Hello! For quite a while now I’ve been wanting to make a Christmas tree quilt–there–have been lots of fun ones I’ve seen on blogs and on Instagram providing plenty of inspiration to get started. Because I needed to make some Christmas tree blocks for a bee I’ve been participating in this year I decided to test out a few different patterns to see if I could decide which design I want to use for my own quilt.
All of the designs I tested were a lot of fun to make (and different people might
prefer one over the other for different reasons), so I’ll give you my thoughts on the ones I tried.
Amy Smart of Diary of a Quilter has two different tutorials for her Christmas tree blocks. While I’ve seen several quilts from her designs, I didn’t realize until looking up her tutorial that she actually has two tutorials for this block…one for a mini size and one for a larger size block.
They are both super fun and fast to make, but do result in slightly irregular blocks. Since you make two at a time that are opposites, there is no fabric waste (a big plus for me). And since you have two size options to choose from you can make a mini or a large quilt relatively quickly. I figured out after making my blocks that I need to change the placement of my cuts to have my trees more centered. You can find Amy’s large block tutorial here and her small block tutorial here (note: there are more pictures along with the small block tutorial, so you may want to review that tutorial even if you are making the large blocks).
Next I tested my friend Elizabeth’s tree block tutorial. Since Elizabeth’s block uses templates, the blocks will all turn out fairly similar (a plus for my personal appreciation of “less wonky.” Elizabeth’s block is a nice size…right in-between Amy’s two blocks. Additionally, Elizabeth gives instructions for cutting multiple background sections which helps with fabric waste, too. And, you can measure the lower background and trunk sections so you don’t have to use the templates for that part of the block. The trimming of Elizabeth’s block was easiest…I really love how this one turned out. Find Elizabeth’s tutorial with free PDF download here.
These are the four blocks I made for my Bee friend (she requested trees in bright colors with two on white-on-black backgrounds and two on black-on-white backgrounds. She also requested that we not trim the blocks, so this gives you a good idea of how Elizabeth’s blocks look before finishing them up.
And here is a comparison of the size of the three blocks. Amy’s large block finishes at approximately 7″ x 9″, Elizabeth’s block at approximately 6″ x 7″, and Amy’s small block at approximately 3 ¼″ x 4 ½″.
While I was testing triangle tree designs I started something else I’ve had on my list of “want to makes” for a little while. This table runner is actually all ready for quilting now…it just got too dark to take a good picture, so I’ll share a finished photo and all the details about it soon.
If you’re wondering which pattern I decided to use for my own quilt…well…the jury is still out. I’ve got an idea that I’m going to be testing–tutorial hopefully coming soon!
Thanks so much for stopping by!
Thanks. Very helpful comparisons will save me some experimenting. Beautiful fabrics!
Thanks for the review on the different tutorials. Personally I like it more when all the trees look alike me and wonky are not so great together. Wonder which one you will choose.
Thanks .Beautiful fabric and great post!!
Very informative post as always…I too am thinking of a tree lap/throw quilt this year and this will certainly help…I'm gravitating toward the large 6x7in block?
Yes, I LOVE trees! I have about 8 different tree quilts I have wanted to make. I'll be anxious to see your finished choice.
I love the trees using the black and white fabric. Very pretty. Not fond of the wonky design. Thanks for sharing.
Janan Doster says
I love the dotted print background fabric. I can see where a non directional print is definitly needed in the background. Thanks for sharing the patterns, I have been seeing DiaryOfAQuilter tree quilts on Instagram, but I had not seen OPQuilts trees. I will anxiously be awaiting YOUR design, as I have a feeling you will combine the best of both and make a great tree pattern for us!!!
Fun to see the comparison of these blocks together. I had thought about using Amy’s blocks for my trees, but then wanted a midsize block somewhere between the two, as you noted. Thanks for the shout-out for the tutorial!