FALL2024 Nine.Patch.Play.

Nine. Patch. Play.

Taught by:

Karen Stevens


Thursday, September 5th

Friday, September 6th

Experience level: All levels

Oh the humble nine patch!  The simplest of quilt blocks, the nine patch was typically the first to be taught to young girls for its ease of entry into hand stitching. These quilts were popular in the Civil War as fabric was scarce and only small remnants of fabric were needed, often from discarded clothing or uniforms. Today, this simple tradition—the nine-patch quilt—can launch a whole creative process when you play with the color and contrast of textiles, especially naturally dyed fabrics. Add in the practice of hand-stitching and you have a one-of-a-kind piece of art.

In this workshop that is grounded in the sweet and gentle pace of hand-stitching, I will walk you through the steps for creating your own nine-patch bit of pretty. We will play around with composition, size and color. Each patch can be used on its own, perhaps as a patch on a favorite pair of jeans, or batting added and quilted as a coaster. You may instead choose to start a collection of them (they are super addicting to make) and work toward a larger pieced project, a pillow, wall hanging or quilt.

I love grouping them and pinning to my studio wall for inspiration. There is no end to what you can create.

This class is open to all levels. Throughout the class, I will share my best-loved practices and techniques including a demo of how to edge the quilt when you are done. We will be covering basic hand stitching techniques: back stitch, running stitch, and hem stitch (if you choose to add a binding)

In the kit is a pack of hand-dyed fabrics from my studio, but you are encouraged to bring your own favorite pieces as well to create a color and texture combo that makes your heart sing.

Kit fee: 25 (optional)


This exercise is all about PLAY, rather than a finished project, so I encourage digging around in your remnants pile and finding fabrics that you love. The cut squares will be small (1.5 – 2”) so you don’t need a lot of material. I suggest a few different darker value solid or patterned pieces, and then a lighter value that will act as your contrast. Stripes are also fun to play with a directional patch. Of course you are welcome to buy a few quarter yards of fabrics (linen or cotton). A kit will also be available (optional)

Kit fee: $25 for a set of my naturally dyed linen and cotton squares, and a neutral piece of vintage cotton.

Students need to bring with them:

  • Sewing needle and thread (cotton thread suggested)
  • thimble
  • Fabric scissors
  • Plastic quilting ruler (6 x 6 is fine)
  • Erasable marker (Frixion pens work great)
  • Small thread snips
  • Safety pins, if you would like to try quilting your piece