My Signature Sampler Week #2

My Signature Sampler Week #2

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I'm so excited by how many of you will be sewing along with me on the My Signature Sampler quilting sew along!

I've been anxious to make a sampler quilt with my new Signature fabric for Art Gallery Fabrics so I came up with an idea for a sampler sew along that will be as fun for me as it is for you! The bright idea is to utilize all the block instructions from the Sewcial Bee Sampler (SBS), Community Sampler (CS), AGF Quilt Block Collection (AGF), and the blocks from the Quilter's Planner magazine (QP) and let you be the designer! 

Using the previously written PDFs from my past sew alongs, the AGF block tutorials, and the beautifully written and illustrated Quilter's Planner block of the month instructions allows me more free time for other sewing and designing matters. Each week I will provide links to the various blocks I put into my sampler and if I've made any variations to the original block instructions I will give you that information in the blog post.

Remember, you can always refer back to the Sewcial Bee Sampler and Community Sampler blog post tutorials the accompanied each past sew along block by using the search bar at the top of this blog. There you will get additional information on how to piece each block or technique. 

If you need extra help with your patchwork or would like to learn how to control the direction of your prints in half-square triangle units and other piecing techniques, visit my Tutorials page for lots of great tutorials all in one place. 

For a listing of online shops that carry my Signature and other AGF collections, visit my Fabrics page.

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If you're just joining, let me tell you a bit about this sew along: You can create your own sampler quilt or sew along with me as I make my sampler. I've made a handy-dandy fabric and coloring book page for you if you want to make a quilt with the same blocks as mine. Both the colored (fabric) version and blank version have a block list that contains the block's sources and week order in four columns below the illustration. I've even included fabric information for the materials I'll be sewing with on the colored (fabric) version. Find the coloring pages on the My Signature Sampler Begins post.

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For this week's block I've made the Friendship Star from the Sewcial Bee Sampler. Download the instructions from the Sew Along page. To get this block up to a 12-1/2" square I followed the instructions and added a frame around the pieced block in the new AGF Pure Elements Flamingo solid.

SPONSORS

GIVEAWAY

Every Friday when I reveal a new block to My Signature Sampler, I'll also be posting the weekly giveaway. 

This week's giveaway comes from me. I'll be sending a lucky winner a Castle Garden quilt patterns and a signed copy of my book, Utility-Style Quilts for Everyday Living.

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Starting July 1st, 2018 I'll be listing a limited number of hard copy patterns of the Castle Garden quilt to my STORE page. This quilt pattern was written and made by me exclusively for the May Quilter's Candy Box collaboration with Maureen Cracknell's AGF Flower Child fabrics

 Castle Garden by Sharon Holland

Castle Garden by Sharon Holland

My quilt design couldn't have been anymore perfect for Maureen's magical fabric collection of a world filled with lush meadows, wild bouquets & the spirit of the flower child painted with fuchsia, blush pink & teal. The name for this quilt came to me once I placed the crowned girls in the center of the castles, complete with peach bunting flags!

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The second part to this giveaway is a signed copy of my book, Utility-Style Quilts for Everyday Living

Utility-Style Quilts for Everyday Living by (moi) Sharon Holland (Landauer Publishing 2017) is as much a lifestyle book as it is an 80-page, beginner-friendly guide to patchwork. Find easy-to-follow instructions, beautiful photos, fully illustrated step-by-step essential techniques and information to stitch 12 different quilt projects from beginning to end.

Each project is fast-pieced and encourages creative changes with skill-building design tips throughout. The lovely patterns are a reason for you to dig into your stash to make quilts you love. 

 Tracery Rose by Sharon Holland

Tracery Rose by Sharon Holland

I had the great please to remake the Tracery quilt from my book in my new Signature fabric collection. It was so much fun and by flipping the lights and darks from the original quilt I've come up with a completely different look and vibe to this vibrant variation. I want to find time to remake all the quilts from my book because--there's so much yet to explore!

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Giveaway Now Closed. Congratulations to Marianne!

Note: This giveaway is open to EVERYONE! If you're a "no reply" or anonymous commenter, please remember to include your email address in your comment--you can't win if I can't get a hold of you!

1. Simply leave a comment here under this post! (First comment entry).

2. Follow me on Instagram or Pinterest. Just let me know that you did by making a separate comment here to record that entry. (Separate comment-second entry). 

3. My blog followers get a third entry! If you follow via subscribing to my posts, just let me know by making a separate comment here to record that entry. (Separate comment-third entry).

4. Help spread the word!! I know that many of you already do, so I thought it would be nice to add that as another way to enter! Spread the word about the My Signature Sampler sew along on YOUR instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest by pinning any of my pretty images in this post, etc... (separate comment-fourth entry). 

That’s FOUR possible entries! Enter now through Monday, July 2nd! The winner will be picked at random around 4pm Eastern. I will post the name of the winner on this post once they've been notified and responded to my email.

*Don't forget to enter into this same giveaway on Instagram by posting images of your sampler inspiration, sampler fabric pull, blocks, or posting the My Signature Sampler badge (below). Use the official #mysignaturesampler hashtag every time you post about this sew along on IG to better your chances of winning. See my Instagram giveaway post @sharonhollanddesigns for full details. 
P.S. To Maxime Suchoski, I need you to contact me (use the contact from to email me) about being last week's fat quarter bundle winner. Your fabrics are waiting to be shipped!
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Community Sampler Giveaway Week #5

Community Sampler Giveaway Week #5

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Each Friday that Maureen Cracknell and myself are co-hosting the Community Sampler will be a Giveaway Friday. We've coordinated special prizes with our amazing participating sponsors for a giveaway each and every week! If you've happened to miss the first Community Sampler posts, take a look back from the first post Community Sampler Week #1 to get caught up to the present. Feel free to start sewing with us at anytime--it's never too late to join in, and it's free! 

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Community Sampler Sponsors

TODAY'S FEATURED COMMUNITY SAMPLER SPONSOR IS the Fat Quarter Shop!

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The Fat Quarter Shop was founded in 2003 by Kimberly Jolly. An avid quilter, Kimberly began her shop as a side business while still working a corporate position, cutting, packing and shipping right out of her house during evenings and weekends. From the very beginning, she was committed to delivering top-notch service for every single order and customer. As the Fat Quarter Shop's reputation grew, Kimberly decided to make it a full-time operation. Her husband Kevin joined her not long after, and with his help, lots of hard work, and a tireless commitment, the store began to grow. Over the past few years a few more people have joined the staff! As a team, they continue to branch out with the best fabrics, exclusive kits, quilt clubs, BOMs, and more. And they will always be driven by the passion that Kimberly founded the store upon, which is always giving you the best products and service!

SHOP  *  PINTEREST  *  TWITTER  *  BLOG  *  FACEBOOK  *  YOUTUBE 

We hope you enjoy visiting Fat Quarter Shop! 

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This week the Fat Quarter Shop is offering the Enchanted Love Story Fat Quarter Bundle that includes TEN love-themed, colorful prints designed by my co-host Maureen Cracknell for Art Gallery Fabrics! You can find the Love Story collection in a variety of bundles, as individual prints and quilt kits available HERE at Fat Quarter Shop!

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ENTER TO WIN!

Here's how: Since Maureen and I are taking turns hosting the Community Sampler Giveaway Fridays, this week is Maureen's turn so I'm sending you to Maureen Cracknell's blog to enter!

A BIG thanks to all of you who are joining the Sewcial Bee Sampler sew-along and to those who enter our Giveaway!  ♡ Sharon

Community Sampler Week #5

Community Sampler Week #5

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Welcome to week #5 of the Community Sampler sew along where we not only work on our patchwork piecing techniques but also share our makes on Instagram and have fun with a like-minded community of quilters. My co-host and sister Art Gallery Fabrics designer Maureen Cracknell and I are so happy to have you sewing with us and look forward to spending the next few months with you.

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There are eleven blocks in our quilt and each Wednesday will be a new PDF block release or finishing step for the quilt. If you are just joining us, pick up the Introduction PDF on the Sew Along page and you'll get a material list along with coloring pages so you can get started planning your quilt. Then, work your way through the first Community Sampler post to the present.

Many of the patchwork units (like Quick-Corner, Flying Geese, Half-Square Triangle, and Square-in-Square units) used in this year's sampler have already been oversized to allow for trimming and squaring of units before assembling your block. Please cut your pieces EXACTLY as given in each of the PDF instructions because bumping up the size of the pieces from the measurements give will not bring great results in some cases--especially in this week's block. Cut carefully and as stated in the instructions. Take advantage of my in-blog tutorials for each of the different quilting techniques used in our sampler.

Accurate cutting and use of a true 1/4'' seam allowance is a must for successful patchwork piecing. All your blocks will measure 12-1/2'' square (unfinished). Review how to cut strips, sew with a true 1/4'' seam allowance, and other helpful piecing tips on my "Are You Ready to Sew" post.

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Let's start sewing the Cactus block. Here we make two, half-blocks that fill positions 4 and 5 in our quilt. Download the free PDF on the Sew Along page.

Tutorial for Piecing the Cactus Block

The success of this block rest solely in your ability to cut and sew accurately. You'll be put to the test here and hopefully rewarded for your efforts.

If you're wanting to use directional prints for either the HST units or the rectangle units you may want to check out my tutorial for controlling directional prints that was posted during the Sewcial Bee Sampler sew along. 

Rectangle Units

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Cut your A and B pieces exactly as stated in the instructions. Yes, that means a true 7/8" on the end of those cut size numbers. The reason we are using a 7/8'' measurement rather than rounding up to the nearest full number is we are cutting our pieces on the diagonal and creating our necessary 1/4" seam allowance on our pieces and not trimming down when done. 

Draw a diagonal line on the wrong side of each 2-1/2" fabric A square. Noting orientation of the drawn line, place a marked square right sides together on a corner of a 2-1/2" x 6-7/8" fabric B rectangle as shown in the instructions. 

Sew just outside the line (a needles worth) to keep the unit square. Trim 1/4" past the sewn line (like we've done in making other types of units). Press toward the darkest fabric. 

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Note that I've rotated my pieced rectangle so I can align the 45° mark on my ruler with the long edge of my rectangle. Rulers vary for where these additional markings are placed and you will have to flip your ruler around a bit to get the 45° angle aligned to a long edge according to your ruler and if you're right or left handed.

Noting orientation of the seam and using the straight edges and 45° marking on a ruler, cut the opposite end of the rectangle diagonally, creating an angled end parallel (running the same direction) to the stitch line. Cut diagonally from the corner point of the rectangle on a 45° angle. This makes one A/B rectangle unit that measures 2-1/2" x 6-7/8". Make a total of four in this orientation. 

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In the same manner as in the steps above, and noting the orientation of the drawn line and parallel diagonal edge cut, make a total of four A/C rectangle units. Press seams toward the dark fabric.

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Notice how I've rotated my rectangle and aligned the 45° marking on my ruler on the long edge of the unit. These are just two different rulers but the results are the same, rulers can vary for where they've included these extra markings. Just make sure the diagonal cut is parallel (running the same direction) to the stitch line and cut from the corner point of the rectangle on a 45° angle. 

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Sew a large fabric A triangle (a 4-7/8" squares that's previously been cut in half diagonally to make two HST shapes) to a A/B rectangle unit to make a quarter section. Use the shorter of the two long edges and square short end of the rectangle to align the large triangle, right sides together. Notice how the tip of the large triangle extends past the rectangle unit. The seam line will enter right in the "V" of these two pieces. Press toward the dark fabric. 

Repeat with the mirror image A/C rectangle unit and large fabric D triangle. Sew the two quarter sections together to make one half block. Make a total of two half blocks. 

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I believe the success of this block comes first from good piecing and second from upping the contrast a bit so each shape can stand out. In my block there's obvious light and dark fabrics and they stand out in the solids. By always press toward the dark fabric I was assured my seams would nest when it came time to piece and this locking in of the seams made the points nice and sharp. 

It's unavoidable that the longest edge of our half blocks are bias edges. Normally these two half blocks would be sewn together into one block but for our quilt layout we need three half blocks. You may want to starch this block if you think it will get a lot of handling between now and the time the block is sewn into a top. Just take care not to stretch or vigorously press this block to avoid distortion. 

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You can see how this would make a beautiful full block and I have already designed a baby quilt using this block from my new spring collection for Art Gallery Fabrics (coming in May, so be watching soon for spring Market reveals). For my sampler, I'm using Art Gallery Fabrics Pure Element solids  and when it came time to photograph this block I happened to have this vintage quilt nearby and realized how the green backing of this quilt almost matches the Pistachio Creme green (PE-462) of the AGF solids!

Thank you for making this sew along so special I love seeing all the blocks being posted. Please visit Maureen's blog and see the progress she's making on her sampler quilt, using her beautiful AGF fabrics Love Story collection. Be sure to use the #CommunitySampler hashtag when posting your blocks to Instagram and tag both my @sharonhollanddesigns and @maureencracknell so we don't miss any of your beautiful work!

Community Sampler Sponsors

Don't forget that this Friday's a Giveaway Friday on the Community Sampler sew along. Maureen and I will take turns hosting a giveaway each week where one of our generous sponsors will be featured and offering amazing prizes both here on our blogs and a second chance on Instagram. Maureen will be hosting the giveaway this Friday and you'll be instructed how to enter at that time.

Happy sewing!

Community Sampler Giveaway Week #3

Community Sampler Giveaway Week #3

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Each Friday that Maureen Cracknell and myself are co-hosting the Community Sampler will be a Giveaway Friday. We've coordinated special prizes with our amazing participating sponsors for a giveaway each and every week! If you've happened to miss the first Community Sampler posts, take a look back from the first post Community Sampler Week #1 to get caught up to the present. Feel free to start sewing with us at anytime--it's never too late to join in, and it's free! 

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Community Sampler Sponsors

TODAY'S FEATURED COMMUNITY SAMPLER SPONSOR is AURIFIL THREADS!

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Aurifil is a wonderful thread company dedicated to developing amazing, new products based on quality and solutions. Established in 1983, Aurifil is an accomplished Italian company based near Milano, with a full-grown experience in producing superior quality threads for professional and domestic quilters. The company headquarters is the ground where new ideas generate original items, always more refined and advanced, to provide assistance to all the quilting needs through a wide range of threads in several weights and accessories. Aurifil's success is based on developing projects carefully, always looking for high quality and great style, with a commitment to create contemporary products that will appeal to everyone!


Aurifil.com  *  Instagram  *  Facebook  *  We hope you enjoy visiting Aurifil!


For this week's Community Sampler Giveaway, Aurifil is offering the lucky winner the Maureen Cracknell Bohemian Garden Aurifil Thread Collection! This hand-selected set of threads includes TEN colorful spools of Aurifil thread, in 50wt 100% cotton, in colors chosen to coordinate with her Art Gallery Fabric collections!

How to Enter:

Maureen and I are taking turns hosting the Community Sampler Giveaway Fridays and this week I'm sending you to Maureen Cracknell's blog to enter!

A BIG thanks to all of you who are joining the 2018 Community Sampler sew-along and to those who enter our Giveaway!

Don't forget this same prize is offered on our Instagram feeds and every time you use the #CommunitySampler hashtag in your public IG posting your name is automatically entered into the drawings!

♡ Sharon