Improv Strip Block – A Tutorial

Improv Strips Block Tutorial

This morning I was looking around at the unfinished projects in my sewing room, trying to figure out what to work on next. Then my eyes settled on the Kaffe Fassett stripes I bought at the quilt show in Cincinnati and I thought, why not start something new? 🙂 They are really so beautiful, it’s amazing I haven’t cut into them until now.

Kaffe Stripes

I thought I would share my process for making the above block. It is improvisational and hopefully you will find it quite simple to make. I am using fat quarters for this project, but really this would work using strips of scraps as well. Just make sure your scrap strips are at least 12.5″ long.

Step 1

Step 1. Select your fabric and cut it into strips of random widths. I cut 2″ to 3.5″ stripes.

Step 2

Step 2. Randomly sew 2 to 3 strips together lengthwise. The resulting rectangles should be at least 5″ wide.

Step 3

Step 3. Cut a 3.5″ x 3.5″ square for the center of your block. Select 4 strips from Step 2. From these strips, cut 2 pieces 3.5″ x 5″ and 2 pieces 5″ x 12.5″.

Step 4

Step 4. Sew the 3.5″ x 5″ rectangles to the top and bottom of the center square.

Step 5. Sew the 5″ x 12.5″ rectangles to the left and right of the block.

Improv Strips Block


    • 3


      Yes! The strips go together so fast and make enough for several blocks, I think a quilt top will come together fairly quickly this week. 🙂

  1. 10

    Cyrilla Francis says

    Awesome. Finally, a tutorial on how to make these beautiful blocks. Thank you, Faith from Chicago 🙂

  2. 11


    I am just looking at your blog for the first time. Really nice! Thanks for the gift of your ideas. I like this block so much! I have some leftover chunks of borders that were pieced. I can see using this method to build blocks out of the leftovers and then using these to make unique tote bags or purses.

  3. 13

    Cindy Pilkington says

    I love the Kaffe materials too! I’ve just started quilting and just discovered your blog. Do you have a picture of the finished quilt using the Kaffe stripes? Please email me a link if you do!

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