Thursday, September 22, 2016

Anvil for my Nephew

I've been working on gift quilts for my youngest nephew and nieces. The quilts are now in their hands, so I can now share my work without spoiling the surprise. 

My nephew enjoys metalworking on his forge. When I decided to make him a quilt, the traditional Anvil block seemed appropriate.

I wanted to make a bold, geometric quilt--not a fussy one. For this reason, I chose to go with only two fabrics on the top--a struggle for a scrappy quilter like me!

The basic units are 3.5" and 6.5"--this creates a 12.5" block.

The block is easy to assemble:

Sew a 3.5" HST to a 3.5" solid light square

Sew a 3.5" HST to a dark solid square

Sew the two units together. You will need 2 of these four-patch units per block.

Sew the unit to a 6.5" HST to form a half-block.

Join the half-blocks to make a complete Anvil block.

In this quilt, I used 36 blocks to create a square quilt approximately 74" x 74" when finished and bound. Even numbers of blocks for each row and column made the overall pattern seem more complete to me. Experiment with your blocks to determine if you wish to make it differently.

Other layouts are possible with this block:
This layout turns all the scrappy anvils in one direction and adds sashing between the blocks. (Click the photo to find the original site of the image.)
Again, here the anvils all run in one direction this time without sashing between the blocks. (Click the photo to find the original site of the image.)

I chose the layout I did because I like the secondary pattern that is created by the light-colored fabric.

I backed this quilt with a fabric featuring American flags.

The binding is the same blue fabric as I used on the front.

My nephew is interested in the Navy, so I thought of using backing fabric printed with semaphore flags. The problem is, I don't read semaphore, so I wouldn't know what those flags were saying.I didn't want to give him a quilt where the flags spelled out "You are a scurvy rat" or "Your granny sucks eggs"!  :)

Thanks for visiting and happy sewing.

I'm linking to Myra's Busy Hands Quilts Finished or Not Friday and Fiber Tuesday 79 at The Quilting Room with Mel.


  1. This is a stunning quilt. I've never made a quilt with only two fabrics but I love seeing them.
    --Nancy. (ndmessier @,

  2. I've only made 2 2-color quilts, a blue & white Dear Jane and a red & white embroidered wall hanging. Two color quilts are so beautiful. Some people think it is boring to only work with 2 colors, but I don't agree. Your quilt is lovely. Blessings, Gretchen

    1. Thank you, Gretchen. I usually use many more, but this one needed to be less busy.

  3. Awesome quilt, I like the blue-metal combination, it looks really good!

  4. Very nice, the blue and white is perfect and I love your layout!

  5. I love your blocks and your idea! Two color quilts looks so sharp and clean, but I can see how it can be a definite challenge. Your quilt is lovely and I'm pinning it to my Quilting Tutorials and Ideas board! Thank you for sharing!

  6. What a lovely quilt, and such a nice gift for your nephew.
    Sylvia at Treadlestitches

  7. Replies
    1. Thank you so much, Jocelyn. Thanks, too, for visiting my blog.

  8. The quilt is beautiful or should I say "Handsome" :) Your nephew was impressed by the thought that went into the pattern and the flags on the back. Thankfully it is on his bed and not out in the "Blacksmith" shop on display! Great job!

    1. I'm glad he likes it--when I saw the Anvil block, I knew it was for him. :)


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Happy Quilting,
The Eclectic Abuela