Structured Collage Part 3 – Three layers

If two layers are good, three layers are even better, adding more complexity and interest to the design. Review Part 1 here , and Part 2 here.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERARemember the cute little block from Part 2? Measuring only 3 1/8″, it now has four small petal shapes from StarBuilder2 layered over the top.

Assembly sequence for 3 layer basic block

The concept for my Painted Blocks was born with the discovery that three layered squares, fused together, can do amazing things. The stacking technique continues to create additional variations that are spinning in my head, but let’s start with basic 3 layer block.

Select a 1.75″ square

Select a contrasting 2.5″ square

Layer together

Select set of four 1 3/4″ squares, which contrasts with the 2.5″ square.

Fuse top and middle layers to the bottom to create a basic block, measuring 5 1/4″.

Enlarge the block with triangles

At this point, you’ll need a square of base fabric. Since I never know how my designs will eventually be used, I generally use a 10 – 12″ square, which gives me the flexibility of a border, or expansion to a larger block. I can always cut excess away. If you have a specific project in mind, then cut the square to your specifications.

Make a second block. Fuse top and middle layers to the bottom, retaining paper on the bottom layer. Cut into four triangles.

Fuse top and middle layers to the bottom to create a basic block, measuring 5 1/4″.


Placing middle and/or top layers on point, changing colors and patterns, all produce different designs.

Middle layers on point

None of the layers are on point


Painted Blocks Two, 28″ x 28″


What to do with my ever growing collection of blocks? A wallhanging is a good way to display these beauties. Trim the base fabric away from the edge of each block, back with a fusible web, and arrange on a large square of background fabric. If you’re wondering about the center — look closely, and you’ll see the a medium block in the center, with a border of background fabric exposed. There are two matching medium blocks, each cut on one diagonal, which form a square. What looks like prairie points are actually four 2.5″ squares (from Quilt Block stamp set), cut into quarters, and fused along the edge.

I used a yardstick to make sure my blocks were evenly distributed, and fused them to the background fabric. With my quilt top complete, it’s an easy matter to quilt as desired, and add the binding.

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