Nancy explained that colonial quilt makers made the quilt of "any available materials, featuring only the light and dark of the design." She goes on to say, "It will be prettier and you will like it better if you plan to piece it of lighter, daintier colors."
I did not make this block for my sampler but there's a lot of information available on how to make it. Kaye Wood has a video showing how to sew the "y" seams needed to make this block.
Jinny Beyer has a video showing how to make the block both by machine and by hand.
And, a more modern approach to making this pattern can be found here. There's even a pattern for paper piecing it here.
No matter how you make it, it's sure to create some type of optical illusion. Here's a very interesting Pinterest board that's dedicated to Tumbling Block quilts.