Alissa Haight Carlton and Kristen Lejnieks’ Block Party Blog Tour – Their Favorite Fabrics

(Disclosure: Stash Books is also my publisher, and Kristen helped cover Spring Quilt Market for this blog.)

Today I’m excited to be hostessing a stop of the blog tour for Block Party: The Modern Quilting Bee, written by Alissa Haight Carlton and Kristen Lejnieks. In case you haven’t heard of the book yet, the project started out as a blog/virtual quilting bee amongst a like-minded group of 12 women from across the country, and about a year later became a book project with Stash Books. It is in many ways a regular quilting pattern book, covering a variety of techniques ranging in difficulty from beginner to intermediate, but it’s also a guide to running your own old-fashioned in-person or new-fangled online quilting bee. All the quilts are based on improvisational blocks, with many of them wonky and all of them modern in appeal. You can get a glimpse of all 12 quilts from the book’s great trailer:

Block Party: The Modern Quilting Bee book promo from Alissa Haight Carlton on Vimeo.

Just like with Susan’s book tour, I thought it’d be fun to have Alissa and Kristen complete the same lists about their favorite fabrics — five lists of five fabrics each! (Clearly these list assemblages need a clever name, but my brain’s not offering one up today. Any suggestions?)

Alissa’s Lists

Five Favorite Fabrics in Your Stash Now

  1. Wa-Modern by Hokkoh: Such beautiful design. I love the colors and the organic nature of the dash-y stripes.
  2. Kei Honeycomb Yellow Background White Dots: I have had a longstanding love of all of the colors of these dots and have used them so much. I tend to tire of a fabric and stop using it after awhile but this dot sticks with me.
  3. Caterpillar Woven Stripe, Blue by Kaffe Fassett: There are so many of the Kaffe Fassett stripes to pick from and this is one of my favorites. A woven strip has such great texture and depth.
  4. Kaffe Fassett Shot Cotton, Galvanized: This fabric is magic! The warp and weft are aqua and orange but together the fabric reads gray. Amazing what color can do sometimes. Funny, two Kaffe Fassett fabrics in a row and I don’t think I’ve ever bought a yard of any of his prints. I love his woven basics though.
  5. Raise the Roof, Bright from Habitat by Jay McCarroll: I love this whole fabric line and hope that the fabric industry starts to give us more variety like this line. It looks completely different from most of the floral and/or cute fabric lines that are released and I think it’s a breath of fresh air.


Five Fabrics on Your Wish List

  1. Yoshiko Jinzenji’s fabric: Saw this at Market and was lucky enough to have my local shop owner buy some. I can’t wait to get my hands on it.
  2. Monsterz by Michele Brummer-Everett for Cloud 9 Fabrics: Also saw a bit of this at Market. I have more cute prints in my stash than I’ll ever use and stopped buying them full tilt a couple of years ago, but this one will be an exception for me. The cuteness is extreme!
  3. A lot more independently printed fabrics. I’ll admit that the prices are sometimes off putting to me because I don’t always have a lot of money to spend on fabric, but there’s so much out there that’s truly innovative and inspiring.
  4. More vintage fabrics. It’s so easy to build a quilting stash by just buying quilting cottons from fabric shops, and that’s what I’ve done. I want to take my stash to the next level and get better about digging around at flea markets and second hand places to add vintage and different weights of fabrics.
  5. Lastly, I would love it if color cards for the woven solids (like Moda Crossweave, Robert Kaufman Carolina Chambrays and the Fassett Shot Cottons) existed. It’s particularly hard to know what they look like from photos online.


Five Fabrics You Could (or Do) Consume by the Bolt

  1. Stripe in Pond from Red Letter Day by Lizzie House: I have bound a ton of quilts in this print. I love a stripy binding so much! Something about these colors and the imperfection of the strip makes it a favorite of mine.
  2. Basketweave in Orange from Katie Jump Rope by Denyse Schmidt: I could use this basic in the aqua colorway just as much as as the orange. Luckily I realized early in the life of both of these prints that I would use them a ton so I have yardage of both.
  3. Kona Cottons Bone, Ash and Coal: These three don’t really need any explanation and are the ones that I really do consume by the bolt. I use all three as my neutrals and/or the negative space in my quilts over and over and over again.


Five Most Recent Acquisitions

  1. Pinstripe from Shades of Gray by Jan DiCintio – And another imperfect stripe! I didn’t realize I’d included so many until I typed this up. I guess I like ‘em, huh?
  2. Moda Crossweave Gold Green – Another amazing line of solids that have wonderful texture.
  3. Dogwood Diamond Chevron from Greenfield Hill by Denyse Schmidt – this print is a voile which has a lovely soft drape. It lends itself to garment sewing (which I’m scared of). It’s my favorite of all of the prints of this line though so I wish they’d also printed it on quilting cotton.
  4. Kona Cotton, Peacock: I’d be lying if I didn’t include some Kona in my recent acquisitions. I buy no single type of fabric more than Kona cottons.
  5. Picket in Dusk from Outside Oslo by Jessica Jones: Love the colors and graphic nature of this print. I use almost all of my fabrics for quilting but I’m thinking I’ll make a tote with this one which is a home dec weight.


A Five Fabric Combo

I thought I’d focus on solids here because that’s pretty much 97% of what I’m buying and using these days. I thought a nice mix would show off the range that they can have. Mixing different solids is such a lovely way to add subtle interest to a quilt.

  1. Robert Kaufman Quilter’s Linen Grey
  2. Kaffe Fasset Shot Cotton Terra Cotta
  3. Moda Crossweave Blue Blue
  4. Robert Kaufman Kona Cotton Grass Green
  5. Welcome Road in Olive from Nicey Jane by Heather Baily – I love the idea of all solids with a little pop of patterned fabric pieced in so I included this great print.


Kristen’s Lists

Five Favorite Fabrics in Your Stash Now

  1. Alexander Henry Jonathan Livingston Seagull in Taupe
  2. American Jane “Magic Bean” in Green
  3. Heather Ross Unicorn print from Far Far Away in green
  4. This one is tricky. I know its Kokka Echino, but I bought in Japan and don’t what year it is from.
  5. Brandon Mably Jazz for Rowan


Five Fabrics on Your Wish List

  1. Demaskery in Steel, Toomuchery, by Helen Dardik for P & B Textile – I love the neutral colors combined with a complex pattern.
  2. Yellow Basketweave, Dazzle, by Melisa Averinos for Andover – just watch, this basketweave is going to be everyone’s favorite new basic.
  3. Pearl Bracelet in Green, Lizzy House for Andover- one of my all-time favorite fabrics that is now coming out in new colors.
  4. Summer Totem in Tart, Loulouthi by Anna Maria Horner for Westminster- a very large scale pattern that is stunningly beautiful.
  5. Shards, Cut Out & Keep by Cloud Nine Fabrics – love the triangles.


Five Fabrics You Could (or Do) Consume by the Bolt

  1. Park Slope Leaf Dots, by Erin McMorris for Freespirit in Orange – These leafy dots are so versatile.
  2. Kei Honeycomb Dots in Grey- another very versatile fabric in a lovely warm grey.
  3. Katie Jump Rope basketweave in aqua, by Denyse Schmidt for Westminster- an oldie but goodie.
  4. Kona in White- use this by the bolt and then some. I also use a ton of Kona in Ash.
  5. Kaffe Fassett Shot Cotton in Sludge; the crossweaves on these add an enormous amount of dimension to any project.


Five Most Recent Acquisitions

  1. A stack of Kokka Echino fat quarters from sample spree at quilt market
  2. A stack of the new Art Gallery solids, also from sample spree
  3. Alexander Henry Heath in black (I also bought it in red, olive, and taupe)
  4. Scalloped stripe by Jillian Phillips for Hoffman
  5. A bunch of the new DS Quilts prints for Joann


A Favorite Five Fabric Combo

I have been really interested in working with neutrals recently, in particular, the subtle contrast that using a range of neutral can add to a project.

  1. Alexander Henry Heath in Olive
  2. Kona cotton in Ice (a pale aqua)
  3. Paint-by-number dots by Erin Michael
  4. Kona in Cactus (a medium yellow-green)
  5. Bars in Olive Oil by Vicky Payne Home Dec


Thanks so much, ladies! I love getting these glimpses into other people’s stashes and seeing how they put together fabrics, don’t you?

Oh hey, as a reward for making it to the bottom of the post, you should know that Stash Books is offering up one copy of Block Party to a True Up reader today. (Also visit the other stops on the blog tour, listed below, for more chances to win.) Just leave a comment on this post, and I’ll draw a winner randomly next Friday, July 8, 2011, around noon Central U.S. time, unless I’m in labor (that’s my due date)!

Follow the Blog Tour:

  1. Film in the Fridge
  2. A Quilt is Nice
  3. I Heart Linen
  4. Tallgrass Prairie Studio
  5. Oh, Fransson
  6. All Buttoned Up
  7. West Coast Crafty
  8. Connecting Threads Blog
  9. Crafty Girls Workshop
  10. Whip Up
  11. Pink Chalk Studio
  12. [you are here] True Up
  13. 7/5/2011: Block Party Blog
  14. 7/6/2011: Anna Maria Horner
  15. 7/7/2011: Craftzine

And more links:

Block Party blog
Facebook Page


  1. Marianne says:

    Loved seeing everyone’s favorites. I also saw a few of my favorites in the post. Please put my name in the drawing. I’d love to have that book!

  2. VickiT says:

    Wow. I love seeing everyone’s favorite or their most recently purchased fabrics are. There are quite a few there that I haven’t seen before and now think I might need some of them. Some were already on my list of wants. And this book is already on my wish list as well. I very much hope to win one but if not, then hopefully I’ll be able to buy one soon enough.

  3. Chelsea says:

    Hi! Happy Canada Day! It’s so cool getting a glimpse of other quilter’s fabric choices. I want to snatch up that neutral olive bundle for myself. Thanks for the giveaway almost mama!

  4. Katharine says:

    What a wonderful stop on the book tour. Thank you so much.

  5. Mary P says:

    What a great interview! Thanks!

  6. Wendy says:

    Would love to win this book so I could use up some fabrics from my stash!

  7. Tamie says:

    For your sake, I hope you are in labor on the 8th. I remember being so ready at the end of my pregnancies. If not, I’d love to have a copy of the book.

  8. Denise says:

    Thanks for this post. I’ve never noticed the crossweave solids before–now I feel that I must find some!

  9. Lindsay says:

    Congrats on your due date! Loved this fun post :)

  10. Mary Jo says:

    Thanks for the stash post and book review. So much fun to see what others favorites are. Congratulation on the new little person.

  11. Jen S says:

    I have some of those fabrics in my stash! Its always fun to see what peaks others’ interests! Thanks forvthe chance to win!

  12. Beth T. says:

    What fun it is to see someone else’s fabric. I need to get some of those shot cottons! Although today some Anika “foxy” foxes arrived and I am totally enamored, so I’m content with my stash.

    Thanks for the chance to win a book I’be been wishing for. And hooray for a baby soon to arrive.

  13. Janelle says:

    Loved seeing all the fabric combos! I’d love to win this book, thanks for the chance to win!

  14. Brenda C. says:

    What a range of fabrics! My first time visiting your blog-site, enjoying your posts! Thanks for sharing, and for the opportunity to win the Block Party book. Brenda (Texas)

  15. Vanesa says:

    I loved this post and reading about your fabric picks!

  16. Tamar W says:

    Thanks for sharing the beautiful fabric choices. The book looks great- fingers crossed!

  17. Nancy L says:

    Looove seeing all these fabrics and the books looks great!

  18. Lisa Marie says:

    Wow, lots of lovely fabrics to drool over. I can’t wait to see this book and what all these talented quilters have done!

  19. Colleen says:

    This book looks wonderful! thanks for the reveiw and hosting the giveaway!

  20. Chris says:

    The fabrics are lovely and the book looks like it too! thanks for the chance to win such a great book!

  21. sabrina says:

    Love the fabric selections. It gives you great jumping off points. Enjoying the blog tour and the book. If I don’t win, I’ll still buy it, lol!

  22. Elle says:

    I absolutely LOVE Kristen’s final selection! Absolutely stunning!

  23. Heidi says:

    HOpe you have your baby soon. I’m impatiently waiting for mine (overdue now). Thanks for the contest.

  24. Sylvia says:

    What a fun post, loved seeing all the fabrics.

  25. Amy says:

    I loved reading “why” these were the particular favorite fabrics. I’m new at this, so building a stash is a lot more complicated that I would have thought.

  26. Amanda says:

    I would love to win this. And love this post!

  27. Rebekah says:

    i have been dying to see this book!! it would be awesome to win, thanks for the chance :)

  28. Rebekah says:

    i have been dying to see this book!! it would be awesome to win, thanks for the chance :)

  29. sewkatiedid says:

    Love seeing the combos and some fabrics I haven’t held yet in my hands!

  30. Sammie says:

    I’m so looking forward to this book, thank you for the giveawy! My fingers are crossed

  31. CathyC in Alberta says:

    Helps to see how other artists combine colours to get a nice visual effect.

  32. Lisa LeBlanc says:

    Thanks for the look into other’s stash…I spy with my little eyes some that I have! Lisa in Texas

  33. WandaFish says:

    I loved the peek into Alissa’s and Kristen’s stashes, thank you – a really enjoyable post!
    Thanks for the chance to win a copy of Block Party. I hope all goes well with the birth :)

  34. Alli says:

    It was fun reading about the fabrics Alissa and Kristen use and want to buy! It makes me think I should buy certain fabrics in more than 1-yard lengths. :)

  35. Patty says:

    Love looking at the fabrics.

  36. andi says:

    Oh my goodness! Good luck with your labour. I hope all goes smoothly with a very happy ending!!

  37. melissa says:

    Thanks for showing us some of your current fave fabrics, I love seeing what others like. I love the Lizzy House stripe too.

  38. jenifer says:

    thanks for the fun post! this is a great blog tour with this book. Good luck with your labor! Just an fyi … I had an early august due date, and I naturally “assumed” I’d go into labor early (because it was my 2nd child, I guess) — my daughter ended up being born two weeks AFTER! Ugh. Wishing you the best!

  39. Marianne says:

    Looks to be a great book! I’ve only been lucky once- delivering right on my due date- good luck to you!

  40. Fran H says:

    Excellent interview & thanks for the chance to win a copy of this fab book.

  41. Brooke says:

    Great post. Love seeing little compilations like this. Very inspiring.

  42. Jeanne says:

    I am really liking this block party. You all have such unique methods of interviewing/reviewing. Thank you all for hostessing. Hoping I win.

  43. Sunni says:

    Maybe it should be “The Rule of 5′s” Bad things come in groups of 3′s, but beautiful fabric comes in groups of 5′s!
    Love all the fabric. Nice to see what others work with.

  44. Jessica Blomquist says:

    Thank You for this interview! I love seeing what fabrics other people are using. Great inspiration (and envy)!

  45. john says:

    Great post. thanks for the giveaway

  46. marg says:

    Loved the fabric and also the book :-)

  47. Judy Johnson says:

    Thanks for the great review of favorites. I’m ready to start shopping!

  48. Deb says:

    Thanks for sharing all of those favorite fabrics! It’s so fun to see what other people love. The book looks fabulous – thanks for the chance!

  49. Deb says:

    I am so loving all of the stripe fabric these days. Thanks for the giveaway!

  50. Angela says:

    LOVE all those fabrics – and their comments on why they love them. Great interview.