Festive Baubles QAL: Week 1: Pick Your Fabrics + Cutting

Welcome to Week 1 of the Festive Baubles Quilt Along! 

We're excited to get this Quilt Along started! Every Monday beginning October 5th through November 16th, Cassandra from The (not so) Dramatic Life will walk us through each step of sewing together Festive Baubles and all her tips and tricks to make the perfect festive quilt! 
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Follow along with us here on our blog and on Instagram. You can use the hashtag #festivebaublesquiltalong to share your creations!
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Sew Along Schedule

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Goals for Week 1

  • Grab a Pattern 
  • Select your Fabrics (Optional: Use coloring sheets to help determine fabric placement)
  • Cut Background Fabric              

Fabric selection

This pattern is a great opportunity to use various fun scraps or small cuts of fabrics you have collected over the years! I suggest finding a background fabric that you love and then look through your fabric stash to find pieces that coordinate for your baubles.
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Background Fabric

Most of the quilt top is the background fabric, so I hope you choose something that you love!

For the easiest possible construction, I suggest using a background fabric that is either a solid or an all over, non-directional print. If you are a first time foundation paper piecer, selecting a solid or batik are the easiest of all options because these fabrics don’t have an easily distinguishable right and wrong side.

 

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If you are interested in taking on a bit of a FPP challenge, you may choose a print that has some directionality.  The background fabric I selected for the quilt along is directional, but the print does not have a particularly formal repeat that would need to be carefully matched.  I would definitely avoid prints with sharp stripes or grids.

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Baubles

Even though the pieces are small, these fabrics are the focal points of your quilt. The pattern suggests a dark and light version of three different colors, but feel free to mix and match using your favorite fabrics. While pulling fabrics, it is nice to mix light and dark values to make your baubles more dynamic. When selecting fabrics, I suggest choosing colors that contrast with the background fabric to allow your FPP baubles to shine!

 

Hint: If you are mixing lots of fabrics, check your scrap bin: the largest piece of fabric needed for baubles construction is less than 7” long!

 

If you want to try out some different color schemes, check out the coloring sheets on the resources page

http://thenotsodramaticlife.com/festive-baubles/ (use the password on page 2 of your pattern)

 

It is fun to incorporate holiday prints into this quilt, but you don’t have to - the original version of this quilt used no holiday fabric!

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Ornament Caps

This part of the block appears to visually suspend the baubles. I suggest matching your fabric to the thread or embroidery floss you plan to use to create the “strings” from which the ornaments dangle. I particularly enjoy making the ornament caps using fabrics with a bit of sparkle!

Cutting

 The background fabric is the only fabric you will need to cut prior to constructing the blocks. It is important to do this step prior to block construction to ensure you will have the long sections of fabric you will use in the layout of the quilt top. Once the main background pieces are cut, you will have ample pieces of background fabric to use in the construction of the FPP blocks.

 My favorite way to cut long strips of fabric is to carefully fold the yardage lining up the selvage edge before cutting the entire length of your strips at once. Take your time with this step! You want the strips of fabric to be as straight as possible without wavy cuts where the fabric is folded. A little extra time now will make putting the finished quilt together super easy!

 

 

That's it for Week 1, we'll be back next Monday, October 12th for Week 2: Block A! Don't forget to tag us on Instagram and use the hashtag #festivebaublesquiltalong so we can all cheer on your progress!

And if you haven't heard already, we have a giveaway going on right now!

Head over to our Giveaway Post to find out how to win!