The Yoshiko Jinzenji's Modern Sampler QAL with the Salty Oat

Quite awhile ago I saw a post on Instagram advertising a Quilt-A-Long hosted by The Salty Oat for Yoshiko Jinzenji's Modern Sampler. The little picture on my phone looked so adorable I took a screenshot. A little bit later I found her post and got a little bit excited, excited enough that I bought the pattern. When it came, I selected and bought the solid background fabric. Then, I put it on the shelf to work on some swaps with nearing deadlines and some Christmas projects.

Over winter break (the University I work for banks some holidays from throughout the year so we can shutdown between Christmas and New Years), I opened it up and wanted to catch up on the QAL. Yikes! Twelve blocks with templates for itty bitty wonky pieces. Ugh! After I got over the urge to throw it in the trash and toss the six yards of Kona Smoke into my stash, I dutifully traced all the blocks on white butcher paper. I pulled leftovers from the OMQG's charity quilt to use for the scraps ... Kona Red, Kona Sunny, and Kona Capri. Fortunately, by being behind, I could read others' posts about their first blocks. My adventures with Blocks A through E follow. I should note that many blocks have the same borders. For consistency, I'm opting to do all the borders at the same time.

  • Block A is pretty straightforward half-square triangles so it went together pretty quickly. I actually haven't done a lot of HST's. Over the last few years when there have been many posts and projects using HSTs, I was fascinated by improv piecing and hiding my rulers in their shelf. A little Googling and reading and I was ready to cut and piece.
  • Block B gets a little more complicated. The original version of this block had 51 or 52 individual pieces in five neat rows. I opted to foundation paper-piece this block. In my first attempt, I tried to include all of those pieces. It was a bit wonkier than I wanted so in the second attempt, I combined some of the pieces that were going to be the same color. When it was finished, I realized it is backwards and that I should have traced it upside down. Fortunately, there aren't any words because we're going with backwards on this one. :)
  • Block C tosses in curved piecing. In completing my Shades of Grey Challenge Quilt last year, curved piecing and I came to terms. The tiny piece inside the handle seemed a bit small so I began construction by hand-piecing the handle and its center. Then I machine=-pieced the gray background around the handle followed by attaching the handle to the cup and, finally, the remaining background. The saucer and additional background strips were easy peasy.
  • Block D was back to itty bitty pieces sewn into strips. Back to foundation paper piecing. Have I mentioned that I don't particularly enjoy foundation paper piecing? Anyway. From the start, I combined like-colored pieces and am happy with the first and only shot at this block. I actually kind of like this block and could see making a bigger piece with it if I can figure out how to strip piece rather than paper piece the blocks.
  • Block E is a simple nine patch on a wonky point. I made the nine patch, aligned the squares with the template and trimmed. The first time I did this, I forgot to add a seam allowance around the outside edge so I made it twice for ease when adding the borders later on.

Now that I'm caught up with the Quilt Along (and actually a month ahead), I put it away again to focus on some other projects. I'll revisit it sometime in March. There is another great curved pieced block coming up and too many more that will likely be paper-pieced.

I am linking this post to The Salty Oat Quilt-a-Long for January and, because I actually sewed a little ahead, Salty Oat: modern sampler quilt along: block E link-up.


  1. Nice. I like your use of solids in your blocks.

    1. Thank you! I've been addicted to solids lately.


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