2020 crazy quilt block 1 It all starts here!

2020 crazy quilt block 1 It all starts here!

2020 crazy quilt block 1 I said the other day that hopefully this week I will have my 2020 crazy quilt block 1 done. So here I am to share it. The hexagon when finished and bound has 4 inch sides and is 8 inches from point to point across. I thought today I would share with you the pattern and information about how this crazy quilt hexagon was made and embellished.

First up this is my starting point, here is the block unembellished. When I pieced the block I included the lace and ribbon.

2020 crazy quilt block 1 unembellished

Here I have the pattern. People are free to use it in their own personal project, just let people know where you got it via a link and credit.

2020 crazy quilt block 1 patternThe seam between piece 1 and 2 is a line that consists of 4 scallops. Using my templates I traced around the edge with a quilters pencils. Once the line was marked I worked the line using Threaded chain stitch (I have yet to have it in the stitch dictionary but it has just gone on my To do list) The chain stitch is worked in cotton perle #5 thread and the gold thread is a metallic knitting yarn which I found in a discount bargain bin. It is called Excel and was made in Taiwan. To be honest I cant imagine anyone knitting with the stuff but its great for using in any of the embroidery stitches that involve lacing and threading.

In the dips of the scallops I arranged a small flower motif made of French Knots. At their base I added a aqua bead that was secured by seed bead.

2020 crazy quilt block 1 seam 3The seam that runs down piece 5 is covered with a ribbon. Using my templates again I traced the same scallops in a line down the side of the ribbon. I used Stem Stitch to cover the line. Three bullion knots were arranged in fan worked in the dips of the scallops. The thread I used was hand dyed silk which I did myself. It is the same thickness as #8 perle cotton. I then added some straight stitches using a aqua metallic thread, topped off with a seed bead.

2020 crazy quilt block 1 seam 4

The lace that buts against the seam of piece 1 and piece 3 I secured to the block with tiny stitches before adding seed beads. Along the edge of this lace is I worked little arrangements of detached chain stitch and straight stitches. These are finished off with a small glass bicone bead at the base and seed beads at the top of straight stitches. The threads I used are #5 cotton perle for the detached stitches and aqua metallic thread and #8 cotton perle for the straight stitches.

The bow shaped lace motif was first secured to the block with very tiny stitches worked using regular sewing machine cotton and then I added the three seed beads.

2020 crazy quilt block 1 seam 1The next seam I want to talk about runs along the edge of piece 4. It has a foundation of herringbone stitch worked in #5  cotton perle. These foundation stitches are also threaded with the same metallic knitting yarn I used on the Threaded Chain stitch (I can see I have another variety I need to add to my stitch dictionary. The to-do list is growing!)

Spaced between the herringbone stitches using a #5 cotton perle that was hand dyed, I worked detached chain wrapped bullion knots.(Oops there is another variety to add to my stitch dictionary)  These I arranged in a fan and stitched a little gold novelty bead at the base of each fan.

2020 crazy quilt block 1 seam 2One of my ideas for this quilt is to have a garden type them where there are little things to discover on each block. In the tradition of Victorian crazy quilts I added a spider – just peeking from behind a button. He is watching the butterfly. Spiders mean good luck so I wanted to start this project on a good footing. The Spiders web is made of a couched metalic gold thread. I found the thread in estate sale and I dont know what it is but its good to stitch with which is rare for metallic threads!

The idea behind a 2020 crazy quilt challenge is make a crazy quilt using 2020 different items by the end of the year 2020. So what am I counting on this block?

Count for 2020 crazy quilt block 1

  • Fabric 5
  • Ribbon and lace 2
  • Charms 2
  • Buttons 5
  • Novelty beads 4
  • Lace bow motif  1
  • Specialty threads 3 (gold metallic for spider web, metallic aqua, metallic knitting yarn)
  • Stitches 8 (French Knot, Stem Stitch, Threaded Chain stitch, Threaded Herringbone, Detached Chain, Straight stitch, Couching, Wrapped Bullion Knots, )

Total on 2020 crazy quilt block 1 is 30

CORRECTIONS and EDITS! This post was edited as I have changed the total because I forgot count the lace bow.  Also I had not counted specialty threads and stitches confused people so I revised the total.

I am tracking what I do in studio journal so hopefully I wont duplicate. Next post if people are interested I will share the page spread too.

Do you want to join the 2020 Crazy Quilt challenge?

The aim is make a crazy quilt using 2020 different items by the end of the year 2020. You will find the guidelines and list of resources here 

Admins on the big Facebook groups Crazy Quilt Divas and Crazy Quilt International  are happy to see people share there work there. So follow the links and join the groups if you are Facebook person.  For those who have blogs you can leave your web address in the comments – each week as you progress. Instagram people can use #2020crazyquilt to share progress photos.


holding my book in front of quiltHave you seen my book?

My book The Visual Guide to Crazy Quilting Design: Simple Stitches, Stunning Results shares practical methods about how to design and make a crazy quilt. I teach how to balance colour, texture and pattern, to direct the viewer’s eye around a crazy quilted project. I show you how to build decorative seam treatments in interesting and creative ways using a handful of stitches. My book is profusely illustrated as my aim is to be both practical and inspiring.


Stitchers Templatesusing my stitchers Templates set 2

As someone who loves crazy quilting and embroidery, I designed these templates with other stitchers in mind. With my templates, you can create hundreds of different patterns to apply to your stitching and crazy quilting projects. They are easy to use, totally clear so you can position them easily. They are compact in your sewing box.

For more information, see what they look like, find out about the free ebook of patterns visit the information pages in my shop where you can also purchase them.


  1. Can’t you count that metallic knitting yarn as a specialty thread, too? And your rules say you can count unique stitch combinations. I don’t see that you did that or the spider web motif. I’m thinking of joining, but I hope your spread sheet, when you post that, will help me clarify what is countable. =)

    1. Hi Susan – yes I could have counted the yarn and stitches – but I didn’t – people can count what they want. For my project I wasn’t going to count or bother tracking everything just most things but it is confusing people so I will count everything from the next block. So yes you can count the yarn the stitches the lot. Most of all have fun that is the main thing

  2. Just finished reading your book. What a fantastic resource and by far the best book I’ve purchased (and I own a lot of books)! I especially enjoy the section devoted to design as well as the great pictures. It’s already given me a lot of ideas I plan on incorporating into my 2020 quilt.

    Sue N, Madison, WI
  3. Hi Sharon,
    Beautiful block, love the Aqua in this block. I’ve got your book to give inspiration. Thanks so much for putting this book together. It has lots of very useful information. Have a great day!

    1. Thanks Elizabeth – that is why I like the hexies so much if you are beginner you can do as many as you like and stop when you have had enough and simple top stitch them together – bingo done!

  4. Hi sharon, was just wondering if you made your hexie a bit bigger than finished size and then cut it back to size when you finished embellishing the block. Looking forward to getting started.

    1. Andrea I left a seam allowance and that was is – I use a hoop so dont have trouble with shrinkage but if you do I always advise people to leave a little extra so they can trim to size

  5. Sharon, this is so beautiful! I’m not a quilter, but I do love fabric and trying a quilt for the first time would allow me to take a snip of all the pretty fabrics and embellishments I love to see when at our local hobby stores, so that’s on my bucket list. 2016’s project was learning Spanish; 2017’s was embroidery (only took me eleven hundred times to get kiko’s right). Quilting – at least one – will be next. Yours is such great inspiration!

  6. Love it Sharon. I have only done 1 quilt as you go and it didn’t quite turn out like I wanted for the backing, but the front looked great. This will give me a chance to hone my skills on a much smaller scale.
    I just ordered your book.
    Templates next payday hopefully.
    Thank you for guidance and generosity.

    Faith in Texas
  7. Wow the block is beautiful, and the information and description of stitches and embellishments is invaluable. I did save the block template and may attempt this project. I have a few other hand embroidery projects to complete but as a budding Crazy Quilter I would love to at least try for the 2020 quilt.

    1. Deborah I know 2020 sounds daunting but it is not – read along for a while and you will see the count start to build -it really is a one step at a time project and the journey is the important thing

  8. You are really awesome! Just opened my email and and my juices are simply over flowing! When I get back from an appointment I’m going to sit right down and plan my first bound hexie. I love doing them this way. You are the best! Your sharing is better than food and a lot less calories. Happy needle threading Patty j.

    Patty j.
  9. Hi, I was in the middle of dying some lace when the postie found me out the back with a parcel for me. Your book no less. It’s beautiful. I then had to clean up so I could look at it.
    Having dyed the same lace different colours would that be one count for each colour.
    With your fabric did you get it all out at once and sort it, or did you leave some to sort later. I figure I will need over 700 different fabrics and I’m running out of room to view the ones I do have out.
    Even my dh is interested in my progress and inquiries regularly.

  10. This is beautiful Sharon and really inspiring. I have already sewn my first block which is 6in square and have been contemplating the embellishments so thank you for more ideas.

    Marion Alderson
  11. Just received your new book and I love it! 2 more boxes to unpack and I will have all my creative supplies available to me after moving into my new apartment on April 1st.

    I’m not sure I will be doing this challenge, but if I do, I have the materials to do so. I have my own stash, some of my deceased huge collection, and my sis is downsizing so I also have some of hers.

    What I do know is your book is going to be one of my favorite Crazy Quilting resources in the future!

    Frannie Q
  12. I got my book in the mail from Amazon today! It is beautiful Sharon. The illustrations are so clear and colorful. I look forward to using it. I am not sure if I will do the 2020 quilt yet. I am still working on my TAST sampler. I started at stitch 44 with the current session.

    Maureen T.

  13. Sharon, Thank you for all the information you give us. I am loving reading your blog and trying to remember to take some of the ideas and add them to my crazy quilt blocks. I am new to Crazy Quilts and love learning about how to do them. You are an incredible help to this newby.

    Betty Macpherson-Veitch
  14. I am following along, but not doing this project. I think I am going to do a Christmas themed project I have in mind with the same end date as a goal. I may work towards a 2020 number of items, seams or pieces, but won’t be going the charm route. I will see. I love your book and have both sets of templates. I hope you will offer your online classes again in the future. I didn’t discover you until your last class had closed.

    Sarah Aldrich
    1. HI Sarah – I am getting quite a few people asking so I am thinking about it – but I would have to offer a new course altogether so its heaps of work to do – I sort of shiver at that idea

  15. Hi Sharon its really lovely and you make it look so easy, I do have many accessories and am going to give it a go and see how far I get with my supplies before I have to duplicate something. Thank you so much for all the information and advice I have never attempted anything like it before so I am really excited.

  16. Fabulous hexagon, Sharon. I’ve saved the template and will follow all you post but decided to be sensible and refrain from joining in, until I’ve completed current projects.
    I’m hoping to find your new book waiting at the post office this week.

  17. On your hexagon – you bound the outside edges. I have always left the edges raw until the blocks were joined. With bound edges, how do you go about joining the blocks together ? I am still new and learning with crazy quilting – but love it !!!

    Bonnie Freund
  18. Sharon,
    Thank you so much for your generosity. Your block is beautiful. I will look forward to seeing your next page spread.
    I am greatly enjoying your new book. Such an abundance of knowledge you are imparting. The eye candy is mind boggling……..

    Mae Vernon
  19. So, you didn’t count the little bow Applique, any of the seams, threads, or seed beads? Or, did I miss something in translation? Just confused. I’m following all of this but am not joining in. Fun project.

    Maureen Greeson
  20. This block makes me want to start stitching. I am very new to CQ but hope to get into it more. Received your lovely book & the first set of templates & am fired up ready to play

    Valerie Lee
  21. Beautiful block, but I have a question from a newbie. Are you not going to count your different combinations of stitches or your lace motif (the bow)? I guess I am just concerned because I don’t know how I’m going to get to 2020 if I don’t count everything I can.

    Carolyn Allen
    1. Hi Carolyn – I will from the next block I think as it is confusing people – so will count those too. Check out the guidelines as to what is countable- it is doable

  22. I like this hexagon! I’ve seen some other hexagons on Facebook that I like.
    Did you cheat yourself by one? Looks like there should be 3 in the lace and ribbon count. I’ve been looking at this block on Facebook, counting embellishments as part of deciding how many blocks I’ll need to do.
    Still thinking about clamshells – no decisions yet.

    Marci Hainkel
  23. Your first block is beautiful! I would like to see your journal pages for the 2020 Challenge.
    I hope to join you with my first completed block by the end of the month.

    Denise Waterfield
    1. Thank you about the journal page spread. Will you use a fabric or a stitch again elsewhere but not count it? I am planning on doing the 2020 challenge, just hoping I can keep up. Thanks for all you do.


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