Aurifil DOM March 2020 Block

I am proud to be one of the Aurifil 2020 Designers of the Month for March 2020.  Each month, a DOM designer will publish a block pattern inspired by the colors of Italy!     This post describes how I designed the block.  It also includes a link to a video tutorial showing how I actually pieced the block using fusible applique.  (Scroll down in this post for that link or go to my YouTube Channel.)

My Aurifil March 2020 Block is live!  It is inspired by the Dolomites Region of Italy.

Of course, at the time of this writing, Italy is facing serious challenges due to the Covid-19 outbreak.  My heart is with the people of Italy and the many other countries around the world dealing with this health challenge. 

My final Dolomites block

Each month, an Aurifil Designer will publish a block pattern inspired by the colors of Italy!  There will be challenges and giveaways on the Aurifil blog– click here to learn more about that!

Creating the Dolomites Block Pattern in EQ8

I used EQ8 to design the block.  I had several ‘false starts’ and experiments.  EQ8 makes it so easy to play with ideas and save each version along the way.  For me, this is much faster than using graph paper when I’m designing modern blocks and full quilts.  My big breakthrough was when I realized that mountains are triangles and that I could make an abstract modern block evoking snow capped mountains.

Here are a few of the draft versions–I was working out design as well as construction ideas.  I started out with the idea of making a foundation pieced block.

One of my first efforts. This is very abstract and doesn’t say mountains at all. I do like some of the shapes and may return to this someday.

 

Very steep mountains. I played with this quite a bit. But, there’s one big problem with this block. The mountain tops came right up to the top edge of the block. This makes it a bit harder to make without losing those sharp tips. I made several versions like this before it hit me that I needed sky above the mountain tops.

 

Getting closer. By this time, I realized that I wanted a lake below the meadows. I had also decided to use fusible applique as the piecing technique.

I redrew the block so that the sky was above the mountain tops.  I added snow caps for interest.  I decided to make my sample block using fusible applique.

12-1/2″ block color layout

 

If you want to watch an additional tutorial on fusible applique, visit The Crafty Gemini channel on YouTube — How to do Fusible Applique or Raw Edge Applique Tutorial.

Aurifil DOM Posting by Pat Sloan

Here is the LINK to the blog posting by Pat Sloan, our wonderful host of this event.  Be sure to visit to get information about all of the GiveAways.

By the way, the quilt showing in this image is one of my AfroModerne quilts.  I don’t have a pattern or tutorial for it yet but follow my blog or subscribe to my newsletter to find out when I might release this pattern or tutorial.  It is a combination of improvisation and large pattern piecing.

Aurifil DOM Dolomites Pattern Downloads

Fusible Applique and Paper Piecing

My pattern has full size templates and includes tips for using fusible applique.  The Pattern Addendum has full sized templates for paper piecing the block.

Download the Fusible Applique Pattern here. CL Shaw Dolomites v 2-6-2020 A

Download the Paper Piecing Addendum here.  Final Paper Piecing Pattern Addendum

Fusible Applique:  A Few Words About Interfacing and Fusing

In the pattern, you will notice that I use a fusible nonwoven interfacing as the ‘base’ of the block.  A couple of tips that I go into in more detail in the video:

  • Fusible is only on ONE side of the interfacing. Make sure you have this side UP facing you.  Having fusible on the interfacing AND on the fabric gives you a double bond.  This is great if you plan on washing the quilt.
  • Always use parchment paper when you fuse.  Parchment paper is cheap and you buy it on the roll in the grocery aisle at a dollar store or grocery store.  Buy a name brand–it will perform better.  This is NOT freezer paperYou cannot use freezer paper for this project.

Cleaning Fusible off of Your Iron–CHEAP and Easy

Mistakes happen!  If you get fusible glue on your iron, there are cheap easy ways to CLEAN your iron without lots of fumes.

I do NOT buy the commercial ‘iron cleaner’ products.  The fumes are very toxic and you don’t need it.

Here are two ways that work for me when I need to clean my iron:

Unscented Dryer sheets.  With a warm iron, iron over an unscented dryer sheet.  If the fusible isn’t too thick, this will often clean it right off.  I might have to iron over several sheets. Don’t make the iron too hot–just warm to the touch.  I use Bounce™ unscented sheets but generic dryer sheets work fine–just make sure they are unscented.  Heating the perfumes in scented sheets might not be as healthy in my opinion.

 

 

Windex cleaner and an old washcloth cleaned the burned on fusible off my iron.  Relatively little fumes or scent.

Multipurpose Cleaning Spray. I ended up with a rather thick heavy burned on area of fusible on my iron.  I left the iron overnight before I realized what had happened.  The dryer sheets didn’t work to clean it the next day.  So, I pulled out my general spray cleaner and an old cotton washcloth.  I wet the cloth and swiped it across the COLD iron.  I wanted to dampen the area where I could see the burned on fusible.  I then put the iron down on the wet cloth and let it sit for a few minutes.  After a few minutes, I wiped the iron vigorously with the washcloth.  Also, I noticed that I could peel away the fusible with my fingernail–it peeled away easily.  After a few minutes of work, the  iron was totally clean again.  Actually, I should probably clean my iron even when I’m not using fusible–starch, BestPress™ and the sizing on fabric all leave a residue.

Link to My Interview and Aurifil Giveaways

Here is the link to read my Interview with Pat Sloan on the Aurifil Blog.  LINK to the blog posting by Pat Sloan

Tutorial Video: Fusible Applique Block

This is the original bundle of Robert Kaufman linen and solid cotton fabrics that I used for the mountains and meadows.   (In the video, you will see some other green fabrics that I ultimately decided not to use.)  I added a lightly printed white fabric for the snowcaps.  I used a solid blue and a watercolor looking batik for the lake areas.

And, here is my video tutorial showing you how I made this fun block!

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30 Responses to Aurifil DOM March 2020 Block

  1. pam March 15, 2020 at 12:16 pm #

    I use the dryer but occasionally, as happened to you, I need something stronger to clean my iron.
    I use Mr Clean sponges. They work great and don’t hurt my iron

    • Carole Lyles Shaw March 16, 2020 at 8:56 am #

      That’s another great tip. I just saw that the sponges come in sheets too. I’ll have to try them.

  2. Jane March 15, 2020 at 12:20 pm #

    Beautiful ideas!!!

  3. Diane March 15, 2020 at 12:23 pm #

    Love your block! Thanks for posting your design process…always interesting to see how someone works through their design. And thanks for the tips as well.

    • Carole Lyles Shaw March 16, 2020 at 8:55 am #

      You are welcome. I’m going to do more tutorials like that. And, of course, my online courses will show lots of in process decision making. Stay tuned!

  4. kaywelch March 15, 2020 at 1:15 pm #

    Your block is a nice geometric interpretation of the Dolomites. Also thanks for the tips of cleaning our irons with dryer sheets.

  5. DawnyK March 15, 2020 at 1:29 pm #

    This block is lovely! Thank you so much for sharing your different versions. Thanks for the iron cleaning tips also!!!

    • Carole Lyles Shaw March 16, 2020 at 8:53 am #

      Thanks very much. Cleaning the iron is so important when you use fusibles.

  6. Adrienne March 15, 2020 at 5:12 pm #

    I love your work, Carole. I’ve never seen it before. it’s bright, happy, and different.

  7. Bernadette Izod March 15, 2020 at 6:26 pm #

    Thank you Carol, I enjoyed listening to your tutorial.

  8. Karla March 16, 2020 at 12:36 am #

    Excellent tutorial! Carole, you have such a soothing voice for the video. I’m another O’s fan from Maryland!
    Karla
    Burtonsville, Maryland

    • Carole Lyles Shaw March 16, 2020 at 8:51 am #

      Thanks Karla! We went to an Orioles Spring Training game a few weeks ago. Perfect weather for a ball game. And they won!

  9. Barbara Dull March 16, 2020 at 5:11 am #

    Love love love your block Carole! Green is my favorite color and I think I will try the paper pieced version

    • Carole Lyles Shaw March 16, 2020 at 8:50 am #

      Thanks so much Barbara! It was fun to make. Let me know how the paper piecing works.

  10. Juanda March 16, 2020 at 12:49 pm #

    I’m so happy you selected mountains! They are beautiful! Can’t wait to try the paper pieced version of the block!

  11. Lenore March 16, 2020 at 3:29 pm #

    What a beautiful block Carole. I am a mountain lover living in the flatlands, so it really appeals to me. And I love your choice of colors and the design reads majestic mountains. Thanks for the tutorial!

  12. Bonnie Booy March 16, 2020 at 6:06 pm #

    Congratulations! Your block is awesome!

  13. Karen March 18, 2020 at 8:22 am #

    Thanks so much for the tutorial I’ve watched it twice very very helpful

    • Carole Lyles Shaw March 18, 2020 at 9:57 am #

      Thanks Karen! I’m glad that it was helpful. Have fun using the techniques.

  14. Kathleen McCormickk March 18, 2020 at 4:35 pm #

    Love your block, Carol. It is such a fun but different interpretation of mountains with your lovely modern twist!

  15. Carole Lyles Shaw March 16, 2020 at 8:54 am #

    Thanks!

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