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!
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!
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!
In Moda Blockheads I am doing two versions, one scrappy and one all-Thatched. This is the progress on my scrappy version! I've used mostly fabrics from my collections with some additional fabrics from V&Co Ombre Confetti and a Little Red Riding Hood from Stacy Iest Hsu. I've mixed Thatched into these blocks to be a blender and make a link to the other version. For the rainbow bands I am debating adding some strips of color in between the blocks and I plan on having white sashing between the horizontal rows of color.
I'll be posting my blocks for this week on Friday so stay tuned!
Half square triangles in rows can be straight lines of direction or create more square formats within the space. Here are a few experiments in playing with different lights and darks on the half square triangle colors. When I squint my eyes, I can see things more as overall shape and not be influenced by the smaller pieces. Xs, bowties, circles...do you see them?
My blocks are for my brown row. I have Thatched browns but not many prints so Ombre Confetti is my go-to for brown blocks. I just love those metallic gold polka dots!
Visit Betsy Chutchian's blog for the pattern at athttp://betsysbestquiltsandmore.blogspot.com/
Did you know there are giveaways going this last round of patterns?? Yes! See Betsy for more details on this week's giveaway! Happy sewing!
What a fun block this week from Corey Yoder! I love the possibilities in this with the diamond shapes and squares. I didn't even realize it was Wednesday till I started to see blocks being posted so I didn't get a color study done this week. I'll be back to playing with colors on the computer for next week's block though.
On my all-Thatched version I wanted the lighter end of the spectrum for my layout. My quilt will be in rainbow bands of color and going from dark on the left to lighter on the right. One of the ways I get those lighter shades is by using Thatched on the back side. I love the soft look it has when I use it that way!
My print version uses Thatched with Sweet Pea & Lily for lacy branches and a graphic floral center. For both blocks I made my diamond stitch and flip blocks with half dark purple corners and half cream corners. I wanted to emphasize the star in the middle but I think it made more of a petal shape on this print version and I like it. The all -Thatched with the dark purple emphasizes a bigger diamond square in the center.
Visit Corey's blog for this week's Moda Blockheads pattern. Can you believe this is our fourth and final cycle of designer blocks in this sampler project? Woooo hooooo! Keep sewing!
String quilts are such a great way to use up long pieces of fabric that wouldn't be wide enough for a lot of other quilt blocks. For those of us who just can't bear to throw out fabric, using up these strips in blocks is very satisfying.
This type of block feels improvisational and intuitive. And multiple ones can form wonderful blocks in new rows and star shapes, etc, by keeping the darks and lights on one side and arranging strategically. Get the pattern for the framework of the 4 quadrants and have fun with some strips of color, pattern goodness!
Happy Moda Blockheads Wednesday! Well, its actually Tuesday night but I am going to post this early so I can go to bed!! On blockheads days, when it is my pattern, I stay up till crazy late night/morning hours to make sure my post goes up, etc. Tonight I'm trading that for sleep and you all can get this pattern a little early! Win-win! Read a little further down to get your link to the pattern (link in the gray bar). AND for sharing this week, it would make us all happy to see YOU with your block so snap a selfie for your posting!
This block is called MAD ABOUT PLAID and explores some lines that intersect in solid squares, both horizontally and vertically, to make a plaid-like block. You can take it very straight forward and do simple rectangles and two color combo, or play with those stripes more for gradations and accents. I wanted to have a block with lines and some simplicity to balance out the more complex and intricate blocks in the sampler. When I design a collection of fabric, I have the focal print with big florals, but the line also needs small prints or some kind of stripe or plaid to balance out the group. You can see that simplicity doesn't mean boring since there are still plenty of options for interpretation. (Also can you believe you have two weeks in a row with NO half square triangles or flying geese??)
My first block is clean and simple and just as much about the negative space as the colored bars. As soon as you enter color within the big rectangles it starts to change and have more depth. Play with gradation and lightness? Background color within the squares where the lines intersect can make that recede or come forward. The last one plays a little with different colors on the corners.
What if you wanted the colors of the rainbow? Carry a color all the way through the lines, horizontally and vertically to make it feel like continual stripes. Or, the middle and last one show the rainbow moving around the shape and being specific to the corners. I love how the colors look as accent to the black and gray version.
Focus on the center by just emphasizing the squares and one row of rectangles, making a central square. Or take a completely different and asymmetrical approach with more random placement or focus on a side or corner. I like how this can be a framework for more improv work. The last one shows that even if plaid is not your thing, you can still use this as a framework around a baby fancy block. If you make the 12" block, you would need to make a small 3" finished (3 1/2" unfinished block) for the center. That little 3" size is cute in the center!
Okay, you made it this far so you can get the pattern!! I hope you will keep reading (and see me in my work-from-home no-makeup glory), but in the meantime, your pattern is here. Click this bar for the link to the pattern info:
Want to know what I made this week for my actual blocks? It's October so I'm in that Halloween ORANGE mood. I made two 8" blocks- one all Thatched, one with a mix of prints- in the orange family. For my prints I used a mixture from Blushing Peonies, Solana (which should be shipping later this month!!) and Abby Rose. On the all -Thatched, I used Tangerine, Apricot and the backside of the orange from Solana. I love how soft an orange that is on the backside! And of course Thatched Cream.
But it is Halloween this month and I've just been getting the fall decorations out with my daughter. So I also made a 12" in Tangerine and a fun scrappy mix of black and white fabrics for the bars. If I make this into a pillow cover I will either make more to make a set of 4 or add a border around it in another shade of orange. I could extend those lines out into the borders like I did on my FRINGE quilt, pictured below. That quilt was actually the inspiration and starting point for this block design.
Are you feeling MAD ABOUT PLAID yet? I hope so and I can't wait to see what you come up with for this block. Oh, one more thing...those squares could be really fun for some cute novelty fabrics and fussy cutting! Think of little lines connecting intersections of cute prints or some little treasure in each square.
When I'm making a block with the lines/rows in the same fabric in multiple sections, I sew long rows of my strips then subcut them down to size for the smaller sections. This makes the construction go much faster!
This week we thought it would be fun to see a little more of each other so it would be lovely if you felt like taking a picture with your block. We love to see a face with the maker and get to know you a little more. So snap a selfie or see if your cat or dog is talented enough to take a photo of you (they are probably thinking 'leave me alone but scratch my belly first'). Let's see your smiling faces!
All this orange is putting me in a fall mood and I'm ready for a pumpkin latte! Happy sewing everyone!
Visit my fellow Moda designers for more Blockheads fun:
Corey Yoder - https://corianderquilts.com/
Sherri McConnell - https://www.aquiltinglife.com/
Betsy Chutchian - http://betsysbestquiltsandmore.blogspot.com/
Jan Patek - http://janpatek.blogspot.com/
Brigitte Heitland - https://www.brigitteheitland.de/blog
Lisa Bongean - https://lisabongean.com/
Lissa Alexander - http://modalissa.com/
Laurie Simpson - http://minickandsimpson.blogspot.com/
Vanessa Goertzen - https://lellaboutique.blogspot.com/
Stacy Iest Hsu - https://www.stacyiesthsu.com/blog/
(next week is Janet Clare!)
Janet Clare - http://janetclare.co.uk/blog/
Jen Kingwell - www.jenkingwelldesigns.com/blog
Joanna Figueroa - https://blog.figtreeandcompany.com/
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Moda Fabrics is doing a free block-a-day quilt sampler to commemorate. You can sew along by following Moda Fabrics as they post a pattern each day on their cutting table blog: https://modafabrics.com/tags/stitch-pink
Lisa, the owner of the Quilt Emporium (my local shop) asked me what I thought about mocking up this sampler in Thatched fabrics. Oh yes! I did these two versions that she has kitted at the shop, a warm tones one with a deep burgundy background and a blue/green version with a Navy background.
If you are interested in this kitted in Thatched, visit the Quilt Emporium website (burgundy listing or blue listing) or call 1 (818) 704-8238. Lisa is sewing the blue version and Susan V (felted pear) is helping me with burgundy blocks. I am so excited to see this come together and feel like these warm colors are perfect for a lively fall quilt. Here are the blocks so far!
If you sew along, share on facebook and instagram using the hashtag #ModaStitchPink
Designer of colorful florals for Moda fabrics. Modern to transitional quilt designer. Illustrator, sewist, crafter.
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