An Exploration Quilt

2023 GloryQuilts Block of the Month quilt class online by Cathe Swanson

The GloryQuilts Block of the Month event starts in January, and it’s going to be so much fun!

Looking for a different kind of sampler quilt? The Exploration Quilt class is a fun and unique quilt with a variety of blocks and techniques to keep it interesting as well as beautiful. It’s an “exploration quilt,” which means you choose your own fabrics but won’t know exactly what the finished quilt will look like until you sew it all together.  I promise… it will be beautiful! Sign up HERE for a year of quilting, instruction, and fun.

You can do this!

The new Exploration Quilt is a delightful and unique quilt using five fabrics. It’s suitable for a quilter with rotary cutting and machine piecing experience. The monthly blocks vary in size and number. There are no separate setting blocks; some months, you will sew several smaller units or blocks instead of one large block. There is no foundation-piecing, but one of the blocks has a simple applique component that can be done on the sewing machine (or by hand if you prefer.) The finished quilt measures 91” X 91” — perfect for a queen-size bed!


Easy Fabric Selection

Click HERE to see some examples and helpful hints for choosing your fabric.

You will need five fabrics for this quilt. The Feature Fabric is used only for the borders, binding, and just a few 6″ – 9″ squares in the quilt. It can be a medium or dark large scale print as long as it contrasts well with the background and dark fabrics. (The print shouldn’t blend into the Background or Dark fabrics.) The Background Fabric should be a neutral fabric without a strong pattern but not a solid. The Dark Fabric is used for a border and extensively in the quilt top. The two Medium Fabrics are used throughout the quilt top.  The Dark, Medium A and Medium B fabrics should be single color, tone-on-tone prints or solids that contrast well with the background fabric. Avoid stripes and directional prints.

  • 2 3/8 yards Feature Fabric
  • 5 1/4 yards Background
  • 2 1/4 yards Dark Fabric
  • 1 1/4 yards Medium A Fabric
  • 1 1/8 yards Medium B Fabric


Here’s What You Will Need

  • Rotary cutting equipment
  • Sewing machine in good working order
  • Scissors, straight pins, seam ripper
  • Thread to match the background fabric
  • An iron and ironing board

Here’s How it Works

It’s a year-long quilt class! The total cost, for all the patterns, instruction, and the group membership, is just $30.  Every month,  you’ll receive a new pattern or set of patterns by email.  After you  make the block or assigned units,  you can share a picture of it in the private Facebook group! If you need help at any time, you can email me or ask questions in the group.  Step-by-step, throughout the year, we’ll make pieces of the quilt, and in December, you’ll receive the instructions for assembling the pieces into a  beautiful quilt top. It’s always so fun to see everyone’s finished work!

Sign up HERE for a year of quilt patterns, instructions and fun!

NOTE: You do not need to participate in the Facebook group to make the quilt, but it’s very fun!


My Own Fabric Choices

These are the fabrics I am using to make the Exploration Quilt this year. Please click HERE for helpful hints and more examples of fabric choices.

Fabric palette for the Exploration Quilt ~ 2023 GloryQuilts Block of the Month online quilt class

Sign up HERE for a year of quilting fun!


Want to see more options?

The Discovery Quilt is a great “confident beginner” class with an attractive setting. The Adventure Quilt is slightly more complex than the Discovery Quilt and has a particularly striking arrangement. Or join the 2024 Quiltalong and make FOUR beautiful projects.

GloryQuilts 2023 Block of the Month online quilt class ~ A Discovery Quilt by Cathe Swanson Timmons2023 Block of the Month ~ An Adventure Quilt class by Cathe Swanson Timmons of Glory Quilts

Ready for a fun challenge? Click HERE to sign up for the Exploration Quilt Block of the Month class now!