"She seeks wool & flax, And works willingly with her hands" ~ Proverbs 31:13

January 18, 2016

Shenandoah Valley Botanical Album Quilt {Sew Along Month 3 - Mountain Laurel Block}

I can't believe we're already on month four of the sew along and I totally missed blogging about about our Month 3 December block - the Mountain Laurel, and I have so much I want to share with you.  I absolutely adore this block, especially the little heart shaped flowers.
They are just so dainty and sweet.  

photo credit - Pamela Wynfield
So far on all the blocks I've used the back basting method for preparing all of my applique pieces. I'm using the Wash-Away Applique paper from C&T Publishing as my base, ironing it onto the wrong side of the fabric and then using water soluble fabric glue to temporarily baste the seam allowance down until I hand stitch it in place.

In the past when I've needed to line up pieces on an applique block I've used the window. Except that I've found the window to be really inconvenient when I'm working with lots of little pieces.  I've also used my clear acrylic sewing machine extension table with a light under it which works great when I'm in my sewing room. But I wanted to hang out with my hubby in the living room watching Andy Griffith or The Twilight Zone and needed a solution that was easy to transport. Sitting right beside me was my clear Art Bin with all the pieces for this Sew Along....light bulb moment!!

photo credit - Pamela Wynfield

Why not use the flashlight app on my phone!?! I could put the phone inside (above photo) the bin and tape the pattern on top of the bin (photo below).  

photo credit - Pamela Wynfield
After finding the center of my fabric block, by folding it in half twice,  I used a water soluble marking pin to mark the center of the fabric.

photo credit - Pamela Wynfield

Then I lined up the center of the fabric with the asterisk marking the center of the pattern and pinned the fabric to the pattern.  Then I could move the light inside the box to see the area I wanted to work on and glue the pieces in place.  

photo credit - Pamela Wynfield

I glued 3-4 pieces to the background fabric at a time, starting with the lowest layers.

I use this same light box method when tracing the shapes onto the Wash-Away paper.  First I number the pieces on the pattern in the order I need to stitch them in place. Then I flip the pattern over and write all the numbers on the back of the pattern.  After rewriting the numbers on the back I leave the pattern facing backside up and tape it to the box and place my light inside the box.  I place a sheet of Wash-Away paper with the rough side (glue side) down so that I can trace the pieces onto the smooth side of the paper. By tracing from the backside of the pattern I've reversed the pattern so that when the paper is ironed to the wrong side of the fabric all the pieces are correct. Once all the pieces are traced onto the Wash-Away paper I remove the pattern from the box and flip it over and re-tape it in place so that the right side of the pattern is now facing up.

photo credit - Pamela Wynfield

Block Details:
Background fabric: Designer Essential Solids by Free Spirit Fabrics in Orchid
Flowers: Elizabeth - Astraea in Tart by Tula Pink for Free Spirit Fabrics
Leaves: True Colors - Daisy Buds in Grass by Tula Pink for Free Spirit Fabrics
Stem: Elizabeth - Bats in the Belfry by Tula Pink for Free Spirit Fabrics
Started with a 17-1/2" background square trimmed to 16-1/2" square.
Thread: 50wt. Aurifil

Pop on over to the SVBAQ - Sew Along blog HERE to see all that's happening with the Sew Along. It's not too late to join in the fun, while you're there you can pick up the pattern for the quilt and join in the fun. All the proceeds from your pattern purchase benefit the Virginia Quilt Museum.

Thank you for stopping by and sharing in my quilting journey
God Bless & Happy Quilting!


  1. I am really liking your version of SVBAQ. The fabrics and different color backgrounds are wonderful.

  2. Such a beautiful version of this quilt!
    I love your light box tip too...thanks so much for sharing it!


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