To celebrate the new colors of Thatched basics that are joining the group, I've got a FREE mini quilt pattern to share! Here is "Radiance Bloom"! The pattern PDF to download is further down on this blog post, so keep reading.
This mini quilt finished at 12 1/2" x 17" and is made from a MINI CHARM PACK and background of one FAT QUARTER. Add another fat quarter for the binding and one for backing and you have a fun flower ready to bloom on your wall. I called it Radiance Bloom since the petals seem to radiate out from the center.
I love to collect Mini Charms with their sweet size of 2 1/2" squares. When paring them to make half square triangles, you end up with 1 1/2" finished blocks. I wanted to show off the new pretty colors that Moda Fabrics just added to Thatched, which created a warm and spicy colored mix of petals. Since I didn't have an actual Mini Charm yet, just some sample swatches, I cut my pieces to the 2 1/2" size to start. But I love that this part would be so fast with a precut pack of those squares.
I think of these as almost fall-like colors and think it would be fun to do a mix for a spring flower, summer flower or winter flower. I love the new color called "Chalkboard Scribbles" and mocked one up on the computer using that as my background and my petals in Blizzard White, Washed Linen and Toast. This is the Radiance Bloom I will make next! I also think this would look fun with the background in Washed Linen as shown on my initial printouts. I can't wait to incorporate this more into some of my future blocks as a nice light neutral color.
And since I'm playing with it...how about a night time blue (this one on the lower right has a background of Dark Washed Indigo) with blue petals glowing in the moonlight? The stem is Green Curry and Olive and the petals are Forget Me Not, Periwinkle and Dutch Iris.
I hope you have fun playing with this fun little free pattern. Maybe even make a row of flowers in the garden with multiple blooms! My friend Pam (from Serendipity Woods) will be sharing an adorable scrappy bloom she made too from this pattern, so check her feed on instagram in the coming days (@serendipitywoods) and I'll post my winter one as soon as that is done (@robinpickens). Plant some color, enjoy some new Thatched shades, click on the PDF link right below to get your pattern and HAPPY SEWING!
Happy Moda Blockheads Wednesday! Janet Clare brings us this week's block "Windmills" with a fun pinwheels in a group of 4 blocks. I like how the block can be rounded off forms around the pinwheels or emphasize those corner points to change that outer shape. The second one reminds me of ribbons running through the center of the block with sparkly quadrants. The third one has depth in the corners within the 4 centers from the dark and light focused to the outer corners. The last one is a colorful party of windmills!
My blocks were cut out before I did color studies so I stayed pretty close to the original layout. This is the last one for my orange row and I wanted to mix in some yellow for the lighter range, and dark Tangerine for the darker range.
My Thatched fabrics show off the flip side for the pale orange rectangle sides. I used triangle paper for making my HST. With 32 HST per block, and 2 blocks, it seemed best to simplify my colors for those elements and use the papers so I didn't have to do extra trimming.
Fabrics from Abby Rose bring in the orange prints on my scrappy block. I stayed with consistent orange/yellow HST from my first block to be most efficient with the HST making. The rectangle sides were the place to swap out prints to play with my Thatched fabrics.
Hop on over to Janet's blog for the pattern this week and have fun with windmill motion and HST fun!
It is my week for the Moda Blockheads quilt block and I am feeling a little sentimental that this is all wrapping up soon. I have had such a good time! Last year I sewed the sampler but was not one of the block designers. This year, the excitement of sharing blocks I've envisioned has been a highlight to my months. The connection through online communities and sewing has been more important than ever with the changes we have all been going thorough with quarantines and working from home. In weeks that have blurred into other weeks, one thing has been steady...the fun and creativity of Wednesday block releases for Moda Blockheads.
Thank you all for being a part of this quilt journey and community! I hope you are excited with your evolving quilts. And for this week's addition, block 53 is "Bear Cubs Round the Campfire." I've been enjoying some projects with Bear Paw blocks and liked the idea of a simpler corner with a small paw. With all four corners surrounding a center block, it felt like smaller bears, or little bear cubs, sitting around the fire pit or campfire. I have actually been camping when a big, tall bear came into our campsite. He/she smelled the food cooking and we banged the pots and pans to scare the bear away. For this quilt block, I envision these bears to be smaller and so much more friendly!
I took the opportunity to put my little farmhouse from Solana into the center square on my print version. Greens with a little pop of blue is my theme and the farmhouse is warmed up with some happy sunflowers. For my all-Thatched version, I've got greens from Painted Meadow, Solana and Abby Rose, along with the original basics Pine and Chartreuse. I used the flip side of the Solana light green to get the lightest outer shades.
Speaking of Thatched...I recently announced that Moda is releasing another 25 colors into the basics line! It will be shipping either this month or February. I am thrilled to have more colors to play with and can't wait to experiment with more color combinations. Check back to my blog in the next few days because I will be releasing a NEW FREE mini quilt pattern that uses a Mini Charm. I'll have it as a download on my blog. I've got it shown in the new Thatched colors and I am loving the spicy warm colors and new periwinkle/cornflower blues.
But lets get on to the COLOR STUDIES! And of course the pattern and then, please enter to win a layer cake of SOLANA (enter on the Facebook Moda Blockheads page on my announcement post with the picture of my sewn blocks). The pattern is here - just click the gray bar right below this paragraph. But to see mockups and learn more about the GIVEAWAY, keep reading...
When first planning this block, I had a red center square for the "fire" but as I played with it and realized it was going to live in my green row of the quilt, I switched out center colors and added more subtle bands of color in the middle of the sides. I also liked looking at this with warm colors on a dark background, and again tried those bands in a different value of the lighter brown.
Next I tried emphasizing the squares in the middle, either through light and dark or a highlighted color. On the last one I dropped out the corners on the inner box so it reads like a big chunky plus sign.
The facets of cut glass? 70's supergraphics? More continuation of color from piece to piece and the illusions of lines turning corners. It is exciting that this doesn't resemble a bear paw any more.
And finally, a little rainbow love with a color wheel of color showing up in those corners. I like these as a pair with the light and the dark background.
So of course I had to stay up late and make these! I didn't have good enough light to photograph last night so I added these to the post later. I did these as 12" blocks (my green ones are 8") and I think that adding some extra borders would increase the size to nice pillow covers.
I've used some of the new Thatched colors in these. The background below is so fun to try out! It is called Chalkboard Scribbles and is basically the reverse of Heather from the first group (grey lines on white). There is a crisper white on white called Blizzard and deep and dramatic tonal Soft Black.
Thank you for all your lovely comments about the color studies over the weeks! I have greatly enjoyed doing them and sharing the mockups.
I'll be drawing a person to win a Layer Cake of SOLANA fabric. Please enter by commenting on my post in the Moda Blockheads FACEBOOK group (my post with the photo of these green blocks, not the color study one) and tell me what flowers you would like to see me do on a future fabric collection. I'll be picking a winner next Tuesday the 19th.
Thank you all for sewing along and may 2021 bring health and happiness to everyone!
I've been bursting at the seams, ready to celebrate MORE Thatched colors and I can finally share! What a beautiful way to start the new year with more colors and possibilities.
Because New Years is a time of making plans and goals and looking ahead, I can't help but include these new colorful friends in my future planning. I like the warm and earthy shades that will be so welcoming in a fall quilt. The names evoke a warm and spicy meal with Masala Spice, Smoked Paprika, Green Curry, Olive and a little sweet with Honeycomb. The crisp blues that have purple mixed in to make a lovely garden with Dutch Iris, Periwinkle, Bluebell and Forget Me Not. These might be great in a spring quilt.
Want more drama? Soft black is a nice dark black to balance Blizzard, the white on white tonal print. There are more neutrals with this group including Toast, Sand Castle, and Washed Linen. I really like how the light neutrals make a calming palette and look so pretty with all the colors. We have brought back some of the warmer grays of Charcoal and Stone.
This new group adds 25 new colors to the Thatched family, 22 of which are brand new colors and three that are brought back from earlier collections. Swatch color cards are in the works for shops and I'm thinking some postcards with a color chart might be helpful. I made up my own little swatches to help with identifying and designing with the colors.
If you would like to make your own swatch sample cards to use as you have little scraps left from projects, please download the file below and print on an 8 1/2 x 11 sheet of paper or heavier cover weight paper. You can then fill in the number and name of the fabric you used to help keep track for future projects. The jpeg file has 6 rectangles you cut and fold over and attach fabric in the middle with glue or a stapler.
This is what the jpeg file looks like:
Or if you want a digital representation to refer to, use this chart for the new colors. I'll be adding a new and improved chart to the side bar of the blog with all the Thatched colors together once I have my color card to make sure I've got them all covered.
Stay tuned for more Thatched sharing. I've got a fun mini quilt project that is a FREE pattern and uses a mini charm of Thatched and a fat quarter of background fabric, a fat quarter of backing and fat quarter of binding fabric. AND there is a new pattern I am releasing with some pillow covers that are shown with the new Thatched colors. Till then, enjoy this start of the new year and happy sewing!
I usually start the Moda Blockheads posts with my color studies. But today I want to share a time-sensitive thing first...a giveaway! Yes, in honor of 2021 starting in a couple of days, I am doing a calendar giveaway on instagram @robinpickens. Just comment in the giveaway post and I'll be selecting 2 winners on January 2nd (just in case some of you are already celebrating and haven't seen the post yet!)
Vanessa's SPARK PLUG block this week is a fun one and I wanted cheery energy with some yellows. They are yellow fabrics from my SOLANA collection that is in shops now. I used the white on white tonal sunflower seeds as my background fabric in the print block and I love the subtleness of the hinted texture. I really enjoy the "varietals" coordinate in this collection and used that for the center rectangles.
It was perfect timing to have the cover of this next year's Seize the Day wall calendar be the same cheery sunflowers that I used in the SOLANA main prints! I really hope this year brings more sunshine and happy days in a spirit of optimism and progress.
And, just in case you are wondering, the Seize the Day calendars come in wall, daily and checkbook sized formats. I just saw some recently at my neighborhood Barnes and Noble.
But back to quilt blocks...for the Thatched version I used the Maize color and got that lovely soft light yellow in the corners by flipping and using the back side. Stay tuned for some news very very soon about Thatched (hint, hint, I hope 2021 will be more colorful)
And now...COLOR STUDIES! I stayed pretty true to Vanessa's layout when making my blocks. But when playing on the computer, I had a little fun playing with a variety of shades of color. I find it especially interesting how the shape looks almost flower like on that middle left one. Or I notice the surrounding box shape on the one to the right of it. And I like all the color gradations on the last one and having some different color families in the corners.
Hop on over to Vanessa's blog for the SPARK PLUG pattern and enter her layer cake giveaway on facebook in the Moda Blockheads group.
And a Happy New Year to you all and may 2021 be filled with fun sewing projects!
Within the structure of "Night and Day" the inside grid can be a simple checkerboard or gradation of colors. I like how the little squares can form a new perimeter around the center or can work with the middle triangles to make arrows. The outer triangles can frame the diamond or play with colors dancing around the shape.
For my blocks I used Thatched in grays, using the backsides as well to get those lighter shades and subtle gradations. I wanted the effect of the checkerboard squares in the center to be very whispery and to highlight the structure of the box surrounding it more.
Dandi Annie became my fabric choice for prints. I forgot how much I love working with these big puff balls of dandelion seeds! I kept the structure of the center box outline and the darker corners on two opposite sides. I'm still debating if I need to rip out and line up those medium gray squares better, but honestly, it is the week of Christmas and I think I'd rather be baking cookies over ripping out seams. So it is staying I think. Sometimes we need to say "it is good enough" and allow ourselves to love the imperfections.
Hop on over to Laurie Simpson's blog for the pattern! And she is doing a layer cake giveaway on instagram!
Happy sewing and happy Moda Blockheads day!
X Marks the spot by Lissa Alexander! I wondered what it would look like with a different color on the bar ends? Like little white cat's paws?
How fun to play with switching corner colors and making the background "disappear" by using the same color for some corners as the big background. I think the one on the lower left looks like it is twisting. And the very last one makes the corner squares almost float. Can you see the white arrow in that one?
Looking for the pattern? Hop over to Lissa's blog and see what she has as a giveaway too!
There is something so satisfying about finishing a quilt. But there is something REALLY REALLY satisfying about finishing the largest quilt you've made to date, in my case a king size quilt!
I am a designer for Moda but I didn't know about Moda Blockheads from the first round. I was a little newer to sewalongs and I had not participated in any on facebook, rather only on instagram. So when one of the sales folks invited me to join the facebook group and play along, I happily joined in.
I wanted to use my first lines of Poppy Mae, Blushing Peonies and Dear Mum for my fabrics, along with some solids mixed in. My colors focused on pinks, reds, greens and teal/turquoise colors. I find as I make my blocks each week, a few stand out as my favorites. I really love this pretty block with the peony in the center and then the one with the crowns and the little pineapple!
One of the big benefits of doing a sewalong like this is it really helps to build your skills. I did not know about triangle paper until I read Corey Yoder's blog post about it. And I learned a variety of other tips and tricks. But most importantly, the practice of making new blocks, week after week, makes you better at what you are doing.
Since I wanted to make my quilt for my kind sized bed, I made additonal borders on the right and left sides of the quilt. The half square triangles are 3 x 6" finished size and the square blocks were made with leftover pieces from my other blocks in the quilt top. The small HST in those are 1 1/2" finished with a 3" square center piece. Making two rows of repeating elements of these made the quilt wide enough for me mattress.
I saw another person post about their layout with blocks arranged into larger squares with sashing between those and I loved that! So I combined the smaller blocks into units and some of the sections were one of the largest blocks. I liked the structure of this and the balance.
I longarm quilted this using the Whirlwind pantograph by Karen Farnsworth at Wildflower Quilting. And now, I am happily sleeping under my Moda Blockheads2 quilt!
Lisa Bongean blocks usually have lots of options for what to do with those half square triangles. This week did not disappoint! I love to see how the larger half square triangles on the inner corners make an octagon shape or a chunky plus sign on point. You can treat the outer HST as a fringe or a bears paw entire unit. Play with the corners in different contrast of light and dark? And what a fun V shape in the centers of the perimeter on the last one!
Visit Lisa's blog for this week's pattern:
Each week I take stock of where I have spaces left in my overall layout and look at balancing the more intricate blocks with the simpler blocks. This block will end close to middle/ middle dark on my gray row.
My print pattern block is using Sweet Pea & Lily grays. The Heather in Thatched is a cooler gray is works nicely with the stronger prints here. On the all-Thatched block, I am using slightly warmer grays. In both my blocks I have used triangle paper to make the half square triangles more efficient and reduce trimming time.
Enjoy this lovely block and happy sewing this week!
This week is ROSES for Moda Blockheads. Jan Patek has a lovely applique design and I was going to do that, especially since I have done all the applique designed blocks this year. However, when I saw it was themed "roses" I felt inclined to deviate a little and still do applique BUT make it with my roses from Abby Rose. And just doing a big bloom and bud and leaves to blossom fully on the square. I used fusible raw edge applique, which is the same technique I used for the other applique blocks.
For my all- Thatched block I wanted to use a flower that Joanna Figueroa posted a number of weeks back. I used her tulip block in the second round of the blocks and saw this alternative on week 32. She calls it The Posie Bloom and you can see her blog post with directions here: Posie Bloom Block. It is such a nice compliment to the earlier pieced tulip she designed.
These blocks will fall right about in the center of my orange rows. But even after my first alternative block from Joanna was done, I saw an alternative just for this week. Stacy Iest Hsu made this super cute Roses Alternative block in a 12" size and it is just the cutest, chunkiest flower grouping!
This one will go towards the light end of my blue or green row. Since Stacy made it in 12" and all my blocks are 8" I made some adjustments on sizes of pieces. CUT SIZES: All my flower petals are 2 1/2" squares. The stitch and flip squares for around the petals and for the center of the flower are 1" squares. I made the leaves 2 3/8 wide x 2 1/2" tall. The stitch and flip on the leaves are from 1 1/4" squares. The stem is 7/8" wide x 4 1/2" tall. When I joined the top flower with the leaves, I just trimmed up the leaves as needed to match the 4 1/2" width for each flower unit and the 8 1/2" width for the overall block. Thank you Stacy for this cute flower pair!
I've got a regular garden going on here and I'm enjoying the lovely blooms! Happy sewing everyone and happy decorating for the holidays and festivities. Stay in, stay safe and stay creative.
Designer of colorful florals for Moda fabrics. Modern to transitional quilt designer. Illustrator, sewist, crafter.
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