Crossed Canoe Child’s Play – An Island Batik Ambassador Project

In July, Island Batik Ambassadors received a new box. I was so excited as I received two thing I knew would work perfectly together – the Accquilt BOB (block on board) die* for the Crossed Canoes block and the fabric collection Sand Bar from Island Batik This month’s theme is child’s play, and I will tell you a little about how this quilt developed. Disclaimer: I received the fabric, thread, cutting dies and batting from Island Batik and their industry partners through this program.]

Originally, I was thinking a really playful quilt – something a little different from my recent traditional with a modern twist approach. I already knew this would be fun to piece as I had done some test blocks (here).

Unfortunately, this fabric collection was not leaning to the bright, childlike whimsical quilt I was initially thinking about. So, as I often do, I used Electric Quilt 8 and put the fabric collection in and began to come up with the idea of using some of the images that were featured in the fabric in alternate blocks.

Dodge the Fog

The crossed canoe block looks oh so modern, but it is an old block. It dates as far back as the late 1800’s. It was published in the Ladies Art Company as pattern number 89. Ruby McKim also published it in the Detroit Free Press in 1929 and in her book in 1931. [Quilt Index]. Much of this information can be found on the Loudon Country Barn Quilt Trail. There are other names for this block:Crossed Canoes, Santa Fe Quilt, Indian Canoes, The Dragon Fly, Twinkling Star and Tippecanoe.

I am not sure why the canoes cross, but I know what I was going to do. There would be a story with island children exploring in the bay explaining the lovely friends that grace this quilt as well as the story that inspired the quilt. Welcome to “Dodge the Fog” and the story of its origin.

The day began like others at this time of year. The mists of the morning fog are still hanging around the outcroppings of rocks along the Maine coast. P, B & J decide to take the canoes out for a little bit of dodge the fog and see what is lurking in the mists.

Fort Gorges, Casco Bay Maine

There is an old civil war fort nearby, with many rocks and one must be careful, but their friends kept reporting interesting things near the fort. They couldn’t resist so they paddled their way to the outcropping of rocks and the fort.

The turtles were happily swimming by but they knew they heard rumors of more interesting things in the water.

An octopus floated in and about the seaweed, but there was something else. It is odd, but near the sea is the ever-present mystery of what lurks in or near the water… extra large fish, sunken ships, widowed ghosts and strange creatures. These children are of the 21st century and assume all the fantastic stories are just that.

Thump! Something bumped one canoe. Then THUMP! again another canoe was bumped. Was it the rocks? No, there was something was playfully knocking and dodging between their canoes, what could it be? Well, the answer is in this quilt! It was their lucky day of play in the fog and low and behold, a group of mermaids also decided this would be the perfect time to play. So…

they were so distracted by the exciting things about them that they started paddling erratically and before you knew it….their canoes crossed. A little back paddling and forward paddling and a little shove from some of their new friends, would help them get going in the right direction. Their mother created this quilt to commemorate the fantastic day, and that is how the block came to be named Crossed Canoes.

Whoops…I miss pieced that one.

Now, back to some of the quilting details. Piecing I always use a #50wt Aurifil, and this time I used an old favorite, #2600 Dove. The background for the alternate appliqué squares is an Island Batik called Whip Cream and the dotted backing is called EggWhite.

Tabitha, my HandiQuilter Sweet Sixteen was used to for quilting and did not fail. It is so much fun quilting now that I can move the machine rather than the quilt. Waves or curves were needed and I borrowed a pantograph that worked quite well – a 10″ design called Spiral Rings.

Auril 40 wt #2402 Light Laurel Green top thread

I used a Hobbs Tuscany Batting that is a wool and cotton blend and really like the way it quilted. I will definitely be using more of this. I will note the size before I wash and follow their instructions…a report on that will follow.

50 wt #1147 Light Leaf Green

Dodge the Fog:  45″ x 60″
Original Design
Accuquilt Crossed Canoe Die
Aurifil threads, 50wt #1147 & #2600; 40wt #2402
Handiquilter Simply Sixteen
Pantograph:  Spiral Rings
Hobbs Tuscany Batting, Cotton Wool Blend

Coming Upon the Blog:
Color Block of the Month
Barn Quilt BOM #2
Tutorial on Converting Picture to Mosaic in EQ8

Linking Up:
What I Made Monday
Colour & Inspiration Tuesday
Wednesday Wait Loss
Put Your Foot Down
September UFO WIP Challenge
2019 FAL Quarter 3 Finishes

Disclaimer: *Links with asterisk indicate an affiliate link and as an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Your price is not any different, but a small percentage of the sale will go to supporting my blog.


  1. September 23, 2019 / 2:58 AM

    Love your use of the motifs in the fabrics, integrating them with the BOB die for a whole story! Great idea. 🙂

    • September 23, 2019 / 9:48 AM

      Thanks, Dione. It was fun to come up with a way to make it all work and I really love the way it turned out.

  2. Brenda @ Songbird Designs
    September 23, 2019 / 9:14 AM

    Love the story Kathleen! Very cute quilt! AccuQuilt certainly makes our lives easier. I haven’t tried this die but I really like the way it turned out! Great job!

    • September 23, 2019 / 9:46 AM

      It is a really fun die and I do see more crossed canoes in my future!

  3. September 23, 2019 / 10:46 AM

    Hi Kathleen! I love the whole backstory on the crossed canoes and your quilt sure turned out great. I love the quilting pattern you chose as well – it gives the idea of waves and movement to the piece. What a nice finish! ~smile~ Roseanne

    • kathleenquilts
      September 24, 2019 / 3:23 PM

      Thanks, Roseanne. It was fun and I enjoyed coming up with the story. I loved making the blocks so feel a few more will be in my future. And yes, waves was what I was going for so I am glad you thought it worked!

  4. Joan
    September 23, 2019 / 11:54 AM

    Love love love how you used the wonderful designs in the batiks as appliques. Fun way to learn about the block too.
    What a fun post!

    • kathleenquilts
      September 24, 2019 / 3:23 PM

      I am so glad you enjoyed it! I always like having a little history in the blog.

  5. September 23, 2019 / 1:27 PM

    Beautiful quilt. I like the way you used the designs in the fabric for your alternate blocks. And the story was wonderful and whimsical. Bravo!

    • kathleenquilts
      September 24, 2019 / 3:26 PM

      It is fun to be able to use the designs in different ways – there wasn’t enough for alternate blocks so I found a way to make it all work. Have not done a whole lot of story writing lately so it was fun to try.

  6. September 23, 2019 / 8:30 PM

    What a fabulous quilt Kathleen! Putting in the appliqués really brought it to that whimsical level and I love the story to go with it. Thanks for including the history of the block!

    • kathleenquilts
      September 24, 2019 / 3:27 PM

      The story and whimsy was needed to pull it all together. I love having some history of blocks in the blog when I can!

  7. thedarlingdogwood
    September 23, 2019 / 9:28 PM

    Wow, this is fabulous! I love the story and that you used the playful motifs in the fabric as both accents and part of your story. Fun!

    • kathleenquilts
      September 24, 2019 / 3:30 PM

      It was fun to use the fabrics that way! You would think FQs should be enough but it always seems to be a little short on exactly what you need so part of the challenge for me is always working with what I have.

  8. Cocoa Quilts
    September 24, 2019 / 8:55 AM

    I love those canoe blocks. They play with the fabric beautifully and make great little sea creatures.

    • kathleenquilts
      September 24, 2019 / 3:31 PM

      It is a fun way to use the fabric and show off the motifs!

    • kathleenquilts
      September 24, 2019 / 3:32 PM

      Thanks, had to find a creative way to make it all work – glad you enjoyed it.

  9. September 26, 2019 / 9:57 AM

    Turned out so fun and wonderful!

  10. September 26, 2019 / 12:14 PM

    Such a lovely quilt! I love the sea theme and the colors. I’ve always been intrigued by the Crossed Canoe block, but I’ve never used it. Perfect choice for this quilt.

    • kathleenquilts
      September 30, 2019 / 10:44 AM

      Its a great block and really fast. I did put templates/paper piecing pattern on my test version of the block so you could try it!

  11. September 26, 2019 / 4:13 PM

    I love the fabric and the applique’s are a great idea. But I really LOVE your quilt and so glad you linked up to Put your foot down. Thank you so much for sharing it.

    • kathleenquilts
      September 30, 2019 / 10:46 AM

      Of course, I love linking up!

  12. sallymankefiberartist
    September 29, 2019 / 12:00 PM

    Love the way you paired the BOB with the fabric. Just perfect!

    • kathleenquilts
      September 29, 2019 / 9:46 PM

      Thank you, Sally!

  13. inquiringquilter
    October 1, 2019 / 10:02 AM

    Lovely quilt! Mcmusing story about the fog. Thanks for sharing it on Wednesday Wait Loss.

  14. Nancy Myers
    October 2, 2019 / 8:06 PM

    You quilt is very pretty. Crossed canoes always looked like such a hard pattern that I never tried making it. I might have to.
    Also, your story is so sweet and how nice you combined it with the quilt–a story quilt.

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