Beth Markel

What’s on YOUR design wall?

Posted on January 11, 2017 by Beth Markel

Greetings!  Happy New Year!  Happy Snow!  Happy Surfing…depending on where you are in the world!

I have taken a short hiatus as I was both travelling and in-studio, alternately, trying to finish 2 large projects I’ve been working on.  My goal for 2016 was 6 large projects, and by large I generally mean 65” or larger by 75”+ or close to it.  I mostly met my goal…the last large quilt is below, Misdirection, which is still a work in progress.

First is the 75” square quilt for the June wedding.  You’ll see the postage size squares, yes, they really are 1” square finished, up to the 16” x 16” large blocks of color, as I was trying to move it in a “Modern Traditional” way.  What I’ve learned in talking to young sewers, makers, and quilters, is that while they do like the idea of quilting and making quilts, they don’t want to be locked into “patterns” like most of learned on…9-patch or 16-patch in this case, becomes just part of a larger design, and the modern, circular quilting makes it current.


Modern Traditional

Modern Traditional

Rather than go on about technique, size, or difficulty, I’ll just show you what I’ve been up to.  This is the same “block” a 3-piece, free-handed cut, then squared up, in exploration of size.  So, literally, there are 3-piece blocks that are ¾” finished, up to the relatively large 3-piece blocks that are 8” finished size.  I loved exploring the size difference, and I really do love the result.


Esuchame: The Communication Paradox, #7, CHATTER

Esuchame: The Communication Paradox, #7, CHATTER

This is also a very simple strip-pieced, which I had stuck in a bin, just as large pieces of strips sewn together.  I wanted order, so cut them in 4” blocks (3.5” finished) and alternated directions.  I like where this is headed.


Escuchame: The Communication Paradox, #8 Misdirection

Escuchame: The Communication Paradox, #8 Misdirection

So, onward and upward!  I’ll check in each Friday and you can see what’s on my design wall #1, and I’ll let you know what else is going on.  What’s on YOUR design wall?

I hope each of you has a wonderful, healthy, productive, and positive year!





Janis Doucette on January 12, 2017

Nice work Beth! I especially love the Esuchame and appreciate that tiny piecework! I assume you've seen Rachel May's book, Quilting With A modern Slant. If not, well worth checking it out. I used to be a member of the group and learned a lot from that great bunch of women. I do love to piece in the "Quilt As You Go" technique.

Beth Markel on January 13, 2017

Thanks, Janis~ I've not seen Rachel May's book, but will look for it at Barnes&Noble when I am there this afternoon! Beth

Beth on January 12, 2017

I love the explosion of color in your quilts. I, too, have been playing with different sizes of "virtually" the same type of block. I find the results very interesting. Your bottom quilt would fit right into Kathy Loomis's book, "Riffs on the Rail Fence Block." The number of different looks she gets from the simple Rail Fence block is amazing.

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