Churn Dash Checkers: A Visit with Deanne Eisenman

Today we’re welcoming designer Deanne Eisenman as a guest blogger on Quilty Pleasures. She’s going to tell us all about her scrappy Churn Dash Checkers quilt featured in our November/December 2016 issue:

Hi! I’m Deanne Eisenman of Snuggles Quilts. I am a quilt pattern designer and teacher. Quilting and designing has been part of my life for over 25 years. During that time, I have evolved into a scrap quilter who is inspired by antique quilts and traditional blocks. Add a bit of appliqué to the project and it’s complete! My project, Churn Dash Checkers, that appears in the Nov/Dec 2016 issue of Quiltmaker reflects this style evolution. Even though it has no appliqué, it’s scrappy and features traditional blocks.

Churn Dash Checkers 3 Churn Dash Checkers: A Visit with Deanne Eisenman

Inspiration for this quilt came from the Churn Dash block itself. This block, which originated in the early 1800s, has always been one of my favorite traditional blocks. To reflect my scrappy style, I decided to make the blocks in a variety of colors instead of just one color combination.

Churn Dash Checkers 4 Churn Dash Checkers: A Visit with Deanne Eisenman

I like to combine 2 or 3 traditional blocks in a quilt and create a new look and add some movement. By using an Irish Chain style block as an alternating block and setting everything on point, I think I achieved my goal. I chose to keep the Irish Chain blocks as neutral as I could so they would not overshadow the Churn Dash blocks.

And as any self-respecting scrap quilter knows …. you need to use all those scraps! So, that was the inspiration for the colorful pieced border used to frame the quilt center.

Here are a couple of tips to make piecing these blocks and this quilt a fun experience:

Anytime you complete an element of a block, like the half-square triangle square units in the Churn Dash blocks, be sure to measure those units and verify that they are the correct size before you continue. If the units measure correctly, your blocks will go together smoothly every time.

measuring 4 Churn Dash Checkers: A Visit with Deanne Eisenman

Second tip: A design wall or a large floor space is necessary when piecing the blocks of this (or any) scrap quilt. Laying out the blocks helps you to visualize what the finished quilt will look like. It will also help you keep similar colors separated.

Churn Dash Checkers Churn Dash Checkers: A Visit with Deanne Eisenman

That’s all for now! I hope you enjoy making Churn Dash Checkers!

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Thank you for joining us today, Deanne!

If you’d like to make Churn Dash Checkers and don’t have a copy of our November/December ’16 issue, print and digital copies are available in our online store. 

digital pattern is also available for Churn Dash Checkers.

Be sure to also check out Deanne’s online course, Sew-on-the-Go with Needle-Turn Hand Appliqué. This six-lesson course will take you through all the steps of creating a beautiful appliqué wall hanging, Bloomin’ Days.

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