Mom took on the move with such energy, it was inspiring. I needed to do something to mark this occasion, so I did what I usually do: I made a quilt.
We helped Mom with everything, my brother & sister-in-law, my sister, my husband and I, including buying new furniture. My sister-in-law and I spent a full day at furniture stores looking through thousands of fabrics and created fabric groups for Mom to review. That way, she wouldn't be exhausted from all the running around and could enjoy choosing the look of her new living room. And if she didn't see anything she liked, we would go back and look for more.
I laid out the fabric groupings on the carpet, and Mom had the fun of 'designing' her living room furniture by picking and choosing. And did she had fun! Rearranging groups... moving fabrics around to see them in & out of the light... we tried every combination enjoying it and coffee and conversation. Mom chose a beautiful combination of blues and browns (Fig 1). We ordered the furniture and 8 weeks later it arrived. And in the mean time, I got busy on her quilt.
I browsed my quilting magazine collection and looked around online for ideas. I saw several Modern designs that started with a classic block and cut it into pieces. Most were limited in fabric number or depended on a wider value range than my fabrics. And looked very busy. This quilt would be busy enough using all those fabrics and I wanted a cleaner look. I started sketching some ideas and realized I needed to add more fabrics to make those ideas work. But not if I simplified.
I went back to my original idea of a single patch block and sketched some more. I decided on a 9-patch block with cuts through each outside patch. I would still have to add fabric because I didn't have enough of any single fabric to complete this idea.
Then it hit me: a single cut using a single fabric would give me the clean look I wanted. Like sashing on the inside of the patch! That was it--so I sat down with a notebook and calculated all the yardage, sizes and number of patches I would need.