Ilonka Harz: Caleidoscope Blocks

  • Duration: 7 hours (1 hour lunch break)
  • Participants: 12
  • Difficulty: Intermediate

Who doesn’t know them, the eye-catchers at every quilt exhibition? Sometimes they are a firework of colours, sometimes they are restrainedly elegant.

Learn in this day course how to easily create kaleidoscope blocks and join them together to create an atmospheric quilt.

General information about the fabric

  • Please do not pre-wash the fabric!
  • Please do not use batik or hand-printed fabrics. They do not have a repeat (= pattern repetition in the longitudinal thread run) and are therefore unsuitable for kaleidoscope blocks.
  • Please do not use panel fabrics (panels), they exceed our time frame.
  • The piece of fabric should be continuous, i.e. not pieced.

Patterns and colours

  • Colours: bright and rich in contrast!
  • Patterns should be as curvy as possible, so do not use grid or line patterns.
  • Pattern size: mixed, from tiny to palm-sized and larger dominant pattern is about palm-sized (approx. 10*10 cm)
  • Repeat length approx. 30 cm; more is always possible, but it should not be less

Examples from my fabric stash:

Fabric requirements

We are sewing hexagons and need 6 times the repeat length, so e.g. 6 x 30 cm = 180 cm. (I would then buy 200 cm with a safety margin). Please do not piece!

Preparation for the course

We do not work the whole fabric, but only half the fabric width (approx. 50 cm) over the whole length of the fabric. This will result in enough hexagons for a small quilt.
Most of the fabrics are half broken. Please divide the fabric along this break.

Material List:

  • Fabric strip as a continuous piece of fabric, approx. 50 cm wide, min. 6* repeat length (see above)
  • Flower head pins, they have such a flat head that the cutting ruler lies stable on them.
  • 60 mm diameter rotary cutter, if available, otherwise 45 mm diameter rotary cutter
  • 2 x freezer labels or Post-Its
  • Cutting ruler 60 cm or 24
  • Cutting ruler 30 cm or 12″ with 60° line (60° special ruler is not necessary)
  • Cutting mat
  • Sewing machine, ready to use (incl. power cable, foot pedal, knee lever if necessary)
  • Standard sewing foot (for 0.75 cm or 1/4″ seam allowance)
  • Machine sewing needles, universal needle 80 gauge or, if available, Top-Stitch 80 gauge
  • Machine sewing thread, matching fabric colour or neutral colour, e.g. light grey
  • Marker pen or soft pencil
  • Small iron and portable ironing board
  • Usual sewing accessories (scissors, seam ripper, etc.)
  • Digital camera or photo-capable smartphone
  • Electricity: extension cord and distributor
  • Handicraft glasses, if necessary
  • Fabric to pin the pieces on / design wall
  • Writing pad and pen for notes
  • Drink
  • “Nerve food” – hopefully not necessary 😉

Class Fee: € 90

The class fee also includes the admission fee for the day of the class!

  • Class Name: Caleidoscope Blocks
  • Class ID: IHA-KB

Click here to book a class!

All images ©Ilonka Harz, used by kind permission of the artist.