Modern Monday - Block 10

Snowball Variation
Block 10 - Snowball Variation
The Snowball block is usually used as a block to offset the main block in the quilt to create a secondary pattern. It is a simple block that requires very little piecing, but it adds just a bit of something that a plain block doesn't. This is a variation because of the square in the center. A regular Snowball would be all one fabric with the contrasting triangles on the corners.

I chose an orange print, matching (sort of - mine doesn't match perfectly) orange solid and medium/light gray for the corner triangles.

Again, this is hugely improvised so over-cut everything so you'll have a big enough block at the end (don't ask how I know!)
  • From the orange print, cut a 3" - 3 1/2" square
  • From the orange solid, cut 2 strips  the same width you cut the print x ~5" long AND 2 strips ~7" - 8" long x 4" - 5" wide.
  • From the gray, cut 2 squares ~3 1/2" - 4". Cut each in half on the diagonal. 
(Note: the following photography may be really bad at times. I really have to invest in a how-to-take-photographs manual!)
Here's the fabrics I chose. I couldn't decide on which gray, so I waited to the end to decide.
To sew the center strip in a wonky way, I laid the center square on the strip and cut in a random diagonal. I laid my pieces right sides together. If you are using a fabric that can't be reversed for the solid, then lay your pieces both sides up.
After cutting, I turned the solid over so the pieces would fit together perfectly.

Sew and press to one side. Repeat with the other side to make the center strip.
Then repeat the process with the outer strips. This is where it can get tricky. Make sure you have enough fabric after each seam is sewn to make it at least 6 1/2". I didn't and ripped out the right side and added a wider piece, which made my center square off center (a happy accident to be sure since I love how it turned out in the end!) Of course I was running out of fabric at this point and had to piece two solids together to get a piece big enough, but I wasn't going to start over!

Once you're done piecing, cut to 6 1/2". This is where you'll know if you have enough!

Then cut the corners off in random sized, but make sure you don't cut off too deep or too shallow. Keep about 2 1/2" to 3" in mind for the cuts.

Add your triangles, making sure there will be enough fabric to make the flip! (Like how my gray turned magically purple!)
After the corners are added.

Trim again to 6 1/2".
I do have to add that if this block didn't turn out so darn cute, I might have cried. I'm learning that improv quilting is a lot to me like paper piecing - it's good to know how to do it, but it really wastes a lot of fabric along the way. I don't think I could make a whole quilt of improv snowballs, but it sure would be cute!


  1. i'm such a miser with my fabric! i hate the feeling that i'm wasting fabric - but this is awfully fun! it would be fun to pair it with a wonky nine patch.


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