I love a project that comes together quickly and makes for a great gift. Today, I would like to share a tutorial for just that, the Eve Bloom Block.
The Eve Bloom Block is made using turned-edge appliqué and can be completed in just a few hours, making it perfect for gift giving! You can use the block in a quilt or turn it into a fun throw pillow as I have done.
Turned-edge appliqué is a fairly easy technique, but like any new technique you try, you will find that it takes practice to get perfectly smooth shapes. Don’t be hard on yourself if your very first clamshells and petals are a little bumpy, I promise you will get better if you practice!
You Will Need
In order to make one 18” or 12” Eve Bloom Block you will need the following:
(4) 6" x 6" pieces of fabric for clamshell shapes
(4) 2.5" x 5" pieces of fabric for petal shapes
(2) 10" x 10" (or 6.5”x 6.5” for 12” block) pieces of fabric for background A
(2) 10" x 10" (or 6.5”x 6.5” for 12” block) pieces of fabric for background B
Tip:Starching your fabric before cutting will help stabilize the bias edges of the fabric and give you greater accuracy when piecing. It also helps the seams lay flatter and crisper. Visit pileofabric.com/starching for a free starching tutorial.
Step-by-Step Picture Tutorial
Step #1 and #2: Using the Clamshell Fabric Cutting Template, cut (4) clamshells from your 6” squares of fabric.
Step #3: Coat glue on one side of a 5” stabilizer clamshell with a washable glue stick.
Step #4: Stick the glued stabilizer clamshell down centered on the wrong side of one of your fabric clamshells. Press with a hot, dry iron to heat-set the glue.
Step #5: With a washable glue stick, generously coat the top convex curved edge and bottom tip of the fabric around the stabilizer clamshell. Try to keep the glue off the stabilizer, on the fabric only.
Step #6: Starting on one side of the top convex curve of the clamshell, begin turning the fabric along the edge of the stabilizer, sticking it down to the stabilizer as you go. Do this using your thumb and index finger in a pinching action. Focus on pinching just the edge of the stabilizer. Continue turning the edge along the whole top curved edge of the clamshell. Look at the edge to make sure the convex curve looks smooth, and free of bumps. Pressing the pleats from the edge inward, heat-set the glue with a dry, hot iron. Then turn the fabric at the very bottom tip of the clamshell and heat-set with a hot, dry iron. The two concave curves of the clamshell will remain unturned.
Tip: You may only want to glue small portions at a time so the glue doesn’t dry as you turn the edges. You will get faster and more accurate at turning edges with practice.
Step #7: Using the Petal #5 Fabric Cutting Template, cut (4) petals from your 2.5” x 5” pieces of fabric. Coat one side of a stabilizer petal with glue from a washable glue stick. Stick the glued stabilizer petal down centered to the wrong side of one of your fabric petals. Press with a hot, dry iron to heat-set the glue.
Step #8: With a washable glue stick, generously coat the seam allowance on one side of the petal. Starting from one end of the petal, begin turning the fabric along the edge of the stabilizer, sticking it down to the stabilizer as you go. Do this using your thumb and index finger and a pinching action. Continue turning the edge of one side of the petal. Look at the edge to make sure the curve looks smooth, bump and wrinkle free. Heat-set the glue with a dry, hot iron.
Step #9: With a washable glue stick, generously coat the seam allowance on the fabric (on the other side now).
Step #10: Starting from one end of the petal, begin turning the fabric along the edge of the stabilizer, sticking it down to the stabilizer as you go.
Tip: Use your fingernail pressed along the tip of the petal point (red lines shown in #9 diagram) to make sure you’re turning only the fabric at the tip and not the stabilizer too.
Step #11: Place background A and B squares right sides together. Pin or glue baste the squares together along the right edge. Sew along the right edge with a ¼” seam allowance. Repeat this for the second set of background A and B squares, so you have two rows of squares.
Step #12: Press the seam allowances of each row toward the darker fabric.
Step #13: Place the two rows right sides together in a checkered fashion, so that the fabric matches diagonally. The seam allowances should nicely butt up together. Pin or glue baste the rows together, along the bottom edge, matching the center seam allowance first. Sew along the bottom edge with a ¼” seam allowance.
Step #14: Press the seam allowance to one direction.
Quilted Panel:If you would like to turn your Eve Bloom Block into a quilted panel for a pillow as shown in my example follow these steps, otherwise skip to Step #15.
Fuse the 19” square piece of Pellon® 805 Wonder-Under® to one side of the 19” square piece of Pellon® Flex-Foam™. There is a fusible Flex-Foam available from Pellon®, but I find it leaves a wrinkled look. Using the Wonder-Under to turn the non-fusible foam into fusible foam works and looks much nicer.
Now using a 40wt quilting thread and a walking foot for your machine, quilt straight lines in any pattern you would like. For one pillow I quilted straight lines diagonally in an X pattern on the panel. For my second pillow I measured ½” from the edges and quilted a diamond shape.
The quilting can make your block a little wonky so you will want to trim it down to a perfect square. For my pillows I used 10” squares for the background so I trimmed my block to 18” square after quilting.
Step #15: Place liquid washable school glue on the wrong side of one clamshell, along the edges and center.
Step #16: Lay down your background block or quilted panel right side up. Lay the glued clamshell down, glue side down and centered horizontally, lining up the folded bottom tip of the clamshell with the center horizontal seam allowance. Press the clamshell with a hot, dry iron to heat-set the glue.
Step #17: Glue the wrong side of the second clamshell and place it into position (rotated 90 degrees to the left as shown in the diagram) on the background block or quilted panel. The seam allowance of the two clamshells will overlap slightly. Press the clamshell with a hot, dry iron to heat-set the glue.
Step #18: Continue adding the two remaining clamshells to the background block or quilted panel. Using liquid washable school glue with a fine tip, place a fine line of glue on top of the seam allowances of the clamshells that are not turned under.
Step #19: Lay one petal piece wrong side down over top of the glue, lining up the points of the petal between two clamshells and in the very center of the block (shown in red circles). Press the petal with a hot, dry iron to heat-set the glue.
Step #20 Continue adding petals over top of the clamshells and press.
Step #21: Using a 40wt thread and a longer stitch length (about 4.5), topstitch ⅛” away from the edge of each clamshell and petal. Do not backstitch, instead leave your thread tails long at the start and finish.
Step #22: After topstitching all four clamshells and petals, pull the long thread tails to the back side of the block, double-knot, and trim them. You should now have a finished Eve Bloom Block or Eve Bloom Quilted Panel. If you would like to turn your panel into a pillow then check out my tutorial for creating a zippered pillow backing.
I hope you enjoyed this tutorial. If you make an Eve Bloom Block I would love to see it! Share your version with #pileofabrictutorials and #evebloomblock or join the Pile O’ Fabric Facebook group to ask questions and share your projects made with Pile O’ Fabric tutorials or patterns. Happy sewing!
Welcome to the Pile O’ Fabric blog, my name is Alyssa Lichner, I live in sunny Gilbert, AZ. I am a freelance web and graphic designer turned avid sewist. I write modern quilting tutorials and share techniques and inspiration here at Pile O’ Fabric… Read More