Mod-Mood Quilt 5 ~ Get Your Puzzle On

My love for puzzles has served me well as a quilt maker.

Step 5: Get Your Puzzle On

A. In step 4 you created either rectangular or curved sections from wedged shaped strips according to your moods. At some point you will have a lot of moody “sections” made from the striped wedges. Now the fun begins. Take your sections and enjoy moving them around on your floor or work wall. Notice the kinds of relationships that are formed between colors, lines, and shapes.

B. The first rule of thumb is to go with the flow. Begin to create your composition by fitting your sections together like a puzzle. You will discover some natural fits, where the shapes seem to fit like they were cut from a pattern. Allow the shapes fall into their natural place, and your composition could take some unexpected but delightful turns.

C. The second rule of thumb is to avoid inset seams whenever possible. If you are connecting two sections of different lengths, you have two choices. You can either add to the short section or subtract from the long section so that they are of equal lengths. Once they are equal you can sew them together and thus avoid the need for an inset seam. In the example above, I have added a piece of yellow to my blue wedge section. After I sew the yellow piece to complete the wedge, I can sew it to the other blue wedge sections without an inset seam.

D. Once you begin to sew the smaller sections together you will begin to have bigger and bigger sections to sew together. Continue to follow the guidelines above until you have the sections into one complete piece. As your sections get bigger you may need to pin in order to keep things in line.

In step 6 of the quilt-along I’ll review curve piecing techniques.


The Mod Mood Quilt Givaway is open through September 1st. Visit the post for a chance to win a half yard of hand-dyed fabrics in your color range of choice. I’ll be announcing the winner during the week of September 8.

Rowing the Boat:

Please post any questions you have about the process or techniques and I will respond. Share images of your process on the Mod Mood Quilt Flickr pool. Any surprises? Discoveries? Satisfactions? Dissatisfactions? If you are working on your mood quilt, give me an update!

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3 Responses to Mod-Mood Quilt 5 ~ Get Your Puzzle On

  1. elaine quinn says:

    Back again to attempt a clarification regarding my confusion with one of these pics. This step shows a picture of several curved pieces placed on top of each other with two notations regarding where to start placing seams. On giving this more thought I wonder if what you are showing is the process of beginning to join the curved pieces to an underlying or attached background piece? It is simply not clear to me what exactly you are saying, and that just may be my ignorance on this technique. I believe you are saying that in joining these pieces one should attach the topmost piece (you say seam, but to what?) to something and then attach the next curved piece. In other words curve #1 is attached to something first, then curve #2 is attached to the bottom of #1 and curve #3 is attached to the bottom of curve # 2. If you can make any sense at all about my comment, I would certainly love to hear your reaction. Do not hesitate to let me know the problem is my ignorance. I long ago dropped being sensitive and learned to grab any knowledge that comes my way. If your knowledge encourages my brain to expand to the total freedom you have magically embraced in your quilting journey, I would be so grateful. Forgive my lengthy response, but I am a writer, not a texter. Elaine

    • sherrilynn says:

      Thanks for your question Elaine,

      Whenever you join to pieces together into one seam you want them to be of equal length so that you won’t have to sew an inset seam. Inset seams, where a point has to be turned are difficult to sew.

      Even if your pieces are curved you want to the edges of the two curved pieces to be of equal length before sewing the seam. So in the case above I added a section of yellow fabric so that the top piece would be even to the bottom piece before sewing the two curve pieces together. That’s it.

      You can continue to do this to piece your curves together. You also have the option of hand appliquéing your pieces to each other and/or to a background.

      I hope this makes sense.

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