a pattern called Fluttering Around based on the Beggar's Block that I designed in early 2011 as one of the designs for my Double Nickel Quilt Challenge.

Fluttering Around
For those of you not familiar with my challenge, I challenged myself to figure out 55 ways to use 5" squares of fabric in my quilts during my 55th year.  My Fluttering Around quilt does not have the blank square in the center of the block like the original Beggar's Block.  It does however use up lots of scraps and or charm pack squares like the original block was intended to do. The quilt uses 199 5" squares of fabric for the 99 butterfly blocks (I think the block looks more like a butterfly) and scrappy border.  The pattern works great with 2 1/2" jelly roll strips also.  A pattern is available for immediate download here.

There is a whole post, from July 2012, about the Beggar's Block at Quilt Inspiration . There is also an old pattern here.

I made my 6" finished Beggar's Block differently than the larger block used in Fluttering Around.  I paper pieced the smaller block like this and it was very easy! The center is all one piece!

You can download the pattern for the 6" finished block paper pieced block here.  The Beggar's Block can also be found in Electric Quilt's Blockbase  program as #1758b.

Tomorrow-Linked Diamonds

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