ModBox QAL Week #4 – Put It All Together

Welcome back! It’s the last week of our ModBox QAL and it’s time to put it all together and finish your quilt top! Hurray! There will be no companion video this week as this week is simply about piecing your quilt top all together – pretty easy !

By now you should have laid out your blocks from Week #3 in color order according to your fabric color key and also placed the background fabrics #1 & #2 sashing strips in place in between the colored blocks (refer to Fig 8 & 9 in the pattern). Remember to alternate your background sashing strips from block to block following the layout diagrams in the pattern. See my first vertical row laid out in the photo on the right.

START TO PIECE THE FIRST VERTICAL ROW TOGETHER –
Referring to Fig 9/page 5 of the pattern, notice that each vertical row is made up of a left column of blocks and right column of blocks. First things first, starting on the left side, piece the background sashing strips to each of the colored blocks (similar to how we pieced the colored strips to these blocks in last week).

Here’s my first block in the first vertical row on the left side with the sashing strips laid around it and then stitched together.

Make sure to double check the unfinished size of these blocks and trim them down if needed (refer to page 4 of the pattern).

Also be sure to follow the pressing instructions so your seams nest nicely together when you stitch the rows together – remember: when stitching Background Fabric #1 sashing strips on each block, press all seams toward Background #1 (or the white fabric in the diagram), and when stitching Background Fabric #2 strips on each block, press all seams toward the colored blocks!!

Once you have the background sashing strips pieced on your colored blocks, stitch the blocks together in a vertical row or create a column of blocks. Make sure you keep double checking your fabric color key for the order of your blocks. Nest and pin the seams together from block to block.

Then repeat on the right hand side to form a second column of blocks, and finally stitch the the two vertical columns together to form your first vertical row of blocks. Repeat the above on additional rows if you making the Large Lap size or the Baby quilt. Be sure to press all the seams to one side.

IMPORTANT!! PIECE THE RIGHT SIDE VERTICAL SASHING STRIPS –
Before stitching the vertical rows together, don’t forget to piece together and attach to the right hand side of the vertical row the long sashing strip made up of the (7) 2-1/2″ x 12-1/2″ background fabrics 1 & 2 as shown in Fig 12.

I must admit I get so carried away with getting the quilt top complete, I always forget this vital step and then end up seam ripping my vertical rows apart in order to add back in these long thin sashing strips. Argh! And double argh!!

Also note if you are making the Table Runner, this would be your final step and your quilt top is complete!

FINISH THE QUILT TOP –
If you are making the Large Lap or Baby Quilt, once the vertical rows are complete, simply stitch the first row to the second row and second row to the third row, and then your quilt top is complete! Yay! Here’s a sneak peek of my quilt top in that gorgeous Kaffe Fassett! I love it!

This concludes out ModBox QuiltAlong – I hope you enjoyed it!

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Thank you so much for following along and for your continued support!  Look for more Colourwerx QuiltAlongs on our Colourwerx Facebook page or on our website under QuiltAlongs!

Until your next colour fix – happy quilting!  Linda & Carl xxoo

ModBox QAL – Week #2 – Decide Your Fabric Order and Precut

Hello!  And welcome back to the second week of our super fun new quiltalong: ModBox!

This week is all about deciding the order of your fabrics and then precutting.

By now you should have your fabrics selected for the color blocks, and also chosen (2) fabrics for your background. If you are just joining us this week, please refer back to Week #1’s ModBox Up QAL blog Post right here.

COMPANION VIDEO –
Each week of the quiltalong, I always post a companion video and this week is no exception….If you’d like to view this week’s companion video to Week #2 of the ModBox QAL, view it here:

DECIDE YOUR COLOR ORDER:
Before you can begin precutting you need to decide what order you want the fabric within the colored blocks to appear. This will be the order they appear going down the first vertical row, and the order will repeat over and over again as you make the blocks. See page 1 of the ModBox pattern for more information.

There are no hard and fast rules here – anything goes and it’s whatever looks pleasing to your eye.

Keep in mind that the border strips around each colored block will be the next fabric in the order…meaning Fabric A’s block will be bordered with Fabric B’s strips and so on….

Here’s a couple hints to help you decide your order:

You could go in color wheel order – that ALWAYS works and is so harmonious! You don’t need to start with yellow either – can start from any color on the color wheel and just go round!

You could start with your lightest value fabric and then place others fabrics in order of value from lightest, to medium to darkest;


You could randomly select your first fabric and then look for the largest or strongest color in Fabric A and select that color for Fabric B and so on….That’s what I did when deciding upon my order!


If you are using a prepackaged fat quarter bundle, you could simply use the order in which the fat quarters are in the bundle. Fabric companies spend a lot of time and effort deciding upon the order of the fat quarter bundles to create the most pleasing arrangement and most of the time, it works perfectly!

Regardless, once you have decided upon the order of your fabrics, label the fabrics in order starting with A, B, C D and so on…..

You should also create a color key for yourself by snipping off a 1″ square of each fabric and stapling it to a piece of paper and writing the letter next to it. You will not need to label your background fabrics….

PRECUT YOUR FABRICS:
Following the cutting directions for the size of quilt you are making on pages 1-2 in the pattern, precut your colored block fabrics and your background fabrics.

ORGANIZE YOUR BLOCK FABRICS:
The last step for Week #2 is to pair up colored blocks with border strips – refer to page 2 for more information. Simply though, take all of Fabric A’s blocks and place them with Fabric’s B border strips, Fabric B’s Blocks are placed with Fabric C’s border strips and so on….

Once complete, you are ready for Week #3 where we piece the block!

That is it for Week #2! I’ll be back next week for Week #3 – where we will begin piecing the blocks together !

Thank you for following along and until then, happy colouricious quilting! L&C xxoo

All Stacked Up QuiltAlong: Week 3 – Put It All Together

Welcome back to the last and final week of our All Stacked Up QuiltAlong!  This is the week where we put it all together – albeit some of you may have already finished your quilt top because quite frankly, once you’ve pieced the blocks in Week #2 it’s really hard not to just wanna finish off the top right away!

Here is this week’s companion video for you – enjoy!!

So by now all of your blocks should be pieced and complete – you should have (3) identical blocks from each individual pair of fabrics.

If you’re just hopping into the QuiltAlong, you might want to review the previous week’s posts right here:

Week #1 – Gather Your Materials & Precut the Fabrics
Week #2 – Piece the Blocks

Lay Out Blocks According to the Quilt Top Diagram —
Once all of your blocks are pieced, you are ready to lay out the blocks according to one of the quilt top diagrams included in the pattern on pages 6-10…..and begin to stitch blocks together to form rows… and stitch rows together to complete the quilt top.

Let me take a moment to explain the diagrams you see there.  Each set of (3) identical blocks has a number – if you kept pairs of fabrics together during the cutting and piecing parts of the project, you would end up with (3) identical blocks of for example, Fabric A & Fabric B …..and (3) additional blocks of Fabric A & Fabric B that are the mirror image of the first three (meaning the positions of Fabric A & Fabric B are reversed in the second set of three identical blocks).

So when looking at for example, the Baby Quilt Size diagram on page 6, you’ll see that the #1 & #2 block sets are the mirrored image of each other. It was just our way when writing the pattern to give you a little extra help for color disbursement and laying out block combinations.

Here’s what my top looks like when laid out on the design board. Again I’m using Shayla Wolf’s from Sassafras Lane Designs newest collection called “Favorite Things”.

Be sure to check back next week here on the Colourwerx Blog and on Instagram to see my finished ‘All Stacked Up’ quilt and to take part in the “Favorite Things” Instagram tour – Shayla and Windham Fabrics will be giving away fat quarter bundles of the ‘Favorite Things’ collection too! Woo Hoo!

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This concludes out All Stacked Up QuiltAlong – I hope you enjoyed it!

Thank you so much for following along and for your continued support!  Look for more Colourwerx QuiltAlongs on our Colourwerx Facebook page or on our website under QuiltAlongs!

Until your next colour fix – happy quilting!  Linda & Carl xxoo

All Stacked Up QuiltAlong: Week 2 – Piece the Blocks

Hello!  And welcome to the second week of our super fast and fun new quiltalong: All Stacked Up.

This week is all about piecing the fun All Stacked Up quilt block. By now you should have your fabrics selected and precut according to pages 1 -2 in the All Stacked Up pattern. You should also have a fairly good idea about which fabrics will be paired together. If you are just joining us this week, please refer back to Week #1’s All Stacked Up QAL blog Post right here.

COMPANION VIDEO
Each week of the quiltalong, I always post a companion video and this week is no exception….If you’d like to view this week’s companion video to Week #2 of the All Stacked Up QAL, view it here:

Set Your Machine Up for Success —
Before we start the piecing fun, I always think it a good idea to set your sewing machine up for stitching success.

Here are few things I always do when starting a new project that requires precision piecing:
• Lift the stitchplate and clean out all of those dust bunnies;
• Change the needle to a new needle – I prefer the Schmetz 75/11 Quilting Needles for precision piecing;
• Thread your machine with a neutral colored 100% cotton , 50 weight thread – my go-to color and thread is #2615 from Aurifil Thread;

• And most importantly, have a good idea of how to stitch a scant 1/4″ seam…

What’s a Scant 1/4″ Seam You Say?? —
A scant 1/4″ seam is a hair less than a full 1/4″ seam.

Many machine manufactuers 1/4″ presser feet are FULL 1/4″ seams . In order to sew accurate 1/4″ seams and have our precision pieced blocks turn out to exactly the finished size they need to, we need to stitch scant 1/4″ seams.

If you’ve ever been frustrated by achieving the perfect seam allowance for quilting then I think I have the perfect little tool for you….it’s the Perkins Perfect Piecing Seam Guide and it works like a dream.

Available at most quilt shops and through Amazon, this little ruler is genius! It is quite simple – it has a hole in the middle and a line that runs end to end of the ruler and through the middle of the hole. The line designates a scant 1/4″ seam allowance.

You place the ruler under your presser foot, drop your needle down into the hole and lower your presser foot on to the ruler. You can now clearly see where you need to line up the fabric edge of your units to achieve a scant 1/4″ seam. Look closely!! – more than likely, it will not be lined up with the edge of your 1/4″ presser foot, but rather just under the edge of the foot and a little bit to the left. Once you study this, you can run a piece of painter’s tape or washi tape along the edge of the Perkins Piecing Guide to mark the stitch plate of your machine for scant 1/4″ precision perfect seam piecing! You are ready to go !

Just a Final Thought on Fabric Pairings —
I know the All Stacked Up pattern says that once you pair fabrics together, they should remain paired together through block piecing, etc….etc…etc…

But really, do they?? Once all of your fabrics are precut and paired up, you do have one final opportunity before piecing to mix up or revise your fabric pairings.

Here’s an example: my first pairing for these fabrics was mixing the green (Fabric A) with the yellow (Fabric B).

But after looking at all of my fabrics, I decided I wanted to mix up the pairings. Now I know from reading the pattern on page 3, that I need (X) amount of units in Fabric A paired with (X) amount of units in Fabric B to make (3) identical blocks. So looking at the pairing on the right side if I wanted to trade out my smaller green Fabric A units for let’s say some smaller lime green Fabric A units, I could! I can mix and match all day – as long as I have the total units for Fabric A and the total units for Fabric B paired in each grouping as specified on page 3 of the pattern.

Let’s take another look at fabric pairings…..here are my first pairings. You can see I’ve got magenta with yellow, green with orange, blue with salmon and so on….

After I precut my fabrics, I revised some of my combinations to create a more color wheel order for the quilt blocks and ended up with these fabric pairings that I like a lot better. In the end, none of my original pairs stayed together and in fact each pair is a completely different combination of fabrics than the other.

So yes, before you start piecing, take a moment to review your fabric pairings ….if you want to switch fabrics from pairing to pairing, heck yes – go ahead ! Just double check that you have the total units needed in the final pairings to make 3 identical blocks.

Piecing the Block —
Referring to the directions in the All Stacked Up pattern on pages 3-4, start by making half square triangles. Add (2) Background Fabric squares to each fabric pairing. Place the square Background Fabrics with the square Fabric A units and make Half Square Triangles – (4) squares in will yield (4) half square triangles out.

Use your square ruler and line up the diagonal line of the ruler on top of the diagonal line of the half square triangle unit to trim and square down each square to the appropriate size.

Discard (1) of the units as you will only need (3) half square triangles for the project.

Piecing the block couldn’t be more simple and chain piecing the (3) individual blocks makes this step go even faster! So go forth and piece all of your fabric pairing to create (3) identical blocks from each fabric pairing following the instructions on pages 3-4 in the All Stacked Up pattern!

That is it for Week #2! I’ll be back next week for Week #3 – our final week- where we’ll be piecing the quilt top together!

Thank you for following along and until then, happy colouricious quilting! L&C xxoo

All Stacked Up QuiltAlong: Week 1 – Gather and Pair Up Fabrics and Precut

Hello!  And welcome to the ‘first week’ of our seventh Colourwerx QAL (quilt along) where we’ll be making our super fabulous and oh – so – easy “All Stacked Up”. This is a super fun quilt to make, is a great stash buster and is also very easy to piece. It’s a great way to start the new year!

JOIN THE COLOURWERX FACEBOOK GROUP: First, I want to thank you so much for joining us here.   If you want to meet with other Colourwerx quilty friends and aren’t yet a member of our Facebook group, I  invite you to join our free QAL Facebook group where you can ask questions, share your progress and of course, post pictures of your finished projects so everyone can share in the fun!  Also feel free to share this invite and any other QAL news with quilty buddies and invite them to join along in the fun!

JOIN THE COLOURWERX QUILTALONG FACEBOOK GROUP HERE

COMPANION VIDEOS: Each week of the quiltalong, also look for a companion video to be posted within the blog post like this one below.   If you’d like to receive alerts to when the videos are posted and other neat tutorials and replays of our Fab Friday Live broadcasts, then subscribe to our Colourwerx YouTube channel right here!

If you’d like to view this week’s companion video to Week #1 of the All Stacked Up QAL, view it here:

So this is Week#1 of the All Stacked Up QAL – 
First let’s review our super fast 3-week schedule!
• Week 1 (this week) we’ll gather our fabrics and precut…..
• Week 2 is all about piecing the blocks…..
• And Week 3 we’ll be putting it all together.

Week #1 – GATHER YOUR PATTERN & MATERIALS —
Here’s what you’ll need to join in on the stitchin’ fun –

• The All Stacked Up Pattern!

Purchase the All Stacked Up Paper Pattern here!
Purchase the All Stacked Up PDF Pattern here!

WHICH SIZE WILL YOU MAKE??
Once you get the pattern home, check out the back cover and determine which size All Stacked Up you’d like to make. There are five sizes to choose from: Baby through King Size. You’ll also see on the back cover under each size the number of fabrics you’ll need to gather – look under the row heading “Block Fabrics”.

I’ll be making the Baby Size quilt along with you, so if you look under the Baby Size for example, it says for the Baby Size needs a total of (12) Block Fabrics – 1/3 yard cuts of each fabric (or 12″ x WOF).

Now you can also use Fat Quarters or 6″ Design Strips instead of the 1/3 yard cuts. You’ll need the same amount of fabrics listed under the row heading “Block Fabrics”. So for example, the Baby Size version requires (12) fabrics so you would need either (12) Fat Quarters or (12) 6″ x WOF design strips. (Take note!! The pattern does not provide a cutting diagram for Fat Quarters or 6″ Design Strips so if you do use them instead of 1/3 yard cuts, just plan out on paper ahead of cutting the total units that need to be cut (found under the “If using 1/3 yard cuts” on page 1-2) before you cut your fabric!)

Another option is to make a scrappy version (like you see here and like what is pictured on the front cover). This is the ultimate stash buster! Refer again to the back cover of the pattern and look under the paragraph: “For a More Scrappy Look”. In a nutshell – simply select which size quilt you’d like to make, then look to how many fabrics you will need to gather under “Block Fabrics” and then double the number. Taking the example of the Baby Size again, if I wanted to make a scrappy version, I see that (12) fabrics are needed….I would double that number and need to gather (24) fabrics total, in 1/4 yard and 1/8 yard cuts. I would gather (12) 1/4 yard cuts and (12) 1/8 yard cuts.

HOW MANY BLOCKS WILL EACH FABRIC COMBINATION MAKE ??
The All Stacked Up quilt is based on pairing up fabrics and each pair of fabrics will yield 1-2 ‘blocks.’ For clarification, each ‘block’ is comprised of (3) smaller identical quadrants.

If you are using 1/3 yard cuts, Fat Quarters or 6″ Design Strips, each pair of fabrics will yield (2) complete ‘blocks’ – one ‘block’ will be the mirrored image of the other.

If you are using 1/4 yard and 1/8 yard cuts (for a more scrappy look), one 1/4 yard cut plus 1/8 yard cut pairing will yield only (1) ‘block’ or (3) identical quadrants – hence why you need to double the fabrics listed for a more scrappy look.

PLAN COLOR PLACEMENT —
If you’d like to preplan color placement, you can download the Small Lap or Large Lap black & white line art diagrams from the links below.

Sometimes this really helps with color placement and also pairing of fabrics. I’ll be using a beautiful new collection of fat quarters from a new fabric collection called “Favorite Things” designed by our friend, Shayla Wolf of Sassafras Lane Designs.

Here’s an example of my colored-in Baby Size diagram using the fabrics above. I just mimicked the fabric colors and colored in the diagram so I could pair up my colors and also evenly disburse the colors across the quilt for value and balance. Now I have a plan!! The links are below if you want to download the B&W line art and do what I did!

DOWNLOAD THE SMALL LAP SIZE B&W DIAGRAM

DOWNLOAD THE LARGE LAP SIZE B&W DIAGRAM

PAIR UP FABRICS & PRECUT –
Once you’ve gathered your fabrics and perhaps decided on color placement with the diagram above, it’s time to pair up your fabrics. Pair up the fabrics according to the chart below and keep the pairs together as you begin to precut and for piecing in Week #2.

Here’s how I paired up my ‘Favorite Things’ Fat Quarters after working out the color placement.

Now you are ready to precut your fabrics!! Again keeping pairs together, precut each pair of fabrics referring to the precut directions on pages 1-2. (Again if using Fat Quarters or 6″ Design Strips plan out on paper the total units that need to be cut (found under the “If using 1/3 yard cuts” on pages 1-2) before you cut your fabric!)

Once all of your fabrics plus the background yardage is precut, you are done and ready to go for Week #2!

That’s it for Week #1 – that was fun! And I can’t wait to see all of your fabric selections! Week #2 we will begin to piece all of the blocks together! Until then, please be sure to email us at colourwerx@yahoo.com if you have any questions.  Or feel free to post questions or progress pictures on our Colourwerx QAL Facebook Group.

Until your next colour fix and next week’s QAL post ~  happy and bright quilting always!   

L&C xxoo

Meet Our New Fabric Collection – #Colouricious!

Are you ready for a colour fix? If you answered “heck yea” then get ready – here it comes!! Carl and I are super excited to introduce to you our newest fabric collection, coming in April 2021 (drum roll please!…) – meet #Colouricious!

Coming to our Colourwerx shop and your local quilt shops in April 2021 through Suite B Fabrics – a new fabric division under the parent company Island Batik, the #Colouricious collection is sure to become all time favorites in your stash!

Known for our fearless use of colour, we’ve designed a fresh, fun and wildly colorful assortment of contemporary prints with a mid-mod flair!  Bright, bold and energetic, this collection offers modern quilters and sewists alike the perfect assortment of fun and bright tonal prints across the color spectrum.

With just twelve fabrics in all, the #Colouricious Collection can stand on its own to create expressive fun-filled projects, or be easily added to your existing colour palettes for an inspirational pop of pure colour!

NEW PATTERNS TOO! Also check out this sneak peek short video of our newest patterns using the #Colouricious collection – these patterns will be available in Spring 2021!!

So if you like what you see, do us a favor and ask your local quilt shops to order the #Colouricious collection from Island Batik website or from their sales reps.

Click here to see the Island Batik website!

Pump up the colour volume in your quilting world with the #Colouricious Collection! Until your next colour fix – L&C xx00

Just My Type Digital Design Challenge Blog Hop

Hello Colourwerx Peeps! It’s time to meet another multi talented designer in our industry and one whose work I have admired ever since Carl and I started working with Island Batik.

Meet Tammy Silvers from Tamarinis – she is a multi talented quilt teacher, pattern designer and fabric designer for Island Batik. And today is our day on the “Just My Type” Digital Design Challenge Blog Hop – welcome everyone!

When Tammy asked us to digitally render one of our patterns from her new batik collection,“Just My Type”, we of course said yes!   Quilty pals are the best and it’s always a pleasure to help out a colleague and at the same time get to play with super gorgeous yet to be released fabrics.

Tammy’s new fabric collection, called “Just My Type” from Island Batik is oh-so-cute and filled with a delightful array of vintage typewriter keys, coffee mugs, swirls and other tone on tone designs. The colors are a gorgeous collection of jewel toned teals, turquoises, deep dark blues, sea greens and bright chartreuse (my favorite)! Here’s a sneak peek of all the fabrics in the collection.

Tammy decided to ask many of her colleagues and friends to digitally render one of their patterns in her new fabric collection. Carl and I chose one of our newest patterns called “All Stacked Up”.

“All Stacked Up” looks complicated but it’s not. Easy piecing makes this quilt go together in a flash! Twenty 1/3 yard cuts plus about 3/4 yard of a neutral background is all you need to whip up this Lap Size quilt! But the pattern give you four other size options in case you want a smaller or larger quilt!

You can purchase the All Stacked Up pattern in our Colourwerx Shop right here:

PURCHASE THE PAPER PATTERN – ALL STACKED UP

PURCHASE THE PDF PATTERN – ALL STACKED UP

Even though we are near the end of the digital challenge blog hop, a heap of other talented designers have created digital images for inspiration so I hope you’ll take a moment and hop over to Tammy of Tamarinis’ website and these other designer pages:

Be sure to ask your local quilt shops and online stores to order up Tammy’s new batik line “Just My Type” from Island Batik. It should hit the shops this month!

Until your next colour fix~

L&C xxoo

Feelin’ Groovy QAL – Week #5 – Putting It All Together

Yay! We made it – This is the final week/Week #5 of our Feelin Groovy QuiltAlong! There’s just a few more steps and then our quilt top will be complete! What a fun quilt!

By now, you should have all your Large Swirls appliqued onto your Slash ‘n Sew Background Blocks and all of your Spikey Paper Pieced Border Units complete….if you’re playing catch up – review the previous blog posts here:

•. Week 1 – Gather Your Materials & Pattern
• Week 2 – Slash n Sew the Background Squares
• Week 3 – Applique the Large Swirls on the Background Squares
• Week 4 – Paper Piece the Spikey Outer Border Units
•.Week 5 – Putting It All Together (this post)

As always, the companion video tutorial for this week’s post can be viewed right here:

The first thing to do is layout on your design board or floor all of your units so far. Here’s what my Baby Size version Feelin’ Groovy is looking like so far!

You can see that we still need to construct and applique stitch the Small Swirl Corner Blocks. Let’s do that!

Make the Small Swirl Corner Blocks —
Gather together (4) 8″ squares for the background of the swirls and (4) 8″ squares for your smaller appliqued swirls.

Following the same slash ‘n sew technique from Week #2 – slash ‘n sew the (4) background squares together. Square and trim these blocks to 6-1/2″ x 6-1/2″.

Again following the same techniques for machine applique from Week #3, make (4) small swirls and fuse (or iron) them to the center of each slash ‘n sew square. Applique around each small swirl. Remember to attach a stitching stabilizer to the back side of each swirl block to help your stitches stay neat and tidy. (I had many of the larger slash ‘n sew background squares left over from Week #2 so I decided to use four of these to make my swirls from. I love them).

Now that the outer corner blocks are complete, we are ready to sew our quilt top together.

Putting It All Together —
First, stitch the Large Swirls Blocks together to form rows. Then stitch rows together to form the center of your quilt top. Refer to the pattern/page 6 if needed.

Next, stitch the right and left spikey outer border units together to form (2) strips – one for the left and one for the right. Stitch these to either side of the center quilt top.

Finally, repeat the above step with the top and bottom rows of the spikey outer border units, but also stitch the outer small swirl corner blocks to the end of each row. To complete your quilt top, stitch to the bottom and top of your quilt top.

And there ya go! Your quilt top is complete and I bet it looks fabulous!! Here’s what mine ending up looking like and I love it – perfect for a new baby or small child!

This now concludes our Feelin Groovy QuiltAlong – send me your pictures so we can see your cute and fabulous quilts!

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Thank you so much for following along and for your continued support!  Look for more Colourwerx QuiltAlongs on our Colourwerx Facebook page or on our website under QuiltAlongs!

Until your next colour fix – happy quilting!  Linda & Carl xxoo

Feelin’ Groovy QAL – Week #4 – Paper Piecing (Technique #3)

Welcome back yet again!   It’s Week #4 of our Feelin’ Groovy QuiltAlong and it’s time to learn our last technique – Paper Piecing! This week we’ll be constructing the spikey outer border.

But first — If you’re just joining us this week or looking to catch up, be sure to catch last week’s blog post and video – it’s all about appliquéing the swirls to the background blocks.

READ THE FEELIN’ GROOVY WEEK #3 POST BY CLICKING HERE

Make Copies of the Spikey Outer Border Pattern —
First, you’ll need to make some copies of the spikey paper pieced pattern included in the Feelin’ Groovy pattern.

You can use a cheap thin copy paper to do so and your home printer.

Or you can use Carol Doak’s Foundation Paper sold at most quilt shops. This is a paper specifically made for paper piecing and can also be sent through your printer to make copies.

TAKE NOTE!! Make sure when you make a copy that you have your printer set to “print at 100%” or “actual size”. Make a test copy and refer to the 1″ scale in the bottom left hand corner of the pattern. If this scale doesn’t measure 1″ EXACTLY as it says you know something is off. Additionally measure around the dotted lines of the spikey paper pieced pattern…it should measure 6-1/2″ x 9-1/2″.

For the Lap Quilt size on the pattern cover, you’ll need to make a total (18) copies and for the Baby Size, you’ll need a total of (12) copies. Make yourself a few extra copies just in case!

Cutting Your Strips —
I found that for this particular pattern that if I cut all of my black and white scrap fabric into 3” X 8” strips, I could easily and speedily paper piece the spikey border pattern in no time. So cut a variety of black and white fabrics into 3″ x 8″ strips.

What is Paper Piecing?–
“Paper Piecing”, or also referred to as “Foundation Piecing”, simply means to assemble a unit piece by piece using a paper-printed pattern or muslin fabric pattern as the foundation for the fabric strips. Paper piecing is super fun, super easy and super accurate – you’ll never cut off another point that’s for sure.

First, you need to just wrap your brain around the fact that you are sewing backwards or somewhat in reverse. Before begininng let’s start off with some handy tips to help you along the way – these are also in the pattern on pages 3-4!

• Reduce your stitch length on your machine to 2 or a little smaller – this will help perforate the paper and make it easier to remove later;

• The printed side of the paper (with all of the patterns, marking and numbers) will be the side you sew on and therefore it will become the WRONG side of the unit when complete;

• The solid lines on the pattern denote the lines you sew on. Sew directly on all solid lines starting with “Sew 1”, – starting and ending your stitching several stitches before after the sew line;

• Note that each part of the unit has a number and a color – piece the unit together in the numerical order indicated starting with 1, then 2, 3, 4 and so on. Do not deviate from the numerical order listed;

• Cut a separate piece of fabric for each numbered section of the pattern. The fabric piece should completely cover the numbered section and extend at our over all the dashed lines of the section;

• For paper piecing, place fabric pieces on the unprinted side of the pattern over the appropriate numbered pattern section. For this step, you may need to hold the pattern up to the light to see the section lines or place pins along the lines to guide you in placing your fabric strip over the correct section.

For exact paper piecing instructions, I always think a visual example is better – so here is my companion video for the week. You can also follow along in the pattern on pages 4-6 for detailed paper piecing instructions, more descriptions and diagrams.

Once your first unit is complete, trim the unit to 6-1/2″ x 9-1/2″ on the dashed lines. DO NOT REMOVE THE PAPER ! We will do that next week when we put the quilt top together.

That’s it for Week #4!!  Next week – Week #5 – our final week – we’ll be putting it all together – woohoo!

Until then, please be sure to email us at colourwerx@yahoo.com if you have any questions.  Or feel free to post questions or progress pictures on our Colourwerx QAL Facebook Group.

Until your next colour fix and next week’s QAL post ~  happy and bright quilting always!    L&C xxoo

Feelin’ Groovy QAL – Week #3 – Appliqué the Swirls (Technique 2)

Welcome back!   It’s Week #3 of our Feelin’ Groovy QuiltAlong and it’s time to start appliquéing the swirls to the slash ‘n sew background blocks.

But first — If you’re just joining us this week, be sure to review Week #2’s Blog Post to find out how to slash ‘n sew the background blocks..

READ THE FEELIN’ GROOOVY WEEK #2 POST BY CLICKING HERE

You can also refer to our Fab Friday Broadcast Episode #16 where I demo’d the same slash ‘n sew technique but used a charm pack to make a small pillow top!

VIEW FAB FRIDAY EPISODE #16 RIGHT HERE!

On to Week #3 of Feelin’ Groovy!
I do love to do fusible machine appliqué – it is so fast and fun and you can use a variety of stitches like the zigzag, buttonhole (or also known as the blanket) or decorative stitches to embellish and texturize your shapes.  Remember there are no quilt police lurking so experiment and have fun!

Also, if you’d like a how to video – you can view Week #3’s companion video tutorial right here!

But first things first….
Prepare your Swirl Shapes —
You’ll be cutting out (20) swirls for the Lap Quilt (on the pattern cover) or if you are making the Baby Size version, you’ll only need (9).

1.  First, gather the pattern page (included in the pattern) and following the directions on your adhesive fusible web, trace (20) swirls (or (9) swirls for the baby size) on the smooth side of the fusible web. Use a #2 pencil for tracing.

Rough cut these shapes out at least 1/4″ beyond the drawn line.

Again, I like to use the adhesive fusible web Heat ‘n Bond Lite.

Heat N Bond

2. Next select a 9″ x 9″ square of fabric for each swirl, and fuse the drawn paper shape onto the wrong side of each square.

Cut the shapes out neatly on the drawn line and be as exact as possible.  Use a sharp pair of scissors for this step.

4.  Once you have all (20) shapes cut out (or (9) if making the Baby size), you are ready to appliqué.

Fuse (or Iron) Each Swirl to Your Slash ‘n Sew Background Squares —
1. Before fusing you may want to lay out all of your background squares and swirls shapes on your design board to make sure you have distributed the colors evenly across the quilt top and also have a nice balance of dark and light values.

2. Taking your first background block and first swirl, peel the release paper off the backside of each shape and iron the shape in the center of the background square.

3.  Also place a piece of stitching stabilizer on the WRONG side of the Small Flower Petal Block.   The stabilizer will help to “stabilize” your stitching especially if you are using a zigzag, satin stitch or decorative titch around each of your shapes.

Any digitized embroidery machine stabilizer will work for this purpose, but my favorite is the Sulky Totally Stable Iron On Tear Away Stabilizer pictured below.

Sulky Totally Stable

Let the block cool after ironing and then get ready for some fun machine appliqué.

Machine Appliqué Around the Petal Shapes —
1. Set your machine up for appliqué stitching by changing your presser foot to an open toe foot and choosing some fabulous matching thread for your first flower fabrics.

2. Set your machine to your desired appliqué stitch.  I usually like to choose the Zig Zag and set my Bernina to stitch width 2.5-3.0 and stitch length to just below 1.0 .

Machine 1

Test, test, test before you begin.  Once satisfied, applique stitch around each of the swirl shapes. If you need some assistance in getting started with appliqué stitching, please watch the companion video above.

3. Repeat these steps above until you have created and appliquéd the (20) swirls (or (9) if making the Baby Size version) to the Background Squares.   Once stitching is complete, be sure to tear away the stabilizer from the backside and lightly press each block.

Then trim and square each block to 9-1/2″ x 9-1/2″. Refer to the pattern – page 2 for more information.

That’s it for Week #3!!  Next week – Week #4: we’ll be learning Paper Piecing – Technique #4 – woohoo!

Until then, please be sure to email us at colourwerx@yahoo.com if you have any questions.  Or feel free to post questions or progress pictures on our Colourwerx QAL Facebook Group.

Until your next colour fix and next week’s QAL post ~  happy and bright quilting always!    L&C xxoo