New video! 📹 Make an easy Churn Dash quilt block

Summer Dash quiltDid you know that the Churn Dash block dates back to the early nineteenth century? It’s made from elements—usually half-square-triangle units, rectangles, and a square—placed in a Nine Patch–style grid. The simplicity of the layout makes the Churn Dash block a favorite among many quilters (including Kim Diehl!).

There are LOTS of fun variations on this classic block—the design has been around so long, of course quilters would think of new ways to “churn” things up! But before we delve into those fun variations, let’s learn how to make a Churn Dash block in its most basic form. Here’s our latest video to show you how!


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Carriage Wheels Churn Dash blockAnother interesting fact about Churn Dash is its name, which is also a clue to its history. The term comes from the design’s resemblance to the staff or pole (referred to as the dash) used in a traditional wooden butter churn.

While Churn Dash is the most common name for this block, you might also hear it called Monkey Wrench, Double Wrench, Hole in the Barn Door, or Lincoln’s Platform, among other names. As is the case with many traditional blocks, different names for the same basic design tend to pop up over time, depending on the era or region.

In Block-Buster Quilts: I Love Churn Dashes, you’ll find 15 creative takes on Churn Dash—note how the block slides into traditional quilts and modern quilts with the same amount of charm:

Butterscotch and Blue quilt
Butterscotch and Blue by Jo Morton

Churn Dash Daze quilt
Churn Dash Daze by Amy Ellis

Carriage Wheels Churn Dash quilt
Carriage Wheels by Carol Hopkins

Toast and Cheddar Churn Dash quilt
Toast and Cheddar by Churn Dash mega-fan, Kim Diehl

So many churns, so many dashes—so little time! See 11 more quilts from I Love Churn Dashes here.

Do you know this classic block as Churn Dash, Monkey Wrench, Hole in the Barn Door, or something else? Tell us in the comments—we love them all!

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