Growing up, one of my closest friends was a Mennonite.  Joyce lived on a farm and her family — indeed the entire Mennonite community — was extremely self-sufficient.  They grew their own food, bottled everything from peas to poultry.  Joyce’s family sold eggs.  Her cousin’s family had milk cows and sold milk.  After my father died, my mom decided to move us across country.  When it came time to load the moving van, the men from the Mennonite community came and loaded it for us.  The Mennonite women raided their pantries and provided us with enough bottled food to keep us fed for 6 months.  What a blessing!  One of my gifts from Joyce when I left was a bag of scraps.  All the dresses that were too small or too worn out to be used by anyone else in the family were cut into strips, about 1 1/2″ wide.  These strips were sewn together in lengths, then fashioned into a long braid, which was then turned into a rug.  Absolutely nothing in that home went to waste.  This block reminds me of my old friend, both in name and assembly.

Start to finish, this block took me about 20 minutes.  And half of that was figuring out which fabric to use.

2013-04-13 19.06.53Since the center of the block is such a large square, I took the time to fussy cut some pretty fabric for it.  Then I took four dark triangles and sewed one to each side, first to the top and bottom, then to the right and left.  I also chose to press the seams open on this block as well.


2013-04-13 19.13.44After that, it was a simple matter of sewing the light corners to the growing block, then pressed the seams open.

The instructions for this block call for two fabrics.  I chose to use three, since I wanted to fussy cut the center square.  The light fabric I used for the outer triangles is in the same fabric line as the center, so it all works together.  This would be a great block for a quick quilt, and can easily be adapted to any size.