Welcome to the Smashing Quilt Sashing series, where every month we review some sashing options for the Growing up QAL blocks.

The fabric requirements for the sashing options presented in this pattern are for a 4x3 layout, with 12'' finished blocks.
However in the pattern I try to give you a general idea on how these sashing options work, so you can easily adapt them with different size blocks and using more or fewer blocks.

If you didn't hear about the QAL before, please visit the Growing up QAL page!
Visit the QAL page to find all information about the quilt layout, all the future blocks and the rules to participate.
I recommend you to subscribe to the QAL announcements via email, so you don't miss out on future posts! You find the subscription Google form on the same QAL page (at the end of the page).

Now let's get down to some details.

This month we start with strips and cornerstones.
Playing with colors and shapes give 
two completely different looks 
with the same easy assembly technique!

Download the PDF pattern here


Remember that the pattern for the quilt blocks are shared for free via email to the people that submitted their email in the Google Form in the QAL page.
If you did that, you should already have the pattern!

If you didn't (or you have troubles with the form) just send me an email at tweloq(at)gmail(dot)com and I will get the pattern out to you.

For the full list of rules of the QAL, please refer to the post listing all the QAL rules!

Next week we are going to see some inspirations from quilters on the web using applique techniques to do amazing things!!

So are you excited about this QAL?
I surely am!! Grab my button and share the love (button on the side bar)!
The more people join in, the more fun it will be!!

Until next week,
Happy Stitching!!


Remember: all the details about the series are collected in the QAL web page.


Let's share our blocks, cheer each other up and inspire the quilting community!

If you didn't hear about the QAL before, please visit the Growing up QAL page
Visit the QAL page to find all information about the quilt layout, all the future blocks and the rules to participate.
I recommend you to subscribe to the QAL announcements via email, so you don't miss out on future posts! You find the subscription form on the same QAL page (at the bottom).

Now let's get down to some details.

This month technique is Raw Edge applique, 
and we have two different blocks to practise 
intricate designs that are actually very simple to make!!

Remember that the pattern for the board is shared for free via email to the people that submitted their email in the Google Form in the QAL page.
If you did that, you should already have the pattern!

If you didn't (or you have troubles with that) just send me an email at tweloq(at)gmail(dot)com and I will get the pattern out to you.

For the full list of rules and explanation on how/where to share your projects, please refer to the post listing all the QAL rules!

And if you need an extra incentive, we are going to have THREE winners for this month. 
So this what you are playing for:

Winner 1
Mad About Patchwork: $40 gift certificate!!

Winner 2
Green Fairy Quilts: $25 gift certificate!!



Winner 3
2 fat quarters from our Northcott featured collection (shipped by me, to anywhere in the world!)


I will draw the random winners between all the people entering a picture of one block from January. Multiple blocks will give you multiple entries, as long as they are in separate picture in a separate link in the linky :).

I will announce the winners when I share the next month pattern.

So, let's link up our fun block, friends!



Next week I will give you some sashing ideas for alternate final layouts, and the following weeks we are going to see some extra inspiration from quilters on the web using this month technique to do amazing things!!

So are you excited about this QAL?
I surely am!! Grab my button and share the love (button on the side bar)!
The more people join in, the more fun it will be!!

Until next week,
Happy Stitching!!


Remember: all the details about the series are collected in the QAL web page.


Finally here it is! It's the first block of the fun Growing up QAL!

If you didn't hear about the QAL before, please visit the Growing up QAL page
This is a wonderful Skill Builder, because every month I will be featuring a different technique and we will have step by step instructions to walk you through the entire process, from cut to finishing.

Visit the QAL page to find all the information about the event rules, the quilt layout, all the future techniques and more.
I recommend you to subscribe to the QAL announcements via email, so you don't miss out on future posts! You find the subscription form on the same QAL page.

Now let's get down to some details.

This month technique is the Raw Edge applique, 
and we have two different blocks to practise 
intricate designs that are actually very simple to make!

Remember that the pattern for the blocks is shared for free via email.
If you subscribed for the updates, you will get it by the end of today (or maybe you already got it)!

If you don't get it by Tuesday, please send me an email at tweloq(at)gmail(dot)com. I will send you the pattern and add to the list of subscribers.

To get the next pattern for free you need to share a picture of the current month block.
For the full list of rules and explanation on how/where to share your projects, please refer to the post listing all the QAL rules and to the post with my self-interview.

Next week I will feature the link party where you can link up your blocks.
The following week I will give you some sashing ideas for the final quilt, and the weeks after that we are going to see some inspiring work of other quilters using the same technique in different blocks!

So are you excited about this QAL?
I surely am!! Grab my button and share the love (button on the side bar)!
The more people join in, the more fun it will be!!

Until next week,
Happy Stitching!!


Remember: all the details about the series are collected in the QAL web page.

Let's have a party... a linky party!
This post is where the party will be hosted for the entire 2017. 

If you know how to link up your block, just scroll down and do that! :)

If this is the first time linking up a picture, you may want to read a tutorial about that. A good one is the one Bonnie Hunter wrote HERE.

If you are adding a Pinterest, Instagram, FlickR photo, just follow the appropriate tutorial
I couldn't find a tutorial for Facebook, but it could be similar (I am not sure though).  

Link the specific post/picture (with specific URL) and not your main blog or your main account!

Your blog, Flickr, Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook photo must be visible to ALL. 
If he posts are private you cannot link up.  

In this link party only blocks from the "Growing Up QAL" series should be added.
I reserve the right to delete any link not following the rules without any notice.
I am reserving the right to change the rules of the linky and of the QAL at any time. If you are uncomfortable with it, you can drop out at any time (and if you want to read the reason behind my way of running QAL, please read this post where I clarify all my whys :) )
This link party will be open all year long so you will be able to add your projects at any time! 

Make sure to visit some of the links and cheer along! 
It's much more fun this way!!

Happy Stitching!!


Remember: all the details about the series are collected in the QAL web page.



Find some fabric you love... or some that you don't mind using to test blocks! :)

There is NO complete supply list for this project.

This QAL has blocks with all kind of techniques, and you may use the leftover from a FQ used in one block as a patch in another block.
Plus each month we will have optional blocks, so I cannot really make a sensible calculation of the fabric you will need to make your OWN custom quilt.

Go with the flow, use something you have and add to it as you go along!
Use this as the PERFECT excuse to make few extra trips to your favorite fabric store ;)

As a general guidance I can tell you that:
  1. each block is 12.5'' unfinished. So the amount of fabric needed in a single block is quite limited. You will probably be fine with two FQ and few extra scraps for the extra colors in each block. Remember that the left over from a FQ used in one block can make the scraps you need for another block! :)
  2. each pattern will contain the specific fabric requirement for each block. So if you are really really interested in making a fully super matching quilt (no judgments here :) ), you can make one block a month with fabric that you don't like, test the blocks, accumulate the free patterns, and at the end of the year do the math and have the exact fabric requirements for the quilt you want!
  3. each month I will share different sashing options. Those will include the fabric requirements for that sashing option, so again, you can just wait and see!
Basically, what I would do is to pick a fat quarter bundle of 10 or 20 pieces that you like, pick one yard of "constant" that you can use here and there in each block (to make it all coherent) and you are all set!!
Then once you see the sashing option that you like, go to the fabric store and find your sashing, binding and backing fabric! :)

To help you prepare a color palette for the quilt, I put together a coloring page and a swatches pages that you can use during the QAL as a guide.
Please remember that these are just one option block for each month... the additional secret ones will be revealed as the months go by ;)

Next week we are going to start with the first block of the QAL (on Jan 2nd)!  I am so excited!!!!

Until next week,
Happy Stitching!!
Alida (TweLoQ)






Remember: all the details about the series are collected in the QAL web page.



I received many comments about the 2016 QAL, both during the year and in my closing survey.

Some comments were kind and supportive.
Some comments were a little hurtful.
Some comments were surprising.
Some comments made me think I missed a mark.
Some comments made think I didn't explain my process or intentions properly.
Some comments were enthusiastic and positive.

Since everybody is different, I thought I would interview myself to clarify things that came up and my reasons behind my choices.

We don't have to agree on things to be able to enjoy an event together... but it is always nice to understand the motivation and reasons behind things that we don't agree on (at least that's what I think).
As you will see, most of the answers refer back to trying to keep my sanity or my happiness, so those are personal choices :)

I will refer back to this post whenever someone wants to know about the rules of the QAL so it is a long post... but it's good for future reference!! :)

1. Why do I post on the first Monday of the month? Can we do from the 1st to the last day of each month instead?

I post on the first Monday of the month to keep my sanity.
This is not my full time job, I have a full time job, week days, 9-5 (kind of).
I want to be able to make last time adjustments and changes to the patterns and posts before their release. This is why it has to happen on Monday, after a weekend.
I always share the calendar at the beginning of the QAL and I send reminders all the time, so it shouldn't be that hard to keep up with this choice instead of the 1st of the month.


2. Why do you need to see a picture of the block? Can you just send me the patterns? I don't want to share my work.

I want to see your block to keep my happiness.
While I respect people that do not want to share their work (and while I understand technical difficulties, no blogs, etc) for my first year of quilting/designing I shared patterns for free, no strings attached. I had hundreds patterns, some downloaded more than 8000 times (I am tracking clicks) and out of these downloads I maybe received 10-15 emails with pictures or thank you note. While I know that many just download patterns and stitch them up years and years later, I have seen pictures of my blocks on blogs, with no mention of my name or links. That makes me sad. This is not my job, but still it is my creativity that made those blocks possible and a little note is all I asked. So this is why I basically enforce a "thank you" note. Well, you don't even have to say thank you, just sending me a picture attached to an empty email would do just fine. But it's good to have some personal interactions with people that wants and use my patterns. I am a person too, so a little human interaction is appreciated!


3. Why do we need a deadline? Can't we just stitch the project at our own pace? Can we get a pass if we miss a deadline?

I need to have strict deadlines to keep my sanity.
Again, as mentioned before I am a single person, doing everything. From writing up posts, to designing the quilt, from writing up patterns, to testing them, from contacting sponsors for prizes to helping out people to link up their projects on the blog. Oh, did I mention that I have a job, and a life too? :) So keeping track of who is posting what and where is already pretty hard. Adding on top of that "time out" or exceptions is really too much to handle. If this event was run by a team of people, I may think of doing it, but considering that is just me, I cannot physically handle more than I currently do.


4. I don't like the theme you picked or your design for one of the months. Can you do something more traditional / modern / whimsical/ improv? :)

I need to follow my own design style to keep my happiness.
I don't follow what it is currently trending, I don't know what most people like or prefer. I usually have an idea and go with that! I don't even know exactly where the next design is going to take me. I just know that it will contain multiple techniques (because that's what I like to do) and mixed ideas and approaches to quilting/sewing. If you don't like one part of my designs, you are more than welcome to make changes to the patterns!!! As long as I see that you took something from my original design/idea, I am more than happy to see how you change it to fit your own needs!


5. You had giveaways each month. Who was included? Why did you choose to use random drawings from all the newest entries each month, even if they were not the latest block? Why did you only use the linky for the drawing?

I used random drawings between two numbers to keep my sanity.
Each month, if you follow along, you would have one block to post. However if you want to make an extra block for the previous month, you can share that for an extra entry. Or if you join in March and you make three blocks in one month, each would cound as a different entry if you post three pictures, in this way I don't penalize people that join later.
No matter if you agree on these choices, please remember that it takes a lot of time and effort (from my side) to get in touch with sponsors and convince them to offer you prizes. There is nothing it for me. I don't have affiliate links, I very rarely get extra goodies for that. I even have to pay for the postage to send some prizes out to you (internationally too, I don't mind). Making all these efforts and getting people comments about how upset they are that this or that got in the drawing is very sad.
From 2017 QAL I will have the clause that I am reserving the right to remove entries from the linky if not compliant (I never had to do this, but it's good to write it, because we never know). I will also add that I am reserving the right to change the rules of the linky and of the QAL at any time. If you are uncomfortable with it, you can drop out at any time. Again I think I am making decision to be fair and kind. If others interpret it in any other way, it is not my problem.  
I am trying to do my best, but (again) this is not my job, I don't get paid (see next answer), I have a life, health, job, issues, so I cannot guarantee that the patterns will be perfect or all posted on time. I can assure you I am doing my absolute best. I cannot promise you more than that


6. Why do I have to pay for the pattern that I miss? They are too expensive**! 
(** for the 2016 QAL a 15-ish pages pattern with block instructions, assembly instructions for a placemat or for a zipper pouch option was $ 3.95...)

While I understand that some people cannot afford to buy patterns, there must be an incentive for people to follow along, and the incentive is not to have to pay some fee for a pattern later. My patterns always contain step by step instructions, schemas, comments, tips, etc etc and they take a lot of time to put together (again, just a single woman operation here). If you don't think that deserves a Tall Chestnut Praline Latte I respect that. However most of the people that said that my patterns were expensive are comfortable buying designer fabric, books from famous quilty people, fancy notion tools, etc. So I think that the issue they have is not about money in specific, but about investing to support me in specific... again I totally respect that, but I think there is value in my artistic view, my time and my skills in both designing and creating the patterns... I think my effort is worth a Latte!
FYI last year I sold 8 patterns from my QAL, this didn't even cover the fee I am paying to keep the linky active, not to mention all the postage to send out giveaway prizes. I am totally ok losing money on this effort because I value the community building more than the actual income from this that is my hobby... however I wanted to share this information because the effort that I ask you about keeping up with the QAL and sharing your blocks pictures seems to me a fair request if you don't want to pay for the pattern!


7. What if I find a mistake in your instructions? Didn't you test it? Can you do a better job proofreading the patterns?

Well, I am a single person doing all the steps, from designing to writing to testing to posting to advertising to writing email reminders to sending out patterns to linking up pictures... and as I mentioned before this is not my job...  I do my best to write clear instructions. I am ALWAYS one email away and happy to clarify or help in any way. More than that, I cannot really do, sorry!


If you have more questions or comments, please don't hesitate to comment below! I will get back to you!

I will share the fabric suggestions on Monday (Dec 26th)!
I wish you happy holidays!!

Until next week,
Happy Stitching!!
Alida (TweLoQ)







Remember: all the details about the series are collected in the QAL web page.


How exciting to be able to share more information about sponsors and QAL rules!!

If you missed last week post (with the reveal of the final project and some cute stickers for your planner) visit the Growing Up QAL page! You will find all the details there!
I recommend you to subscribe to the QAL announcements via email, so you don't miss out on future posts! You find the subscription form on the same QAL page.

And now for our SPONSORS...
(prizes that I will schedule for different months of the QAL. There may be some extras too :) )

Mad About Patchwork - $40 gift cards!!

Northcott - a fat quarter bundle of the featured palette!!!

Fat Quarter Shop - $25 gift certificates!!


Aurifil - 6 small spools designer collections!!!

Green Fairy Quilts - $25 gift voucher!!!


Now let's get down to some details.

RULES: yes, I know, these are the least fun part of the QAL, but we need rules, so please read them carefully! If you have questions you can always comment on a post and if you leave your contact I will get back to you with an answer!! :)
  1. I will share one pattern a month for 11 months, each pattern will contain multiple blocks with the same sewing technique.
  2. Each pattern will be shared for free to people that follow along: this means that if you don't make ONE block from the pattern of the current month, you won't receive the next month pattern for free.
  3. All patterns will be available for sale in my shop for a small fee (less than a Tall Chestnut Praline Latte :) ).
  4. Late comers are welcome, but they will have to purchase any patterns they have missed. Late comers will have to email me to get their first pattern (the current month one) for free. 
  5. Please do not distribute my patterns without written consent.
  6. Each block/pattern will feature a different technique (bargello, foundation paper piecing, english paper piecing, applique, ...) and the patterns come with step by step tutorials on how to make the each block.
  7. Each week I will share tips and ideas on how to sash the entire quilt, links and inspirations on other people that use the technique to make beautiful quilts, and much more. These posts will be shared here on this blog and will remain free forever.
So, the main rule for the QAL is that you need to share a picture of one of the blocks before the next month pattern is released. The picture should be shared by 11:59 pm EST the day before the next month patterns goes live (for the specific dates, please refer to the QAL schedule shared in the previous post).
Note that you won't have to complete any sashing or anything else except one version of one of the blocks: the blocks are fairly easy so it's not that hard to follow along, I promise!

But where can you share your wonderful and inspiring blocks?

A picture of the completed block can be shared in any of the following places:
  • (preferred) I host a link party here! I have a blog post dedicated to the link party with instructions on how link either blog posts, FB pictures or Instagram pictures!
  • send me a picture directly via email (my email is in all my patterns)
  • post a picture in the AlidaTweloqDesigns FB group
  • post a picture in the FlickR group

** VERY IMPORTANT **
If you only post your block on our FB group or on Flickr, you NEED to send me an email notification about the submission, because I need your email address to send you the next month pattern. While I can get that information automatically from the link party, I cannot have that from FB or Flickr. It is YOUR responsibility to reach out to me, as I cannot hunt down your email address.

** EXTREMELY IMPORTANT **
I am only human! :)
At any point during the QAL, if you feel that you should have got the pattern but I didn't send it to you, just send me an email and remind me where you shared your block. I will do my best to keep track of who is sharing what, but I am only human, so please be patient!


So are you excited about this QAL?
I surely am!! Grab my button and share the love (button on the side bar)!
The more people join in, the more fun it will be!!

Until next week,
Happy Stitching!!
Alida (TweLoQ)





Remember: all the details about the series are collected in the QAL web page.

How exciting to be able to share the full layout of the quilt!!

This post contains also the planned schedule, and a pdf with multiple small buttons that you can print on address label sticker paper and use in your personal planner as reminders! :)

Three notes before showing off the quilt and technique I will feature in 2017:
  1. this post does NOT contain fabric requirements or discussions on colors options.
    That information will be shared on December 26th;
  2. I will show you the main basic layout (which contains 12 blocks and plain sashing) however, as part of the QAL, each of the 11 months will have at least one ADDITIONAL block made with the same technique, so you may swap in or out blocks as you like.
    The additional variations of the blocks are not included in this post because they are a surprise for people that participate! :) They are going to be revealed as the months go by. It's a way to have a little bit of mystery but not being completely in the dark: the blocks that are not shared will be very similar to the ones that you see below (just with some additional twists, variation in the color placement, number of pieces, etc);
  3. each month I will feature a completely different sashing option. Each of the posts featuring the sashing variations will include instructions to sash the entire 12 blocks quilt, and I will include fabric requirement for that sashing style. Each sashing option will make the quilt a different finished size, but all these information will be included with the monthly instructions.
So remember, what you see below is just ONE way you can put together the final quilt for the QAL.
I am excited to see which way YOU will choose at the end of 2017!!

(left) blocks from the QAL, (right) schedule and techniques

Each block finishes at 12 inches and the simple 3'' sashing above would make the quilt 48''x63''.

The color palette that I picked is a fantastic mix of Artisan Spirit Shimmer and Toscana, by Northcott!!

I wanted to use jewel tones because those lines are so saturated and beautiful!
I added some interesting prints because the shimmer will give a wonderful texture, but the waves will give additional movement to the blocks.
If you want to use the same palette, you find the code in the image below!


All the QAL posts will be shared on MONDAYS through the year.

This is the specific schedule:

JANUARY
- 2: Applique Silhouette
- 9: linky
- 16: sashing ideas
- 23: inspirations and reminders
- 30: inspirations and reminders

FEBRUARY:
- 6: Traditional Piecing
- 13: linky
- 20: sashing ideas
- 27: inspirations and reminders

MARCH:
- 6: Curved Piecing
- 13: linky
- 20: sashing ideas
- 27: inspirations and reminders

APRIL:
- 3: Embroidery Mandala
- 10: linky
- 17: sashing ideas
- 24: inspirations and reminders

MAY:
- 1: Improv Piecing
- 8: linky
- 15: sashing ideas
- 22: inspirations and reminders
- 29: inspirations and reminders

JUNE:
- 5: Dear Jane-style triangles
- 12: linky
- 19: sashing ideas
- 26: inspirations and reminders

JULY:
- 3: English Paper Piecing
- 10: linky
- 17: sashing ideas
- 29: inspirations and reminders
- 31: inspirations and reminders

AUGUST:
- 7: Bargello
- 14: linky
- 21: sashing ideas
- 28: inspirations and reminders

SEPTEMBER:
- 4: Stained Glass Applique
- 11: linky
- 18: sashing ideas
- 25: inspirations and reminders

OCTOBER:
- 2: Foundation Paper Piecing
- 9: linky
- 16: sashing ideas
- 23: inspirations and reminders
- 30: inspirations and reminders

NOVEMBER:
- 6: New York Beauty
- 13: linky
- 20: sashing ideas
- 27: inspirations and reminders

---
And a little bonus: if you have a planner or calendar and you want to keep track of when the next block is out, you can print out these stickers on standard address label pages to keep you organized!
I included two stickers for each month, so you can even plan when to make the second variation of each block! :) Just print them, cut them up and stick them on!! :)

1.5'' button stickers, printed on 8.5''x11'' shipping labels (with my Quilter's Planner)

---
NEXT WEEK, on December 19th I will share the SPONSORS of the events... we will have fantastic giveaways for people following along.

On December 26th I will share more info about fabric suggestions and other details about how the QAL will work.

AND...

On January 2nd the QAL will officially start!!

Patterns will be sent out via email, so if you don't want to miss out on reminders and other news, subscribe to the event mailing list by leaving your email address in the QAL web page!

So are you excited about this QAL?
I surely am!! Grab my button and share the love (button on the side bar)!
The more people join in, the more fun it will be!!

Until next week,
Happy Stitching!!
Alida (TweLoQ)





Remember: all the details about the series are collected in the QAL web page.


Are you getting excited for the new year?

Do you want to participate in a fun Quilt Along that will run (monthly) in 2017?

Do you want to learn tips and tricks about different sewing techniques, with step-by-step instructions and GROW your skillset?

Do you want to get 11 different sashing ideas to create a layout that suits your taste and needs?

JOIN ME for 2017 QAL


The button above shows only few of the blocks that we will put together over the year. :)
And you can get just a taste of the fantastic color palette that I put together thanks to one of our sponsors, Northcott!!


NEXT WEEK (December 12th) I will share the full layout and the complete schedule.
You will get to know more about the color palette I picked for my quilt (Artisan Spirit Shimmer and Toscana). 

On December 19th I will share the SPONSORS of the events... we will have fantastic giveaways for people following along.

On December 26th I will share more info about fabric suggestions and other details about how the QAL will work.

AND...

On January 2nd the QAL will officially start!!

Patterns will be sent out via email, so if you don't want to miss out on reminders and other news, subscribe to the event mailing list by leaving your email address below!




So are you excited about this QAL?
I surely am!! Grab my button and share the love (button on the side bar)!
The more people join in, the more fun it will be!!

Until next week,
Happy Stitching!!
Alida (TweLoQ)






Remember: all the details about the series are collected in the QAL web page.






Here is what Mr. Random decided:

From left to right, winner of prizes 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7

Winner 1: Lana! Fat Quarter Shop: $100 gift certificate for a super lucky winner! 

Winner 2: Judy! Aurifil: a box of (12 Large Spools) 50wt thread, Festive Collection (non PO shipping address, international winners are welcome)!
Winner 3: Sally! Mad About Patchwork: $25 gift certificate!

Winner 4: Sandra! Green Fairy Quilts: $25 gift voucher 

Winner 5: Beth! package 1 from me, mailed anywhere in the world! 
This includes a Free Motion Quilting cd (by Leah Day), the Binding tool and a pattern!

Winner 6: Katrin! package 2 from me, mailed anywhere in the world!
This includes a Triangle Square up Ruler and two patterns!

Winner 7: Vivian! package 3 from me, mailed anywhere in the world!
This includes a Stash and Dash pattern with finishing kit (byAnnie). The finishing kit contains all you need to make the project (except from the fabric). My package includes also two more patterns!




Congratulations!! I already sent you the confirmation emails, already contacted the sponsors and your prizes should be headed to you very soon!! 

For all the ones that didn't win: congratulations anyway!
You followed along and completed an AMAZING group of fun quilt blocks!! Very inspiring!!!!

I am working on next year's QAL.
I will share more details at the beginning of December!
I hope you will join me for another year of learning new techniques and making a great quilt!