Friday, February 12, 2010

More on the Swirl Design

I've learned lots more about the swirl pattern I showed in my February 8th posting. Denniele remembered an old example from the Indiana Quilt Research Project Book,  Quilts of Indiana, in which they showed a picture of the one above, possibly made in Connecticut about 1890. "This blue and cream swirl pattern rates as the most unusual pattern among the over 6,400 quilts registered by the IQRP."

The curved swirl looks a lot like the Indiana Puzzle quilt on the cover of the book.

A few people wrote to say they'd made one, either obtaining the pattern in a class or using templates for the design sold by the Ardco template company.

Sally Ickes made the quilt below in a class. She used Japanese-inspired fabrics.

I found the version below at Jane's Fabric Patch where they teach a class.


And see another one made from the Ardco templates by clicking here:

See more about the templates here:


  1. Bobbi writes to say the pattern was in the April 2004 issue of Quilters Newsletter as "French Twist."

  2. Just wanted you to know that I did a quilt like that called Whirly Twirly Round and Round several years ago. I just posted an piece on my blog Just Quilts. http://justquilts-funoldhag.blogspot.com Such a cool pattern and although not easy, it isn't as bad as it looks. And I thank you for following me on Just Quilts - I thought it would make a nice record of the ones I have made. Enjoy your blog very much! Carol

  3. Not difficult? Are you sure? ;) Wondering if I could tackle it. While the mutli-print one is pretty - to my eye, the 2 colors quilts just dance across the screen.
    Are you sure it is easier than it looks?
    JUlie in TN

  4. It definitely changes perspective and movement, by changing the colors around. It reminds me of waves, really nice design.


  5. Well, the pattern 'looks' impossible but clearly a number of people have made it, so I guess it is easier than it looks! ;-)
    I'll stick to the Indiana Puzzle pattern.

  6. I've made the French Twist version and it isn't difficult....it's applique! Piecing would be another story.

  7. I just found a book at a Guild yard sale called All Quilt Blocks Are Not Square by Debra Wagner, 1995. And in it was this swirl quilt. She called it Candy Swirl.

  8. I have seen this referred to as a monkey wrench pattern, but I don't know if that is correct. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Your blog and every single one of the quilts! You have EXCELLENT taste. ~Page

  9. Love it, can see where applique would be the way to go. Can't imagine trying to machine piece it!
    Nancy/NC... (bookmarking your blog, love it, thanks!)

  10. Linda Franz of Inklingo.com has developed a pattern for this block for easy peasy stitching. You run your fabric thru the printer and all matching points, etc are printed for you. Wonderfully precise.......Sandi

  11. My sister and I have been looking for this pattern for years. We have great-grandma's quilt and have never seen a pattern for it. To find a picture of the quilt and a link to the template all at the same time is beyond wonderful.