Improv Patchwork Trees Quilt

Modern Improv Tree quilt – also popularly known as the #HolidayPatchworkForest on social media. Click here for full tutorial, or click here to purchase a printable PDF version.


This fall I finished the large version of the Modern Patchwork Trees that I started last year. Here it is pre-quilting. I love this shot in the woods.


A couple of weeks ago I got it back from the quilter. I’ve been wanting to get a good picture of this one with the snow, but we’ve had mild weather over the past week and all our snow melted. Fortunately we got a skiff of snow last night and my husband was a good sport about going out in the freezing temps as my official quilt holder to get some shots of the finished quilt.


This was one of the most fun quilts I’ve made this past year. I started it last year, knowing I wouldn’t finish in time for Christmas, but I did pre-cut the red and green fabrics I’d need for making more trees and set them aside ready to go. Over the summer I found a few more great prints of current Christmas prints to add to the mix.


Then when I was in the mood this fall, I pulled out the stack and got her finished! This quilt is deceptively quick and easy to piece. My favorite part about it is picking and mixing and matching the fabrics. It’s a great stash-buster!


I love the inter-locking orange peel motif that Melissa from Sew Shabby Quilting used to quilt it. I’ve been waiting for just the right project to use this design. There’s lots of design and texture, but not too dense so that after a few washings, this will be a nice, soft quilt.


The fabric for the backing and bias stripe binding both came from my stash. I bought both of them at after-Christmas clearance sales in years past, figuring I’d use them for some future Christmas quilt. And here it is – they were just perfect!


This block is SO SIMPLE to construct. You can find the free Modern Improv Patchwork Trees Tutorial HERE. This is the second variation I’ve made of this design. The original design was for a mini version.


This is equally fun, and a little bit faster if your time is limited but you want a quick improv patchwork tree fix. You can find the tutorial for the mini trees here.


The the most fun part of this project has been seeing other people take this fun and simple improv block and make it their own! Search the #holidaypatchworkforest hashtag on Instagram for lots of fun inspiration. I also love that the brand new Honey Pot Bee is using this for their wild card block as they kick off all the fun for the upcoming fun this year. (You can find out more about the Honey Pot Bee here!)

I love seeing all of these happy trees! I think Bob Ross would be proud. As am I.


I think one of the other reasons I love this block is I’m a tree lover – especially evergreens in the winter. This is a quick snapshot from one of my favorite winter hikes in our nearby mountains, called Pine Hollow. In the spring this spot is loud with the sound of lots of creeks created by spring water run-off, but in the winter it’s such a quiet, almost sacred space – it always makes me think of that Christmas carol Still, Still, Still. So I think that’s what I’m going to call this quilt: Pine Hollow.


Thanks again to all who have made and shared this project. You’ve inspired me to make another one and play with more colors and fabrics! Once again – block tutorial for the large size trees can be found here and  if you would prefer a printable PDF version, there is one available to buy for $3.00 here.


You Might Also Like


  • Reply
    Pat S
    December 17, 2016 at 8:09 pm

    Gorgeous. I pinned this a few months ago but haven’t done anything ,,, yet. 😀

  • Reply
    December 17, 2016 at 8:09 pm

    Do you want some of my snow? We must have at least 2 feet of snow on the ground…

  • Reply
    Karen Seitz
    December 17, 2016 at 11:24 pm

    Love it!

  • Reply
    December 18, 2016 at 4:17 am

    l love this pattern so much, and am grateful my cutting doesn’t have to “perfect.” I have the fabric for it but haven’t yet had the time to put it together. Hopefully next Christmas I’ll have a picture of my quilt to add to your collection.

    • Reply
      Amy Smart
      December 19, 2016 at 10:06 am

      Way more fun to be early for next Christmas than stressed out for this Christmas. 😉 Thanks Ellen!

  • Reply
    Pam Arbour
    December 18, 2016 at 5:48 am

    Your quilt is beautiful. I read your tutorial and you are right, it looks so detailed and yet deceptively easy to make. I am really looking forward to making one of them in 2017. I will be sure to give you credit for this fabulous tutorial.

    • Reply
      Amy Smart
      December 19, 2016 at 10:06 am

      Thanks Pam! I hope you enjoy it!

  • Reply
    nadine donovan
    December 18, 2016 at 6:52 am

    I am a tree lover also. I love your tree block- I love the different sizes of quilts that you have made using this block

  • Reply
    Kathy E.
    December 18, 2016 at 7:58 am

    I’ve enjoyed every version of this block with all of the color variations and sizes. It’s on my list to make at least a mini with it!

    • Reply
      Amy Smart
      December 19, 2016 at 9:47 am

      I’ve loved the variety of versions too – it’s inspired me to make at least another mini too!

  • Reply
    December 18, 2016 at 9:01 am

    SO cute Amy, I love this. Now I want to make one…. or many. I love trees.
    Raking, no raking involved here. That is a plus

    • Reply
      Amy Smart
      December 19, 2016 at 9:45 am

      Hahah! Yes! Trees with no raking or shedding pine-needles = perfect!

  • Reply
    Cheryl Brickey
    December 18, 2016 at 6:01 pm

    Great Christmas quilt. I really like the all of the different prints and that quilting pattern is wonderful.

    • Reply
      Amy Smart
      December 19, 2016 at 9:45 am

      Thanks Cheryl! I’m with you – that quilting pattern is awesome!

  • Reply
    Kim B.
    December 18, 2016 at 11:48 pm

    Lovely lovely lovely. Nice greens and reds while still feeling fresh! Thank you for sharing and for sharing the tutorial. Also going to see what other folks have been up to with the hashtag! Merry Christmas Amy!

    • Reply
      Amy Smart
      December 19, 2016 at 9:44 am

      Thanks Kim! And Merry Christmas to you too!

  • Reply
    December 19, 2016 at 1:49 am

    I am a woman from Sweden.
    I saw your tutorial off “Modern Christmas Tree” and like it.
    If you would like to see what I have made off it,
    you can look in my blogg Dollandesign to day.



  • Reply
    December 19, 2016 at 8:43 am

    It’s beautiful Amy! It’s been so fun so see lots of other versions pop up on Instagram too. It’s a winner! Have a Very Merry Christmas — can’t wait to see what fun stuff you get up to next year!

    • Reply
      Amy Smart
      December 19, 2016 at 9:43 am

      Thanks Anna! I’ve loved seeing what other people have done with this one!

      I hope you have a very Merry Christmas too!

  • Reply
    December 19, 2016 at 10:57 am

    What a fun quilt! I’ve been thinking I need to make a more modern quilt for the holidays. This just might be the one. Maybe I should start in January. Hmmm! Your Pine Hollow picture is lovely. You just can’t beat evergreens in the snow for winter beauty.

  • Reply
    December 19, 2016 at 4:38 pm

    I can’t begin to tell you how beautiful this quilt is!! It’s fabulous. I love how scrappy it looks too. Thank you for sharing your tutorial for it. It looks like such a fun quilt to make.

  • Reply
    Lara Buccella
    December 20, 2016 at 12:13 pm

    Everything about this quilt is perfect Amy! And hooray for having it done for this Christmas!

  • Reply
    Kathleen O'Grady
    December 20, 2016 at 12:14 pm

    This quilt is so awesome!! I want to make one right now!!! (if only I could) I love the simplicity of this quilt yet it is so beautiful and happy to me. This is on my to-do list for sure!

  • Reply
    July 25, 2017 at 6:33 pm

    I’m such a pattern follower, wondering if you have any idea of how much yardage I would need for the trees? I LOVE THIS PATTERN!

  • Reply
    Carol Wingo
    August 13, 2018 at 1:34 pm

    I am so glad I found you on Pinterest. I love this tree pattern. I am making trees now for table runners for Christmas presents.

    • Reply
      August 15, 2018 at 9:53 am

      That’s awesome! Thanks, Carol!

    Leave a Reply

    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.