A more recent method of setting your quilt blocks is the tilted block. Here is one example of this idea-
And another example using a different background fabric around each block-
There are a couple of ways to make a block like this. There is a tutorial on the Why Not Sew? blog entitled Topsy Turvy Sashing that gives a similar look(shown below). Just insert your Nancy Cabot blocks where she has plain blocks with sashing. You could also use her idea and add a straight sashing around your Nancy Cabot blocks before adding the "topsy turvey" sashing.
Fons and Porter have a video that uses a different method to get this tilted look. You can watch it here. One advantage of using this type of layout for your sampler quilt is that the blocks get bigger so you don't need as many blocks!
I made a quilt with tilted blocks several years ago. I wish I had a picture now! Anyway, I started by framing my blocks with a wide border like is shown in the Fons and Porter video but instead of making a template I just used a square ruler and started by cutting two sides of one corner and then squared up the block. I can't find a tutorial or video of my method for making a tilted block so maybe I should make one. My method is much less work in my opinion!
Have you ever thought of using a block layout as a quilt layout? That is just what I did for this next example. I used the design of the Flying Squares quilt block and used it as the design for my quilt. This size is more suitable for a wall hanging or table runner if using your 6" Nancy Cabot blocks because it would only finish at 30" square. Of course, you could also use larger blocks. Notice I used only red and white for this example? I think a whole Nancy Cabot sampler quilt would be stunning if made with only two colors. Anybody trying that?
For more ideas on on how to lay out your quilt, look at my Pinterest board where I have collected ideas of various ways to use sashing in your quilt. I will add to this board as I find more ideas so feel free to follow it if you want to keep updated.
Adding sashing in the center of the quilt is another interesting idea! This quilt from swim bike quilt has two rows inserted. Yet another way to make your quilt bigger and require less blocks. There are some tips in the blog post about adding sashing/borders to this quilt.
If you know of any creative ways to lay out a quilt, let me know and I'll post about it.