Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Moda BlockHeads Week 28 Pumpkin by Jan Patek

It's Pumpkin time! YAY!  Well almost here in Texas.  Pumpkins will start arriving end of the month or early October.  It's my favorite time of year.  As soon as I can meet some early Market deadlines, I'll decorate. Love, Love, Love this time of year.  
Cooler days and nights, although we will continue to have really warm days too, 
the anticipation of cooler days to come, makes the intermittent warmth bearable.

Question of the Week....
Hand quilting...Do you hand quilt?  How frequently? If so do you have any tips?
Wow, I love to hand quilt.  I almost never get to hand quilt and if I do, it is more of a Utility style of quilting, that is now being called "Big Stitch".  I love the comfort of hand quilting and 'big stitch ' style still gives me that comfort. Slow. relaxed. Comfortable chair or couch. Good lighting. Size 7 or 8 Sharps by Bohin are my needle of choice for size 8 Perle Cotton.

Most of you don't know this, but I taught myself to quilt before I pieced a quilt.  I was given a top made by my paternal great grandmother. I picked muslin for the back and a polyester was 1980.  I drew on a swirly design, reminiscent of my Spirograph designs. I bought a hoop on a stand from Sears and went to work.  I found my calling...I loved taking every stitch in that quilt and treasure it still. For many years I hand quilted for the public. I miss quilting more than you know, even though I absolutely love machine piecing!!


Here is Jan's cute block for this week.  I'm really enjoying the applique blocks.
Thanks JAN!

                                                Click  Jan's Blog and her pattern and tips.

My version is made with a layered applique technique, which means I traced whole shapes rather than wedges.

For the mini, I drew an oval template. Tried to make it symmetrical and then traced 3 more to put on a 3" square of paper...too big.  So then I trimmed until my 'pumpkin seeds' fit. I suggest cutting a 4" square of background fabric and pressing into diagonal quadrants.  On paper, draw a 3" square, with a dot at the center of the block and diagonal lines if desired.  Draw one oval template and place on paper square. It should be slightly smaller in length and not quite meet the corner.  Fabric will add width and length to the template, so take that into consideration. You won.t want your seeds to be lost in seam allowances.   Remember Jan's work is primitive and wonderful.  The Pumpkin Seed block does not have to be perfect either.  Trim square to 3 1/2".

I'm always surprised how different these squares photographed even when taken at the same time, same light!

Enjoy your sewing time as the days get cooler.  Bring on FALL!

Visit all or BlockHead designers to see what they have done, and the ongoing list of patterns on our Moda BlockHeads Facebook group if you need to catch up.

Until next time~


  1. Love the pumpkin! I love to applique and I love pumpkins, so... Answer to this week's question, I hand quilt almost exclusively. It is relaxing and I really stink at machine quilting!

  2. What a treasure that quilt top is, heh?? Was it made in 1980 or before that? Would it be a version of ocean waves?? So nice!! I think that layering the pumpkin pieces would be easier than single pieces?? I haven't been making the appliqué blocks but Jan's last two have me wanting to try them. Have a great day!

  3. Oh I adore your little pumpkins seeds!

  4. I haven't thought of the spirograph in years,for the first time in my life I could (draw),feel like an artist.I still can't draw and it drives me batty.I can't make my hands do what I see in my head,thankfully my son can draw (not see what is in my head). Thank you for all the extra help every month and the 3in. block designs,it has taught me so very much,the exact reason for joining this bow.

  5. Oh how I LOVE hand quilting! With each stitch a flat surface becomes a beautiful design. I'm known in my guild as the one who "takes one stitch at a time". It's not stab stitching, but one running stitch. I can get very small, even stitches that way. Alas, I don't do as much hand quilting these days as I have arthritis in my fingers. I'm determined to finish a Mariner's Compass that I started in 1989 though.