"Patterns by Jen" is hosting a Monthly Color Challenge. Jen picked the colors of a flower for each month. Read more about the challenge and get the pattern from here: 

Jen's Blog - Patterns by Jen 


Besides the patterns, you will get plenty of help from bloggers who will give you their own tips and tricks. 

The flower of January is called "Bells of Ireland" - if you are not familiar with this flower please google it to have a feel for the colors before you choose your fabrics.


I choose a darker and and a lighter green batik. I love batiks and I prefer to use tone-on-tone small prints. 

When you use two greens, I recommend to use a lighter and darker shade of the same color. See here how I audit and choose my fabrics: https://www.quiltfoxdesign.com/post/394371250122/choosing-fabrics


One of my favorite method is to cut the pieces a bit larger than the pattern calls for. I square up the sections and blocks to the final size after I finish the piecing. This way I do not need to worry too much about the scant 1/4" seam. With this method you need to be careful though. Do not cut the "inner pieces" larger than a scant 1/4" (a few lines of a hair).  You won't be able to change the size of the inner pieces since they are sorrounded by the outer pieces. For this block the "inner pieces" are the dark square in the square-in-square section and the 1 1/2" wide dark green strips. 

You can read some basic cutting tips here: https://www.quiltfoxdesign.com/post/401253546870/cutting-basics


I use my 1/4" foot for piecing, so I cut the squares in half diagonally before piecing the half-square-triangles.

After sewing and pressing the HSTs I square them up in two steps. 

Step 1: I align the diagonal line of my square ruler with the seam-line of the HST and trim off the edges (trim off as little as possible)

Step 2: I turn my HST 180° to the right, align the diagonal line of my square ruler with the seam-line again and cut the HST to the final size

For the square-in-square section, I cut the light green triangles from larger squares (1/2" is enough extra). The dark green center in only a scant 1/4" (a few lines of a hair). Please note that the dark green center is pieced from two pieces, because I was runnig out of this fabric.

I pieced and pressed the section as instructed by the pattern, then squared it up in two steps.

Step 1: I aligned the 1/4" horizontal and vertical lines of my ruler 1/4" above the corners of the inner square and trimed off the excess

Step 2: turn your section 180° to the right, and square up the section to the final size. 

This section is the most "size-sensitive". You do not want to loose the tips of the inner square, that would ruin your block. I made this section twice, cutting the center square 1/8" larger than instructed by pattern. If your seam is a perfect scant 1/4", you might make a perfect section with 3 1/4" x 3 1/4" square, but if it is slightly wider (1/4") than the inner square will be a bit too small. Alternative piecing would be using a 4 1/2" x 4 1/2" dark green square and 4 light green 2 1/2" x 2 1/2" squares and piece as I illustrated on the images below. This method wastes a bit of fabric but creates a precise piece.

I pieced and pressed the rest of the blocks as instructed, cutting the strips just 1-2 hair wider.

When all sections were pieced, pressed and squared up. I joined them into 3 rows 

I pressed the seams as per pattern instructions' 

Pressing the seams correctly will help you to reduce the bulk and make the quilting easier

Finally I joined the 3 rows and pressed the seams.

If you have lots of leftover fabrics, please consider to make my "Birthstones" quilt. 

For each stone I used 2 shades of the same color, but you can also use two different colors.

Find the pattern here: https://www.quiltfoxdesign.com/listing/567222529/quilt-pattern-birthstones-size-60-in-x 

This pattern uses 2 shades of each color and great for using leftover fabrics.