My First Ever String Blocks!

I’m not one to do more work than I need to, so I’ve never seen the need to create a block from five fabrics when one patterned fabric will do. However, I ended up needing them this week for my current Aussie Hero Quilt.

The request was for a landscape, and I decided on a pixelated design rather than trying to make it look realistic. All Aussie Hero quilts are around 42″ x 70″ (bunk size, plus it means only one length of backing fabric) so I tried a couple of grids to see what the optimal size would be for my pixels — the smaller the pixel square, the better the landscape detail, but also the more work it will take. I ended up deciding on a 3″ square as the base. While squares are fine for most of the picture (grass and trees) with some half-square triangles for the boundaries, I needed finer striations to represent mountain rocks, and I found that most of my darkish blue fabrics (for water) were solids. String blocks were a necessity for the mountain, and I figured I might as well make some for the sea, so I set to work, using an old Ikea instruction sheet as my base paper.* I only did six in each group, and combined with busier fabrics, HSTs and maybe even a few Y-squares or QST, there should be enough variety to please the eye.

3-inch string blocks for mountains
Mountain Blocks
3-inch string blocks for sea
Sea Blocks

*I know Bonnie Hunter recommends phone book paper but
a. Telstra stopped issuing phone books here about three years ago;
b. Our phone books definitely had smudgey ink; and
c. I buy so much from Ikea that I have multiple copies of each instruction guide and the paper is soft.

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