Christmas in July Round Up

Fabric stores are teeming with beautiful and festive Moda holiday fabric. Over the years our talented Chefs have whipped up some lovely holiday projects to help you get a jump start on Christmas sewing.

Click through to view the links to the recipes.

-Oda May


Jelly Roll Race Remix Quilt

Hello, Karin Vail from Cascade Quilts back again this month with yet another Christmas in July project!

2 Jelly Rolls (or 2 jelly roll race quilt tops – or a combo of the two!)  I used 24th and Pine by Basic Grey
2/3 yard for binding (or use leftovers for a scrappy binding)
1 yard inner border (cut into 8@ 4.5”WOF strips)
1 1/2  yards outer border (cut into 8@ 6.5”WOF strips)
5 yards backing

Probably most quilters have tried this at one point or another –  a ”Jelly Roll Race” (JRR) quilt top.  It works up fast for sure – but makes a rather ho-hum quilt.  I made one myself years ago, but it was not ever destined to be made into a quilt after I finished the top and didn’t love it.
So, WHAT do you do with a JRR quilt top that you love the fabric, but don’t love the design?  Rework it by adding yet another JRR top to the mix…..
Now, there are lots of JRR quilt tutorials out there, so I am not going to go into how to make those.  What I am going to explain is how I remade these two JRR tops into a beautiful quilt with MUCH more visual interest!  These JRR tops will each measure around 50”x64” to begin with.

Yes, I made TWO identical JRR tops, but you could certainly make two different tops and use this same technique.  It is similar to a ‘bargello’ technique.  If you did this, I would alternated between strips from the two JRR tops to get a uniform look throughout.
First, take one JRR top and fold it in half so that the top strip can be sewn to the bottom strip – so you make a JRR ‘tube’.  Think of it like a *giant* trip-around-the-world block setup.  From that tube, you will cut cross-section strips.   Here the seam has been sewn to make the tube and it’s again folded in half horizontally so I can do the subcutting.
In this quilt, I cut my strips 2.5” so that I have 2” squares in my final quilt, but you can certainly change it up and cut varying widths of strips!
For the first strip, take apart one seam between blocks.
The next strip, you will take apart the next seam up from the one you took apart on the first strip, and so on.
To make it easier to keep track and keep them in the right orientation (how they came off of the original JRR top), I cut only a few strip tubes at a time and sewed them a few at a time.
Match up your seams and sew the long verticle seams.
Where the fabrics change, you will get several almost-half square triangles.  Or, you might luck out and get a perfect HST in the mix too:
You should be able to get twenty 2.5” strips from each JRR ‘tube’, so with two ‘tubes’ you would be able to get a total width of 80” if you used it all.  But, since the length of the quilt is only 64” at this point, and I didn’t want an 80×64 quilt,  I decided to stop at 64” wide and add borders to enlarge it and have a balanced quilt.  I personally prefer a square quilt since you don’t have to worry which side is ‘up’ that way 🙂  If you are using 2 identical tops, cut 20 strips from one top, and 12 from the second.  If you are using 2 different JRR tops, then cut 16 strips from each JRR ‘tube’.
Now, take your 8@ 4.5”WOF strips and sew them into pairs to create 4 longer strips.  Measure your quilt top, cut border fabric to match, and sew the border on top and bottom.  Mine measured 64.5”.  Press, measure the length you will now need for the sides and cut your remaining border strips to length, and sew on left and right sides.  Mine measured 72.5”.
For your second border, take your 8@ 6.5” strips and sew them into pairs.  Again, measure your quilt top as per the first border.  My first measurement for the top/bottom was 72.5” and second for the sides was 84.5”.

A generous 84”x84” quilt!

Karin Vail
{Cascade Quilts}

Peppermint Swirl Christmas Tree Skirt

Happy Christmas in July! I’m Heather from Heather Kojan Quilts. I’m excited to share this tutorial for a super fun Peppermint Swirl Christmas Tree Skirt! Start now and you’ll have it done way before the holiday rush. (Tip: Make this in any fabric of your choosing to create a fun table topper for any season. Or, maybe a fun and unique baby quilt or play mat. Simply applique a center circle and you’re good to go!)

So, this is truly made in July, and nary a Christmas tree to be seen. So, here you have the perfect basketball hoop skirt!

Ready to get started?

12 Fat Quarters of Basic Grey’s 25th and Pine (4 green, 4 red and 4 white)
3 yards backing fabric
1/2 yard binding fabric

Batting, 54″ x 54″

Nine Degree Wedge Ruler

I’m using the fabulous 25th and Pine from Basic Grey. I love the feel of this fabric. So luxurious.

You’ll need 12 fat quarters to make your swirl: 4 green, 4 red, 4 white. 

Take each of your fat quarters and cut into strips, 2.5″ x 22″. You should get 7 strips from each fat quarter to yield 28 strips of each color.

Next we’re going to make strip sets. Following the chart below, we’ll make 9 unique strip sets. R=Red, G=Green, W=White. Use a 1/4″ seam allowance throughout this project.

Row 1
Row 2
Row 3
Row 4
Row 5
Row 6
Row 7
Row 8
Row 9

Sew your first strip set together, using the chart above. A finished strip set should measure 22″ wide and 18.5″ top to bottom.

After you sew your first strip set, lay out the next strip set beside the first. Try to avoid having the same fabrics next to each other. Label your strip sets 1-9 as you sew them. Press the odd numbered strip sets in one direction, and the even numbered strip sets in the opposite direction. After sewing all of the strip sets, you should have one leftover strip of each color. 

Now it’s time to cut your wedges.

You need to get 5 wedges from each strip set. Place the ruler so that the 22″ mark is aligned with the top edge of your strip set. Use your seam lines on your strip set and the lines on the ruler to make sure your ruler is placed correctly and everything is lined up straight. It’s helpful if you can place your cutting mat so that you can walk around it to make the cutting easier. Cut your first wedge. Re-position ruler at the top edge, and cut your second wedge. Repeat to make 5 wedges total. Stack the wedges (I clip them with a wonder clip) and label stack #1. You’ll end up with smaller “waste” wedges as you cut. Save these for creative play later!

Continue to cut your wedges from each strip set. Label and keep in order.

Find a nice open spot of “design floor”. Lay out your wedges in a circle, starting with one, continuing through nine, then repeating with one through nine and so on. Do you see the spiral happening? Cool, right? You’ll only need 40 wedges for this project. Again, set the remaining wedges aside for creative play (mug rugs? table runner?) After you have all 40 wedges laid out, check to make sure the spiral works and that nothing got out of order. (Your ending wedge will not create a continuous spiral with the first wedge.)

Let’s sew the spiral. I like to sew 8 wedges at a time. I pair the first 2, second 2, third 2 and fourth 2 by laying the right sides together. At my sewing machine, I sew the first pair, then 2nd, 3rd and 4th, chain stitching as I go. Because we did alternate pressing, the seams should nest together nicely. I then sew the first two pairs together, then the last 2 pairs together, and finally the 2 four wedge units together. Then I take this unit and return it to the spiral. Repeat for the reaming wedges. Once I have all 5 eight wedge units sewn, I check to make sure the spiral is continuous and nothing got out of order. Then I sew all the units together, including the seam where the end meets the beginning. I mark this seam with a pin.

Pretend there’s only 4 pairs of wedges above!
Back at the sewing machine, I do a little stay stitching around the inside and outside circle to keep the stitches from “popping”, about 1/8th inch from the edge. 
Cut your backing fabric into two pieces, 54″ in length x width of fabric. Trim selvages and seam the two pieces together. You’ll have a piece of fabric 54″ x 80″ (approximately). Trim to 54″ square. 
Layer your backing, batting and skirt top. Baste as preferred.
Time to quilt! I used my walking foot and did straight line quilting on each side of the seams. I started and stopped each line of quilting where wedge one and forty meet (where I placed that pin earlier.) Be sure to do an 1/8th of an inch stitch around the inner and outer circle edges as well. 
With your scissors, trim around the outer circle. Cut right down the seam where wedge one and wedge forty meet, then continue to cut the inner circle.

Make your bias binding. You’ll need approximately 240″ of bias binding. 1/2 yard will give you more that plenty! Lay out your 1/2 yard of fabric. Use the 45° line of your ruler to lop off the bottom left and top right corners of your fabric, approximately 10″ from the point. I do this so that I don’t have super short pieces of binding fabric. Keep the 45° angle going, and cut binding strips 2.5″ wide. If you want to make the optional ties, reserve two lengths, approximately 22″ long.

To join your strips, place two pieces together, matching the right angles.
Place right sides together. The strips will be at a right angle. Be sure to off set the corner by a 1/4 inch, as shown in the picture. Sew strips together with a 1/4″ seam. Continue to join all the strips until you have enough binding. Fold binding strip in half and press. Voila! Bias binding!
Optional ties: Take one piece of the bias binding strip approximately 20-22″ long. Fold in half length wise. Press. Unfold, then press so that each long edge meets the center “line” that you just pressed. Fold each short end under 1/4″ and press. Re-fold and press entire tie. Stitch along the long edge and short folded edges, close to the open edge. Cut into 2 lengths, approximately 10″ each. Repeat with second strip.
Pin ties in place with raw edges together, approximately 4″ from inner and outer circle. These will get sewn into the tree skirt as you sew on your binding.
Bind your quilt. Congratulations ~ your first Christmas finish of the year!

One Peppermint Swirl Christmas Tree Skirt, 45″ diameter.

Heather Kojan

A Very Merry Moda Christmas

We are having a party and you’re invited! Join us for an virtual party tonight – December 11 – starting at 7 pm CST.

Pin your recipes, crafts, quilt patterns, or anything else that is inspiring you this holiday season. Be sure to tag your pins and social media posts with #verymerrymodachristmas so we can all see them, too!

This is an online party so join us in your best holiday gear or your favorite jammies and meet us on the web. We are going to be giving out prizes every 15 minutes via Pinterest, Twitter, and Instagram so be sure to follow Moda Fabrics and the Moda Bake Shop so we can contact you if you’re a winner.

Check out our Very Merry Moda Christmas board to see what we are pinning during the party!

Elfin Sleeping Bag and Pillow

Hi everyone, it’s Chris Warnick from again with a simple project that is perfect for the holiday season, gifts for the grandkids, or a even a beginner project for teaching the kids to sew.

Do you have a small elfin creature who comes to visit you in the night?  Maybe just during the winter months?  Well then he or she is probably getting chilly right about now.  Have a heart and make the poor fella a sleeping bag with a comfy pillow.  It is a quick and easy project that can also be used to make placemats!  Let’s get started.

52 Moda Candy Mini-Charm Squares for the sleeping bag and pillow exterior – I used In From The Cold by Kate Spain (Note: I actually used scraps so I have more repetition than a Candy pack will provide.)

1 piece of backing fabric for the sleeping bag interior 12 1/2″ x 16 1/2″  (Note: my interior piece is pieced from two fabrics.)
1 piece of batting 12 1/2″ x 16 1/2″
Small handful of polyfil or some cotton balls for stuffing the pillow

Ric-rac, piping, ruffles, ribbon, buttons or any other trims desired to make your sleep sack “fancy”

To make the sleeping bag exterior, select 48 mini-charm squares and sew together into pairs.
Once in pairs, layout the mini-charms to create two panels, each 4 squares across and 6 squares down.  (Set aside the remaining two pairs for the pillow.)  These panels will be the front and back of your sleeping bag.

Sew the pairs together to form the two panels.

Sew the two panels together to make one big panel.  This is the sleeping bag exterior.

Next grab your batting and backing/interior piece.  Each should have the same measurements of your exterior panel (12.5″ x 16.5″ in my case).  Below is my exterior panel on top of my backing to check that they are the same size.

Place batting down first, then the exterior piece right-side up next, followed by the backing right-side down.  See photo below for clarification.  Basically, you are placing exterior and interior pieces right-sides together (RST) and then placing that pair on top of your batting.

Now sew around the entire rectangle leaving a 3″ gap for turning. I like using a “green for go” and “red for stop” pin to remind me to leave the gap:

Clip the corners to reduce bulk.  Flip the whole thing through the gap and poke out the corners with a chopstick or knitting needle.

Press into a pretty rectangle, paying special attention to making your gap nicely pressed.

Top stitch close to the edge around the entire rectangle.  This will automatically close the gap.

If you just want a great table mat, placemat, or very large mug rug, stop here!  Enjoy your finished item!  If you are making the sleeping bag, you’re almost done.

Quilt a stich line straight down the middle.  If this panel is an open book, you are quilting down the spine.  This helps stabilize the batting to keep it from bunching.  You can also quilt the entire panel if desired.

Now, close your “book” by folding the piece in half.  Begin sewing the two sides together about two squares down from the top.  Sew carefully since there are many layers.  Sew down to the corner and around to close the bottom.  Notice that I pinned the corner to keep it from shifting:
To tack the flap open, use a hand sewing stitch in the corner.  Be sure to sew just through one layer rather than sewing the bag closed in that spot.

Someone has his eye on this already.  It’s a little wide for him, but his plush friends might enjoy the extra elbow room. 

If your elfin friend wants a snugger bag, adapt the pattern to result in an exterior that is 3 squares across rather than 4.  That would look like this:

But wait, no one wants to rest their weary head on a cutting mat, do they?  Let’s make a pillow to go with the sleeping bag.  Grab the two pairs of squares left over from your original panel layout. 

Place these pairs right sides together and sew around the entire rectangle leaving a 1″ gap for turning.  Clip the corners and turn right-side out.  Stuff the pillow with polyfil by using very small bits to prevent lumps.

Pinch the gap closed and fit under the presserfoot.  Topstitch around pillow edges, naturally closing the gap.  You may need to shift the stuffing around to help get the edges of the pillow under the foot.

AHHHH, much better!  Sleep tight little elfin friend.
One doll-sized sleeping bag and pillow.  Hopefully your elfin friends won’t be caught sleeping on the job!
Have a wonderful holiday season, and be sure to share your Moda Bake Shop projects on the Flickr page!  If you have any questions or are looking for a quilt pattern for your human-sized friends, please come visit me at
Happy sewing!
Chris Warnick

Christmas Spools Quilt

It’s not even Halloween yet but that didn’t stop me from getting a jumpstart on Christmas sewing! This quilt is an easy project that will get you ready for the holidays in a hurry.

1 charm pack of In From The Cold by Kate Spain (spool centers)
1.5 yards Bella Solids in Paper Bag (spool tops and bottoms)
1.5 yards Bella Solids in Bleached White (surrounding spools)
1.5 yards Bella Solids in Bleached White (sashing and borders)
1/8 yard In From The Cold – Mint (center squares)
4 yards (backing)
1/2 yard In From The Cold – Marshmallow (binding)

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cutting instructions

for the top and bottom of spools

cut 21 2 ½” x wof strips

subcut each strip into 4 – 2½” x 9″ strips

you need 84

for the sides of spools

cut 11 – 2½” x wof strips

subcut each strip into 8 – 2 ½” x 5″ strips

you will need 84

for the corners of spools

cut 11 – 2½” x wof strips

subcut each strip into 16 – 2 ½” squares

you will need 168

for the corner stones

cut 2 – 2″ x wof

subcut both strips into 40 – 2″ squares

you will need 30

for sashing

cut 18 – 2″ x wof strips

subcut each strip into 4 – 2″ x 9″ strips

you will need 71

for binding

cut 7 – 2 ½” x wof

for backing
cut 2 –  72″ x wof pieces

**for border

cut 7 – 2″ x wof strips

measure the perimeter of the quilt top

firstsubcut 2 strips to that length (should be 59″)

sew top and bottom borders on

nextmeasure the sides and subcut 2 strips to that

length (should be 72″)

piecing instructions

for each spool block you will need : 
1 charm square
2 – 2½” x 9″ strips
2 – 2½ x 5″ strips 

4 – 2½” squares

1.  Draw a diagonal line on each of the 168 – 2½” squares


2.  With right sides together, pin 2½ ” squares to corners of the spool top and bottom strips, as pictured.

P { margin-bottom: 0.08in; }3.  Sew directly on the line, trim ¼” from seam, press out.  Repeat until all 84 strips are completed.
4.  Sew 2½” x 5″ strips on opposite side of each charm square, press  toward charm square.
5.  Pin spool top and bottom to center.
6.  Carefully sew top and bottom to the center, press toward center.

block should measure 9″ x 9″

Repeat as instructed for each block.  **To use less thread and time, I chain stitched all the center portions of the block, then the spool portions.

lay blocks out as you like
7.  Sew 35 – 2″ sashing to the right side of each block minus the far right row.  Press seams towards sashing.
8.  For horizontal sashing, sew 30 – 2″ corner stones to 2″ sashing strips. 
9.  Sew strips into rows consisting of 5 corner stone/sashing strips.
You will then sew the remaining 6 – 2″ sashing strips to the end of each row.
10.  Press corner stones out.  Pin each sashing strip to the bottom of the first 6 spool rows, sew together. 
11.  Pin rows together, sew.  Press seams towards sashing.  
12.  Sew sashing to the top and bottom, press out.  Sew sashing to sides, press out.

13.  Quilt, bind, and enjoy!  
Beautifully long arm quilted by Kathy Olkowski.

The Moda Bake Shop has a fabulous binding tutorial here.

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62″ x 72″ adorable Christmas spools quilt

Trish Poolson

Into the Woods Quilt

My name is Kymberly from Peas in a Pod Creations. I’m so excited to be making my debut on Moda today. I have a secret confession…I love winter. I think one of my favorite months is January when the chaos of the holidays has passed, the ground is blanketed in snow and the world is filled with a quite peace. As I was working on this quilt my husband suggested I make the inner section of the split rail block with my lights so that it looks like snowflakes. Suddenly this quilt contained everything I love about the season. I can’t wait to curl up with it and a good book on a snowy night this winter.

1 Jelly roll (For this quilt I used fabric from Kate Spain’s line In from the Cold)
1 yd green fabric (Juniper with white berries)
1 ½ yd blue fabric (Mint with snowflakes)
½ yd grey (Icicle)
4 yd backing (Mint with hot cocoa)

½ yd binding (Hearth with cookies)

Tree Blocks: 
make 32

Cut (5) 7” strips from green.  Cut strips into triangles with 9” base and point at 4.5”. (I lined my ruler up on 0 to 4.5” and then 4.5” to 9” and cut triangles as shown.)
Cut (8) 5” strips from blue. Cut each strip into 7.25” rectangles.  Keeping rectangles in pairs with wrong sides together cut rectangles in half diagonally. 

Sew blue triangle to side of green triangle. Press and repeat on other side of tree. (Your trees will look much better if you take time to press at this step.)
*Without going into complicated geometry and templates this was the best way I found to make these trees. Your edges will be a bit wonky, but this is okay. When the block is finished it gets squared up and will look great.

To create trunk cut left over blue into 2.5” x 4” strips. Cut grey into 1.5”x 2.5” pieces. Sew blue rectangles to each side of grey piece. Sew to bottom of tree and square up block to 8.5”.

Snowflake Blocks:
make 31

Divide jelly roll strips into lights and darks. (With In From the Cold I used the reds and greens as my darks and the whites, greys, and blues as my lights. I chose to remove the fabrics I used in the tree block.) Cut each jelly roll into two 18” strips.
Strip piece the lights and darks. Press towards the dark and cut into (4) 4.5” pieces. 

 Turn top piece so that the light and dark edge matches up with the light edge of bottom piece. I found it worked best to have the light edge on bottom so that the feed dogs didn’t have to worry about a seam and fed pieces through as shown. Press.
*Consistency is very important here. Make sure you lineup all of your blocks in the same way and feed them through in the same direction.

Sew with light sides facing seam and press.
Assembling the Top:
Arrange Tree and Split Rail Blocks into 9 rows of 7 blocks.
Baste, Quilt, and Bind as desired. 

One 72″x56″ quilt.

Hop over to my blog to see how I used the leftovers from the jellyroll to create a cute pieced back and a label for the quilt.

Kymberly Pease
{Peas in a Pod Creations}