wonky  (ˈwɒŋkɪ) 
— adj  , -kier -kiest
1.shaky or unsteady
2.not in correct alignment; askew

Since our I Love Home Block of the Month has appliqued and embroidered houses, I thought I’d share a project that I did a few years ago- Wonky House Blocks! I like the extra scrappiness that the Log Cabin block adds to my little house. The Log Cabin Block can be just a little wonky, or super-wonky, whichever you prefer.

This tutorial will show you how to make the Wonky Log Cabin, and then how to turn it into a house block. Let’s get started!

This will make a 12 1/2″ block (12″ finished size.) You will need various scraps of fabric for the houses. You will also need fabric for the background- I used white but you can use any solid or tonal.

  • Scraps- strips should about 2-3″ wide. (You can cut the strips ahead of time, or just cut them as you go.)
  • White (for background)- 2 pieces 3 1/2 x 7 1/2″
  •                                          1 piece 7 x 15″
  • Roof fabric- 4 1/2 x 8 1/2″
  • “Starter” square for center of house- about 2 1/2″

UPDATE- If you want to make a Wonky House block which is 8″ finished size, that you can use with the I Love Home BOM blocks, use the measurements below in italics. The tutorial is the same.

  • *White (for background)- (2) 2 1/2″ x 5 1/4″
  •                                          (1) 5″ x 12″
  • *Dark fabric for roof- (1) 3 1/2″ x 7″
  • *Scraps and strips of assorted fabrics, about 1 1/2″ – 2″ wide
  • *”Starter” square for center of house- about 2″

Start with a square about 2 1/2″ big- it doesn’t even have to be a perfect square. Trim one side off on an angle. (The bigger the angle, the “wonkier” the block will be.)

Sew a strip of fabric to the angled side. Press and then trim excess fabric.
Turn block 90 degrees and sew another strip to the side.
Trim excess fabric, following the edge of the existing block.
I wanted the yellow strip to be a little narrower, and I wanted my block to be a little more wonky, so I trimmed it off at an angle.
Continue turning the block 90 degrees and sewing on strips, cutting edges at an angle as desired.
For a 12″ block, continue until unit is at least 7 x 8″ big. (For an 8″ block, continue until unit is at least 5 1/2 x 6″.) When you get to this point, don’t worry about the excess fabric because we will be trimming the block anyway. (At this point- you could just trim it to the desired size and use it as a Wonky Log Cabin block, or continue to make the House block.)
For a 12″ block, trim the unit to 6 1/2 x 7 1/2″. (For an 8″ block, trim the unit to 5 x 5 1/4″.)
Sew background fabric (3 1/2 x 7 1/2″) to either side of the block. (2 1/2 x 5 1/4″ background pieces for 8″ block.)
For the roof, start from the bottom corner and cut up to top, then make another cut from remaining bottom corner. (The angle doesn’t matter as long as your cuts go from the bottom corners to the top edge.)
Place 7 x 15″ piece of background fabric (5 x 12″ for 8″ block) right side up on table. Place roof triangle right side up on background fabric.
Cut the background fabric, using the roof as a guide.
Discard the background triangle under the roof fabric.
Place shape A right sides together with roof triangle and sew together.
Press. Sew shape B to other side of roof.
Press. Trim bottom edge so it is even with roof bottom.
Sew roof to block. Trim block to 12 1/2″. (Trim to 8 1/2″ for an 8″ block.)
Ta-da! A wonderfully wonky house! Go make a whole “village” of these!