Welcome to the start of the 2021 BOM! I’ve been showing you previews of the blocks over the last few months and I will show you more today. As with all of my BOMs, we will start out with Starter Instructions. These will give you the fabric requirements and any cutting and piecing (if any) that needs to be done before you get started. I will also share with you some information on tools I recommend for wool applique and some tips on getting started if you are new to this. So, let’s get started!
2021 Block of the Month
Here’s the complete 2021 BOM:
The finished wall hanging will be 40 x 56″. However, the fun of this project is the blocks can be stand alone wall hangings or pillows if you do not want a large wall hanging. Even the long “blocks” on the top and bottom can make attractive bolster style pillows. The main thing is to have fun! So, here are the starter instructions: 2021 BOM Starter Instructions.
Here’s a few of my favorite blocks that can also make fun wall hangings on their own:
Wool Applique Tips & Tools
Tip#1: I recommend reinforcing the edges of your fabric background with Fray Check.
This helps keep your block edges from fraying from all the handling while stitching. It’s a good idea so you do not lose any of your seam allowance.
Tip#2: Templates. For pattern templates that need to be used several times over for tracing, I like to copy them directly onto card stock from the pattern or glue the template page to a piece of card stock and then cut them out. This makes the templates sturdier and insures each of the shapes you trace are the same size.
Once you have them cut out, you can write on the templates which pattern they belong to, the amount of shapes needed for the pattern and the color wool to be used. Save them in a plastic bag attached to the pattern for future use!
Tip #3: Use the thread that will complement your project. I like to use Valdani Perle Cotton threads in size 8. I often use an array of neutrals from light to dark, depending on the color of my applique piece.
I like to store them in a plastic case I found at the local craft store. I can also keep the cover on and pull the thread from inside to protect my threads from a particularly curious cat!
These threads come in a large variety of colors and sizes. You may want to match the color of thread to each applique piece. You also might want to use a thicker or thinner thread than I use. Try threads in different colors and sizes until you get the look you like!
Tip #4: I recommend using a chenille needle, size 22 with these threads. This is the brand I use:
I like John James Chenille size 22 because of their length and the size of the eye. It’s easy to thread size 8 perle cotton with this size. Once again this is a personal preference. You may find another needle brand and size that works better for you.
Tip#5: Even if you use fusible web to secure your applique pieces, it’s always a good idea to keep some fabric glue by your side in case a piece loosens while you are stitching. I use both the large size and a smaller size that I keep in my thread box.
So, those are my tips and tools to get started if you are new to wool applique. I also have a few wool applique mini tutorial videos for some stitching instruction:
Back to the BOM now….
Block 1 of the 2021 BOM will be released to the public on 1/15/21. There will also be a limited supply of wool only kits the will be available in my shop on that day at 5pm central time.
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I hope you’ll be with me for another fun year of quilting and stitching!
Until next week,
Happy Quilting & Stitching!