Welcome to the preview of my 2023 Block of the Month series! As with the previous years, each block will be released to the public on the 15th of the month starting in January of 2023. If you are subscribed to my newsletter, you will get the block at least a week early! (Newsletter sign-up can be found in the right sidebar.) And…. the patterns are FREE! Yes, you heard that right, they are free! You will be able to download the pattern instantly as soon as it’s available.
Just like previous years I will offer a limited amount of wool kits for sale in my shop on the 15th of the month also. When my wool supply runs out, the kits are sold out for the month, so be sure to hop over to the Block of the Month page at my shop as soon as you can. There are also complete patterns for previous year’s BOMs for sale there.
Here’s a preview of all the blocks. They are not complete, some will have little details added when they are released, so they will still be some surprises.
Now here’s the really fun thing about this BOM project… every 3rd month, I will include instructions on how to piece together the 3 installments into a wall hanging that measures 12 x 42″ so that you can have it finished and hanging for the season!
For example, the blocks for January, February and March… along with a few pieced borders (instructions will be given in the 3rd month) will make a charming spring wall hanging!
Above are the blocks that make up the first 3 installments. Once you are done in March and follow the instructions that are provided in month 3, you’ll have the spring wall hanging!
Now, if you do not want 4 separate seasonal wall hangings, you can wait until the end of the year and make one large wall hanging that measures 36 x 54″ with instructions that will be provided then.
So, are you ready to get started? Find the fabric requirements and the cutting instructions here: 2023 BOM Starting Instructions. This PDF will give you the cotton fabric requirements and other supplies needed. The amounts of wool needed for each month’s block will be given when each monthly installment is released.
Here are some of my recommendations of my favorite additional supplies for wool appliqué. Some I sell in my shop but for those I do not, I have provided a link to where you can find them.
1. When I am working with wool appliqué on cotton (and this also works for fabric appliqué), I like to reinforce the edges of the cotton fabric background piece so they do not fray with all the handling during stitching. To do this, I use Fray Check.
This is an optional step but I have found that by doing this, I do not lose any of the fabric in my seam allowance so it’s easy to join these blocks when they are completed. Simply apply it to the edges as shown below:
2. Fusible web is needed for my wool appliqué technique. My favorite brand is Heat n’ Bond Feather Lite. Fusible web stabilizes the wool shapes and helps to limit the fraying of the wool pieces. It’s also the way you bond the wool pieces to the fabric background for stitching.
Most quilt shops sell this brand. For my BOM this year you’ll need approximately 2 1/2 yards. You can also buy it by the 35 yard bolt here if this is something you use a lot. If you have a different favorite brand of fusible, by all means use that one!
3. My very favorite stitching supply is Roxanne’s Glue Baste-it. I use this glue to attach and position any thin wool pieces, like stems, that are not created by a template.
This glue also comes in handy if the corners some of the fused shapes become unattached in handling the block before you get them stitched down. A little “dot” of this glue will take care of that.
4. My favorite needles for wool appliqué are John James chenille needles. I like size 24 because they are a good length for me and have a larger eye for threading floss or perle cotton. Choose the size that’s best for you.
5. Finally, my favorite threads to use are perle cotton. I like Valdani perle cottons in size 8. I feel size 5 is too thick and size 12 is too thin.
I like to use neutral colors from light to dark to stitch my projects. The lighter the piece of wool, the lighter the thread I use. Sometimes, I even like to stitch the whole project in a darker thread for a primitive look. However, if you want your stitches to blend in completely, you can use perle cottons or floss that matches the color of the wool piece you are stitching.
If you need a refresher on wool appliqué, here is my wool appliqué 3-part series.
So, that’s it for this week! Get ready for a fun year of BOM patterns. I think you will enjoy this one no matter which option you choose to make. See you in January!
Happy Quilting & Stitching!