Snapshots Quilt for a Cause

Hi everyone!

This is Kimberly over at Fat Quarter Shop.  Pardon my quick interruption, Moda has graciously allowed me a little post to talk about the new Snapshots Quilt-Along starting right now over at our blog, the Jolly Jabber.  I could go on and on about this quilt-along, but I’ll try to keep it short!

The Snapshots quilt features twelve knock-your-socks off novelty blocks that celebrate moments of happiness in our lives, complete with an extra special pieced backing with a camera block.  I think the photos speak for themselves!

Snapshots quilt

Snapshots quilt

Snapshots quilt back

Snapshots quilt back

Most importantly, this quilt-along will support a great foundation doing really important work, the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.  If you don’t know about them yet, I encourage you to find out more.  In a nutshell, they treat children with cancer, research for cures, and never send families a single hospital bill.  How amazing is that.  But they’re able to do it through charitable contributions, which is why we’re pitching in with Snapshots.

Every single pattern to make this quilt — the blocks, the finishing, and even the specially-pieced backing — will be available for free on our Snapshots blog page.  We’ll post a new pattern and tutorial video on the 15th of each month throughout 2015, and the finishing and backing patterns will be released in the summer.  We would love for you to donate to our St. Jude Fundraising page for the use of each pattern, even just $5 per pattern, to reach our goal of $10,000 by the end of the year.

Moda Fabrics is awesomely partnering with us to match your donations dollar for dollar, up to $10,000.  So really, our ultimate goal is at least $20,000 raised for St. Jude!

In our quilt, we used Daysail, the upcoming fabric by Bonnie & Camille, and we have Daysail quilt kits if you’d like to make a quilt identical to ours.  But if you want to use another fabric collection or your stash, we have fabric requirements posted on our Snapshots page so you can gather together what you’ll need.

Speaking of Bonnie & Camille, we are so grateful to these ladies for helping us film all of our Snapshots video tutorials.  They went above and beyond to be with us, and guess what?  They’re sewing along too!  You can watch our intro video here, and in each video you’ll get to see us presenting the blocks with some sweet memories of our own, all year long.

Bonnie Camille Kimberly

Bonnie and Camille filming with us

Bonnie & Camille

Bonnie & Camille snuggling up, aren’t they adorable?

So, are you hooked yet?  Will you sew along with us?  Please, please do!  I’m so excited to see the quilts everyone is going to make.  On our Snapshots page, you can also find other bloggers who’ll be sewing and posting their blocks with us, and on Instagram we’ll be posting our progress with #fqssnapshots.  Don’t forget to tag your Snapshots photos so we can keep up with you too!

If you’re wanting to do this quilt-along in your local store, go for it.  We just ask that you please donate to our fundraiser and not charge for the free patterns, because, well, they’re free!

Thanks for reading, and thanks to Moda for letting us post our little Snapshots PSA.

Kimberly Jolly

Kimberly Jolly

Kimberly Jolly

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A Fat Quarterly Holiday!

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www.fatquarterly.com

Are you all ready for Christmas?  If you still have some sewing to do check out our latest issue of Fat Quarterly full of amazing patterns!

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What is Fat Quarterly?  For those of you who don’t know us, Fat Quarterly is a quarterly e-mag was started around 5 years ago by Tacha Bruecher (is it really that long ago??) and other members that she met via quilting bees and online swaps.

Who are we?  The FQ team consists of Tacha Bruecher, Brioni Greenberg and Lynne Goldsworthy.

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What’s great about our mag?

  • Our issues are jam packed full of patterns by some of the most amazing designers.
  • We accept submissions from anyone who wants to be involved so we have a great mix of designers that have been around for years and new designers so we can keep our issues fresh and inspiring. We try to foster a sense of community, after all we are part of that community.
  • The great about Fat Quarterly is that it can be accessed wherever you are. Login to read your copy of the e-zine using your laptop, computer or tablet and you can either view the flipbook online of download a PDF.
  • We have a blog and we are on Twitter and Instagram so you can drop in, say hello and have a chat with us!

What else do we do?

As well as producing a quarterly magazine full of modern and inspiring patterns…..

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We also……

we have held annual sewing retreats in London for the last 3 years   These were well attended by quilters and crafters from all over the world who came to sew, meet online quilting friends in person and to, well laugh a lot!

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We have also released 2 books since we began  – Fat Quarterly Shape Workshop and Fat Quarterly Quilt Colour Workshop.  They contain patterns produced by the FQ team and are an exciting mix of quilt and small project patterns, and as most of met via online quilting bees, block patterns.

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If you want to know more about us, how you can sponsor us or be featured in one of our next issues, come see us at www. fatquarterly.com or on Twitter @fatquarterly.

Have a great holiday and hope to see you soon!

Brioni.x.

 

 

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On Trend: Moda Building Blocks

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The Moda Building Blocks quilt which debuted at International Quilt Market in Pittsburgh last spring is trending right now in many different version. The original quilt with its bold and beautiful Bella solids is truly stunning. I plan to make this version exactly as is. But first…I had another idea in mind…

 

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A red and white quilt has been on my “bucket list” for a few years now, but I could never seem to find the right pattern. After receiving my Moda Building Blocks pattern this summer, I started formulating a plan. I began by starting with a stack of my favorite Moda red and white fabrics.

 

 

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I decided on scrappy backgrounds, too…mostly white on white prints with some solids, text prints, and low-volume prints thrown in for fun. And then I started sewing…

 

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If you haven’t already made this quilt…it’s a “must make!” Make the original or make it scrappy. You’ll be happy you did. I was just going to sew a few blocks on the day I started and ended up sewing all of the blocks in the entire first section.

 

Here are a few hints:

  • Start with a group of your favorite fabrics
  • Decide on a background
  • Make the blocks a section at a time so you can play around with the colors and prints that will be next to each other in the quilt. You will want to have a good mix in each section, and that will help you to keep things proportioned well throughout the quilt.
  • Have fun

 

How are you going to make your Moda Building Blocks quilt? Will you make the original or use a combination of your favorite colors or designer prints?

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Inspired

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The 2014 International Quilt Market held this fall in Houston, Texas was inspiring as always. And of course, there was no place like Moda! From the beautiful cross-stitch welcome sign to the whimsical fabric yo yo’s to the incredible displays in every single Moda designer booth, the decor delivered as promised…and inspiration was around every corner. Although I wasn’t able to get photos of every display,  here is an inspiring sample of the booths by the Moda designers.

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Kate Spain’s “Tradewinds” quilt pieced in her Paradiso collection was a striking backdrop for her booth which featured two other quilts, accessories, and fabrics!

 

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The Fig Tree booth featured full size and mini quilts pieced in the upcoming Aloha Girl collection. And the “Get Comfy with Moda” tee shirt was a fun reminder of the delightful Moda Schoolhouse presentation.

 

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Basic Grey’s Fresh Cut collection was another inspiring breath of fresh air.

 

 

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And Janet Clare’s More Hearty Good Wishes brought a delightful touch of the sea to the designer row.

 

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The beautiful Color Theory booth display by Vanessa Christensen also featured a variety of projects: quilts in a variety of sizes, clothing and accessories were beautifully pieced in a splash of color!

 

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Another delightful and colorful booth was Pat Sloan’s display featuring The Sweet Life.

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And while there were many things to see in the Minick & Simpson booth, their upcoming block of the month quilt, the Austin Bluebird Sampler quilt was stunning. I’d seen this quilt on-line and could hardly wait to see it in person!

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The Sweetwater booth featured Feed Company…another collection I fell in love with at first sight.

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And Me  & My Sister Designs had a delightful display featuring Bandana!

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I didn’t get nearly enough “people” pictures at this market, but I’m so glad I was able to get a photo of Bonnie & Camille. It was so wonderful to see them together with their gorgeous quilts featuring their upcoming  Daysail colleciton.

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The Laundry Basket Quilts booth featured Edyta’s upcoming Sticks & Stones collection. She also had her new book, Handful of Scraps and a gorgeous journal as well.

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Jen Kingwell’s beautiful Gardenvale fabrics were beautifully displayed in her stunning quilts.

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And Lisa Bongean’s Lakeside Gatherings was presented beautifully in quilts large and small. She also debuted her new beautiful flannel collection.

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Finally…a quilt market post just doesn’t seem complete without a photo and a mention of the beautiful and completely awe-inspiring Ruby Jubilee Celebration of beautiful breathtaking red and white quilts. As soon as I arrived at market I heard about this collection, but I waited to visit this part of the show until just before I headed home…it seemed such an appropriate way to head home…refreshed, inspired, and ready to quilt!

Which of these upcoming collections most inspires you?

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Tips and Tidbits

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It’s actually been many years ago now that I received my first lessons in quilting from my grandmother, and many of the tips she shared with me on that sunny afternoon are bits of information I use daily in my quilting…twenty some years later. Here is a round-up of my favorite tips and tidbits to share with new quilters: these are review for seasoned quilters but are simple steps that can make a big difference for new quilters just joining in and learning all about this amazing past time.

Measure Twice, Cut Once

This was the first thing I learned from my grandmother and one of the tips that helps me most in my daily quilting. It’s a simple rule, but it really does work. A good start…including accurate cutting and measuring…is essential to a good finish.

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Know Your Seam Allowance

My grandmother also told me to use a 1/4″ seam allowance for all of my quilting (unless directed otherwise by a pattern), but it was a few years later while taking a class at a local quilt shop that I learned what this really meant. A wonderful teacher showed me that my seam allowance was actually a thread or two bigger than 1/4″ which resulted in some of my piecing being just a bit off (those 1/16″ inch variations can really add up in a big quilt)! So measure your seam allowance periodically to make sure you’re on track. You can adjust your needle to the right or left if necessary, obtain a 1/4″ seam guide, or use painters tape to mark the true 1/4″ line on your machine.

 

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Keep it Together: Pin and Mark

Somewhere along the line pins seem to have received a bad reputation. While it does take a little longer to pin…the results can be wonderfully surprising. Although it isn’t necessary to always use pins, if you’re having trouble with matching seams or getting a lot of different points to match up, pins might be the best solution. While I don’t always use pins for simple chain-piecing, I always use them if there is something that needs to be lined up.

Properly marking is important, too. Use a pencil to mark on the wrong side of light fabrics or chalk for darker fabrics to mark lines for half square triangles and corner square (“flip and sew”) corners. While it often looks like it’s going to be just fine if you “eyeball” it, marking can also improve accuracy by leaps and bounds.

 

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Fabric Prep

Fabric preparation is another step some quilters like to skip: after all, most quilters love fabric so much they just want to jump right in and sew. But your fabric may need pressing before cutting, and this can be especially important when using pieces from fat eighth and fat quarter bundles. Just think of it as a little extra time you get to spend with the fabric!

Some quilters like to use steam when pressing their fabric for the first time. This can cut down on shrinkage later on–an important step especially when working with lots of pieces or smaller pieces. An additional step many quilters use is to both starch and press their fabrics before beginning any project. Whether or not to pre-wash your fabrics is another decision to make before beginning. Although I pre-wash only when I’m going to use fabric for garment construction, there are many others who pre-wash all of their quilting cottons.

 

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Handle with Care

Fabric can be stretched, and if your fabric is stretched enough your blocks might end up distorted. Use care when handling bias edges: don’t fear working with triangles for half-square triangles, quarter-square triangles, and flying geese … just handle with care to prevent stretching.

 

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I do have one final tip, and it’s my favorite one to share. Enjoy yourself while you are sewing and quilting. Your projects are yours, and they should bring you great joy while you’re working…quilting is the best hobby!

What is your favorite advice for new quilters…?

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