In January Moda Fabrics hosted a quilt along through instagram, and I decided to jump in. Let me show you how I made my own versions of the Moda Love Charm Quilt Pattern.
What drew me to the quilt along is that the design featured a type of large block pattern that I’ve been wanting to make for years, but was intimidated to try. I decided it was time to face the fear of failure and jump in. The Moda Love Charm Quilt Pattern is a great way to piece a pattern based on a Carpenter’s star but with a twist.
Here I am holding the first version of my Moda Love Charm Quilt. I had a beautiful charm pack (affiliate link) in my stash, and since this pattern is designed around using a charm pack, it was a great way to put it to use.
I downloaded the free pattern on the Fat Quarter Shop (affiliate link) website, printed it out, and got busy.
The first thing that threw me for a loop was their method of construction which was to piece the pattern by long rows. 😳 There are 8 blocks across and 8 blocks down in this pattern and keeping everything turned the right way and all the points in line following that method felt completely over whelming.
I did what I always do, and I looked for simpler patterns within the over all design.
I found a series of 4 patches and once I realized that, the over all block was really simple to piece. It boiled down to two basic blocks: the 4 patch and a Diamond in a square constructed of hst units.
The first step was to piece the following blocks:
- 4 Four patch units with the background square in a specific location as indicated in the pattern
- 4 Diamonds in a square blocks made with hst units, background fabric in the center
- 1 Diamond in a square block with the print in the center
Once these blocks were pieced, I laid them out on my sewing table to decide where to place each one.
At this point, the central part of the Moda Love Quilt Pattern goes together much like a 9 patch.
I sewed each of the 3 rows together first and then pieced each row to the center row to complete construction. There are a LOT of points to maintain in this pattern so piecing this way in terms of block units to one another worked easier for me in terms of keeping the design organized and the points maintained. I personally find sewing long skinny rows of blocks to be challenging, so if I can find a way to break the pattern down into smaller components, I will always do that.
At this point, I put together the rest of the block like I would put on a border and pieced the top and bottom or the North/South orientation first. Then I pieced on the East/West strip.
At this point, the pattern directs you to make the quilt sandwich and quilt as desired.
This would mean the design would butt up to the quilt binding in the final step, and I felt like there were so many points to preserve that it would make this very difficult to finish, so I cut 1.5″ strips and pieced them on like a border to give me the breathing room I needed in the final step. I used the background fabric for this thin border.
Now it was time to set up my quilt sandwich and get to quilting!
I decided on using a lattice pattern or a standard diamond shaped pattern.
It’s relatively easy to do and it always looks good. Let me show you how I set everything up.
- First of all, I made the quilt sandwich with special safety pins (affiliate link) like I always do.
- Then I used my 2.5″ x 24.5″ Creative Grids ruler with my Clover Point Turner (affiliate link) to mark lines. Using the “sharp” edge on the blunt side of the point turner is what I use to make my indentations in the quilt.
- I followed the edge of my ruler, but instead of cutting, I marked lines.
Quilting your Moda Love Charm quilt pattern, the ACTUAL quilting, is a very personal choice.
There are as many ways to do the final quilting as there are fabrics in online fabric shops. This means there are A LOT of ways to do this step. I use small, domestic sewing machines so I keep it simple and do straight line quilting methods. I’ve come to love the forgiving nature and the fast finish that can be achieved from sewing criss cross lines.
There are many different ways to mark your lines to achieve a straighter finish, but I personally love this method of marking by indentation. It gave me enough of a visual queue to keep my lines straight and I didn’t have any chalk to clean up later or wind up hoping the fabric marker did indeed fade later.
Tips for your best Moda Love Quilt:
- Use Darker prints for the star parts.
- Use Low Volume (Light) prints for your background.
- Very high contrast between the background and the star shape will create a well defined star.
- If using charm squares (affiliate link) to create the 4.5″ blocks, sewing a scant seam is critical. There’s barely anything left to trim down during squaring up, so accurate sewing and scant seams are extra important.
Not sure how to sew a scant seam? Check out this video tutorial!
The best advice I can give you regarding this quilt pattern is don’t be afraid.
It’s only fabric, and if you don’t get something quite right, there’s always a seam ripper around.
Split the design into smaller snippets and put those building blocks together. The design is a fun way to build confidence in constructing larger star blocks that look impressive. But if you can make an hst unit, you can make this pattern. Use this as an opportunity to play with color and maybe use a bold collection you otherwise would not have considered.
As you can see, the high contrast version on the right perfectly shows the star shape. The version I made with quilt left overs on the left is more subtle, but I like how the color pulls your eye around the design. I’m planning on hanging both of these in different rooms so I can continue to enjoy them.
I do hope this provides you with some inspiration and that it gives you enough confidence to try the pattern out for yourself. It’s well worth doing, and while I think completing it in one weekend is kind of a lot, finishing it within a week is reasonable and enjoyable.
The real benefit in a project like this is you get to engage in all aspects of quilt making, but on a smaller scale.
I love that because I can work on the aspects of the craft I find challenging (quilt binding anyone?) and I can enjoy the piecing and simple quilting. So grab that charm pack from stash you’ve been wondering what to do with, and Make your own Moda Love Quilt!