Monday, January 20, 2014

Free pattern: Shaun the Sheep!

I hope you are all huge fans of magic, because I pulled off the most amazing disappearing act this fall!  I was there one moment, and the next:  Bam!  I was gone.  :)

2013 was a little cruel to us here, and the year really ended with a bang.  My husband was deployed to Afghanistan the day before my birthday, leaving me to pretend to hold down the fort here.  School started right before a bad bout of strep throat and other illnesses swept through the house, then my husband's grandmother became ill and we thought we would lose her.  Not long after she recovered, his other grandmother unexpectedly passed away and he came home early to be with the family during our exceptionally crazy holidays.  Somewhere in the midst of all of that, I was volunteering at the kids' school, leading a Girl Scout troop, trying to navigate the medical system for my son, and carting the kids to their activities.  Since I believe that my blog is a way of sharing my craft and not a job, and I never want blogging to become a stressful exercise, I simply let it languish until I was ready to return to it.

Now that life is returning to normal, I am very excited to work on "As You Wish," a fun paper pieced project going on over at Fandom in Stitches.  Jennifer came up with an exceptional book quilt design for the project that I am looking forward to trying out.  I am also back to designing.  First, since some of you have been patiently waiting, I have finished up reworking the pattern for Shaun the Sheep, which you can find here or on Craftsy.

Shaun the Sheep Pattern
The computer-generated image.

Shaun the Sheep Pattern
The real deal!
Grass Fabric

The pattern is for a 10" block.  I made mine 20" to serve as the large centerpiece of a small quilt, and I knew he had to be on a grassy background.  I love this Danscapes fabric by Dan Morris.  I am a huge fan of what I call semidirectional prints, where they have a general direction, but no one will notice if you make a small mistake here or there while piecing it.  The Danscapes line has some really beautiful natural materials in their prints, like bricks, pebbles, and grass.  I know I will be looking for more of those in the future.  Moda has a really pretty grass print in the Modascapes line as well.

Shaun the Sheep Fabric Choices
My fabric choices:  grass, white, and black.
 This is a pretty simple pattern, with only a few really small pieces and not many angles.  It should come together fairly easily, as long as you take care to compare the pattern to the colored key and write the correct colors on the pattern.  You can opt to leave his face as it is here, or you can easily embroider some eyes on him.

A fellow quilter on the Fandom in Stitches Facebook page, Vanda Chittenden of Insanitree, graciously offered to test my pattern last year, so I wanted to take a moment to thank her.  I appreciate her willingness to help and her time, and I do regret that I was not able to release the corrected pattern until now.

Shaun the Sheep
Vanda's Shaun the Sheep.  You can visit him at

Eventually I will design some of Shaun's friends, but that won't be for a while.  We have some other fun things coming up in the meantime, though.

Coming up!

  • "Christmas Reveals" will showcase some of the projects I made for family and friends that I could not post before.  I have some really fun things to share, and I will have links to all the patterns or tutorials I used.
  • This week, we will begin our "Frozen Fridays," where I will share a series of Frozen designs with you.  Since I am working on a wall hanging for my daughter's February Frozen-themed birthday, I thought this would be a perfect time to release these patterns.  I am designing five 5" paper pieced blocks, perfectly sized to fit in Jennifer Ofenstein's Classic Film pattern.  This week, you will be meeting Sven.  Since I am still in the design and testing phase, I cannot commit to a new paper pieced pattern each week, so Fridays may feature tutorials for Frozen jewelry and other goodies instead.  But rest assured, all five patterns will be released by the end of March!
  • "Frozen Fridays" continue until all five patterns are released.
  • With the Superbowl coming up, I thought it might be fun to have a little "bowl" giveaway ourselves.  More information about this giveaway will show up in February, but I do have three prizes, so there's a good chance you could win if you stay tuned!

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