I Wish You a Merry QAL - Block 5

Blocks 1, 2, 3, and 4 - I Wish You a Merry Quilt Along

Hi! I hope you've been having as much fun as I have making our blocks! I'm really loving how great my blocks look together.

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For my blocks, I’m using the Shiny Objects in Holiday Twinkle collection by flaurie & finch for RJR Fabrics.

Block 5 in our quilt along was designed by Sherry @ Powered by Quilting and it’s called Snowman. Here’s my version.

Block 5 - Snowman

This block sure was a lot of fun! There are tons of possibilities for making it your own. For example, I decided to add mittens, coal eyes, and a coal smile.

For the background of my block, I chose #3164-06 Tannenbaum from the Holiday Twinkle collection. For the snowman, I chose 2792-12 Snow. I also used 3023-05 Scarlet, 3026-04 Red Velvet, 3163-04 Scarlet, 3164-06 Tannenbaum and scraps of black and orange to complete my block.

Tips for making this block

As a QAL host, I’m here to help you achieve success with this block. Here are my tips for success:

The first thing I did was to lay out my pieces into the block sections. This definitely sped up the process of making the block.

After sewing each section I recommend pressing well and trimming your units. Trimming the smaller units of a block to the right size after you sew them helps you to end up with a block that's the right size (in this case, 12-1/2" unfinished). The instructions show you how to arrange and sew up the units that make up the block. Here are the sizes of the units in case you want to trim them. I also trim my block and in this case I trimmed it to 12-1/2" square.

  • Top of hat: 2-3/4" x 6-1/2"
  • Hat Brim and Face: 4-1/4" x 6-1/2"
  • Neck: 1-1/4" x 6-1/2"
  • Body: 5-3/4" x 6-1/2"

This block uses several techniques. The first one is Stitch and Flip. To do Stitch and Flip, you first mark the corner squares with a diagonal line. I use a sandpaper board to help me hold the square in place while I mark the line.

Place the square RST on a corner of the base rectangle, and sew on the line you drew. Press back towards the corner, creating a triangle. Be sure to trim the excess!

I finish up by trimming the unit to the size of the base rectangle. This takes care of any overlay by the Stitch and Flip square.

Another technique you'll use on this block is raw-edge fusible applique for the snowman's nose. For the snowman's eyes and arms, you'll be using embroidery. Sherry has an embroidery tutorial that shows you how to do that. Me, I chose to use applique for the eyes and arms instead of embroidery. I also decided to add some extra touches, such as mittens and a smile.

To create the eyes, smile and mittens, I simply drew them on the template page of the pattern. My thought was that the template page was already to scale, so my sketches would be too. Keep in mind that you'll need to reverse your shapes for machine applique. I used mostly circles for the eyes and smile, so there was nothing to reverse. Since the mittens were reverses of each other, I didn't need to do reverse them either.

I did my applique after the block was complete, so to test out my fabric selections, I simply laid them on top of the completed block.

By now you're probably an applique expert, but here are the basic steps: Start by tracing your shapes onto the backside of your fusible web. Then cut them out roughly, in fabric groups. For example, I cut out my black coal eyes and smile together.

Fuse the shapes to the back of your fabric, then cut out the shapes exactly.

Arrange your shapes and fuse them to the block.

Finally, edge stitch your applique shapes. I use a straight stitch. For my block, I used Aurifil 50 wt. #2692 Black, Sulky 40 wt #561 Lipstick, Mettler 30 wt #528 Rust, and Wonderfil 100 wt #711 Pure Orange.

You might also choose to create the arms and eyes of your snowman with quilting instead of applique or embroidery. You could either do the quilting now (if you're using quilt as you go to construct your quilt top) or later, after all the blocks are sewn together. In either case, if you decide to create the eyes/arms with quilting alone, I'd choose a heavier thread such as 30 or 20 wt so the outlines of the eyes and arms will show up more.

Be sure to drop by Sherry’s blog to get your free block pattern. Also, don’t forget to visit the other quilt along hosts to see their versions of this block.

Abbie at Sparkle On
April at JANDA Bend Quilts
Becca at Pretty Piney
Bobbi at Snowy Days Quilting
Diane at Cwilt
Jennifer at The Inquiring Quilter
Karen at Tu-Na Quilts, Travels, and Eats
Laura at Slice of Pi Quilts
Sandy at SandyStar Designs
Sherry at Powered by Quilting
Vanda at Quilt in Piece

Be sure to enter the giveaway!

By the way, there are two blocks this week, and two separate giveaways. To enter the Santa’s Belt block giveaway, you must make the block and post it in one of these three places by Monday, September 25th at 11:59 PM EST.

If you post your Santa's Belt block by the deadline, you might win this wonderful prize package—a Simply Redwork book, signed by the author and one PDF pattern of your choice from Vanda @ Quilt in Piece.

Special offer from Sherry @ Powered by Quilting!

To celebrate the release of her Snowman block, Sherry is celebrating with a sale! All quilt along participants can receive 25% off patterns in her Etsy and Payhip stores until the end of the month. Enter the code MERRYQAL25 at checkout to receive the discount.

If you stopped here last time for my Block 4 pattern, you'll remember that I offered a pattern discount as well. My discount is also good until the end of the month in my shop, and the code to use is MERRYQAL20.

Another giveaway!

If you happen to love giveaways, be sure to stop by my Wednesday Wait Loss. You can link up to three works in progress or recent finishes for a chance to win! Be sure to link up before midnight EST tonight to the current WWL. You can also come back tomorrow to my new Wednesday Wait Loss to see if you've won!

Come back for the next block!

On Tuesday, September 26th, be sure to come back here for the next block in our quilt along! You can follow me on social media or sign up for my newsletter if you’d like a reminder when the next block is posted. You’ll find all the ways to follow me at the top of my sidebar. If you have any general questions about the quilt along or would like to see the complete schedule, click the I Wish You a Merry QAL tab above.

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