Slice-shuffle-slide with a Stack the Deck quilt pattern (+ sale!)

Along the quiltmaking road, many of us encounter “stack-and-whack” or “Stack the Deck” quilts—but have you tried making one? It’s a fun, liberating way to experience the unexpected. There are a lot of different ways to stack squares, cut them apart, and sew them back together.

Karla Alexander introduced her stack-slice-shuffle-and-sew technique in Stack the Deck in 2002, which she devised as a way to create Crazy quilt blocks. The concept is fairly simple: cut squares to a given size and stack them, slice them as instructed, and then shuffle the pieces before sewing them back together.

Scrappy Crazy Quilt Sampler
From Stack the Deck Revisited: “Scrappy Crazy Quilt Sampler”

But that was only the beginning. Over the course of six more Stack the Deck books, Karla expanded on the technique, introducing new ways to play with color and different ways to cut the stacks.

In her most recent book, Stack, Shuffle, and Slide, Karla revealed the secret to controlling color placement (hint: it’s all in the slide). A Stack the Deck quilt pattern is no longer limited by random fabric placement. Now you are in control.

Let’s look at some of the innovations Karla has introduced in her books.

Stack a New DeckIn Stack a New Deck, Karla looked beyond Crazy quilt blocks and applied the technique to other traditional blocks, such as Log Cabin. She also started to play with curved piecing.
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Quilts from Stack a New Deck
“Garden Path” and “Aunt Bessie’s Kaleidoscope” from Stack a New Deck

See all the projects in Stack a New Deck >

Stack the Deck RevisitedThe plan for Stack the Deck Revisited was to use new fabrics to remake the quilts from the first book, which was in demand but no longer in print. Karla tried to stick with the plan, but she soon found herself having so much fun and getting so caught up in the possibilities that she couldn’t help introducing a few new ideas and variations. The result is a collection that’s even more exciting and innovative!
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From Stack the Deck Revisited
“Roll of the Dice” and “Figs and Ginger” from
Stack the Deck Revisited

See all the projects in Stack the Deck Revisited >

Dynamic Quilts with Easy CurvesOnce she saw how much fun her students were having with curves, Karla couldn’t wait to design a book’s worth of projects for them. Whether cut freeform or with a special ruler, curves add energy and excitement to quilts.
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From Dynamic Quilts with Easy Curves
“Bounce” and “Split Seconds” from
Dynamic Quilts with Easy Curves

See all the projects in Dynamic Quilts with Easy Curves >

Stack, Shuffle, and SlideIn her latest book, Karla unlocked the key to controlling color placement. In a lightbulb moment, she discovered that by introducing one more step—the slide—she could keep certain colors where she wanted them within blocks. The results are amazing!
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From Stack, Shuffle, and Slide
“Loosely Woven” and “Paint Chips” from
Stack, Shuffle, and Slide

See all the projects in Stack, Shuffle, and Slide >

What will she come up with next? Only Karla knows that, but we’re sure it will lead to exciting quilts!

Intrigued? Ready to jump in and give it a try? Pick up a copy of one of the books above.

What new piecing technique have you tried recently? Tell us about it in the comments.

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