Studio, What's on the Design Wall

What’s on the Design Wall: Scrappy Improvisational Medallion

This post is actually a continuation of my ongoing series What’s on the Design Wall, featuring my latest project up on either the small design wall in my studio or the large design wall my hallway.

Got Medallion?

Obviously I have been influenced by my fellow blogger buddy Melanie at Catbird Studio (see post The Six-Pointed Star and per page Medallion Lessons) but I have a burning need to make a Medallion Quilt.

I am also influenced by this page I tore from a Keepsake Quilting catalog for a medallion style Block of the Month (BOM) sampler. The only problem is that monthly participation in this BOM is $42.99 plus shipping! As lovely as this quilt is that would not be in my budget, so I just added the image to my magnet inspiration board on my studio closet door:


Rummaging Through the “Challenge Bags”

For the 4th of July, we were “bunkered” in our house with loud movies or music playing in the background, all the windows shut and the air conditioner (actually we have 2 evaporative or “swamp” coolers) to try to keep our extremely fireworks terrified dogs calm. Each year we plan to get from the vet some anti-anxiety medications for them but we forget, so instead we distract them with other sounds. This works most of 4th while neighborhood kids are playing with their fireworks. It only stops working in the evening when there is a VERY LOUD fireworks display at local attraction near our house.

Since I was “bunkering” on the 4th, I decided to spend some time in my studio looking through my collection of “Challenge Bags” (see post Basket of Challenges). Inside one of the bags I found an old felt and tweed Schoolhouse block pillow top I had purchased 14 years ago for $1 in a clearance sale at the back of a quilt shop. Tucked in with the Schoolhouse block were several strips of “Pyramid” borders that another quilter gave me.

With Medallion Quilts floating around in the back of my mind, I started playing with the pieces on the design wall:


I had just enough of the Pyramid pieced strips to border the Schoolhouse block twice on each side and ended up with the beginning of a scrappy improvisational medallion quilt!


My very first Medallion Quilt in progress. I plan to make it using only fabric scraps and recycled pieced items from my challenge bags. I am going to read through Melanie at Catbird Studio’s lessons on for making Medallion quilts as inspiration and then let myself get all improvisational once I understand any helpful concepts.

What Comes Next?

I pulled from my “Basket of Challenges” (my stash of challenge bags) a bag of scrap squares and a bag of scrap triangles.  I am going to just keep this piece up on my design wall and slowly add to it as I am inspired.


I had fun “bunkering” on the 4th!

22 thoughts on “What’s on the Design Wall: Scrappy Improvisational Medallion”

  1. Whoever made those perfect pyramid points has brought me near tears! Would that I could get so good that such as these would be my scraps 🙂 And the yellow hand-stitching — lovely. T: your improv quilts are always fun to watch as they unfold. Looks like you’ve got another great start!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you and I agree – when I took those scraps from my friend (who I think got them from someone else) – I was like “wow, not sure what I am going to do with those, but wow!” Melanie at Catbird Studio in her page on her blog on Medallion quilts discussed using mindfulness to develop your medallion quilt. I am just keeping it up on the design wall for now and waiting for it tell me what it wants next 🙂


  2. I love it when you show your design wall and WIP. Sami The Wonder Dog had not problem at all with the fireworks. I think she is so used to my neighbor shooting off his gun she thinks it is just another day. Before you think I live in the boonies….I live in the city limits of a city that has more restrictions than it does residents (80k +) Love the inspiration I get from your blogs.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow Sami is awesome! I am envious of your Wonder Dog! I never had a dog who was not terrified of fireworks so it would be nice someday to have one who was not freaking out! Thanks for your comments and maybe for our future dogs my husband Terry should take them to the range with him to get them used to loud sounds – ha!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Looks like a great beginning to a fun project. Medallion quilts are a special kind of fun. I haven’t done any since a round robing a long time ago. Time for another, methinks.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. You are a natural at the medallion quilt thing!

    I’m sorry your pets struggle on July 4. When our dog was older and developed anxiety, she was prescribed human Xanax. When she had to travel by plane in younger years we gave her a doggy dose of benedryl. Too bad they don’t make doggy earplugs.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much and we’ll see what happens in the next round on the medallion!
      Thanks for sharing your dog’s story and I think it would be okay once a year to give them some meds to get them through the 4th – they are super frightened.


  5. Looks like you are off to a great start! We avoid all things unnecessarily loud with Sadie too. We usually hide in our lower level with the tv on. She does have anti anxiety meds that we use when it thunder storms.

    Liked by 1 person

Comments are closed.