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Chefs, Baking and Lisa...

Chefs, Baking and Lisa...

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Do you know the Moda Bake Shop?  Have you "baked" one of the Bake Shop projects?

This is Picnic Fireworks by Jessica Dayon of Skein and Hook.  Picnic Fireworks measures 72" x 72", is rated as Moderate difficulty level and it is made with 1 Fat Quarter Bundle of Picnic Basket Wovens and Bella Solid 98.  This is one of the most recent quilts, it was published in April, 2018.

The Bake Shop started in 2009 as a way to share fun, new projects that could be made with Moda's range of pre-cuts.  Most of the early projects were non-quilty things - stuffed toys, garments and home decor items.

We asked Head Chef and "Kitchen" Director Lisa Calle about the Bake Shop, when she became involved and all sorts of things.  (You know I'm curious that way, right?)

Have you always been involved - in charge?

No, I joined the team in 2012, coming full circle in my personal quilting story.  Some of the first projects I printed out to make when I started quilting were the earliest Bake Shop quilts.

So... Oda Mae?  Are you Oda Mae?

Perhaps.  You know that Oda Mae is Moda in "pig-latin".  Writing posts in Oda's voice is a nice, easy way to add a little personality to the blog.  I think she's a really good gal who loves sewing and quilting, likes eating baked goods - of course! - and enjoys sharing her passion with other sewists.

Jane's Ladder Quilt by Allison Jensen of Woodberry Way.  Measuring 48" x 56", this Charm-Pack Friendly crib quilt is made with Lella Boutique's Nest and Bella Solid 98.  It was published in March, 2018 and it has an Easy difficulty level.

That's one of my favorite things about the Bake Shop - every project has a difficulty rating of Easy, Moderate or Ambitious.  There are links to each category - tag - on the right side of the Bake Shop page.

So Lisa... numbers.  How many posts are on the Bake Shop?  And how many different chefs have there been?

We have 1,414 published posts and we've had 330 contributors.  Only 50 to 60 are active at any given time - "active" meaning that they have published a project in the past year.

Modern Cogs by Jen Van Orman of Heritage Threads.  Measuring 96" x 96", this Easy quilt is made with 1 Fat Quarter Bundle of Ombre Confetti Metallic by V & Co.  It was published in March, 2018.

How many applications do you get in a week or month?  Do you accept every application you receive?

We accept a high percentage of applications.  Typically it's the projects that are too dependent on one fabric line to make the pattern work, or they are easily recognizable as something we've published before.  Our goal is to have projects that quilters can make using fabrics they can purchase easily, or have in their stash.  I know I would love to see more non-quilt projects and clever things to do with pre-cuts.  Our readers love small, quick projects and so do I!

Okay.  I have to ask.  What is the most popular pattern published on the Bake Shop?

A Fabric Easter Basket from Vanessa Christenson - yes, the same Vanessa who is now a Moda fabric designer!  This Basket pattern was published in March, 2009.  It has a Moderate rating and it was made with a Swanky Honey Bun from Chez Moi.


LOL . Coming in first in the Jelly Roll category is Simply Woven Quilt.  I happened to be at a retreat a few weeks after this quilt was published and three women were making it!

Simply Woven Quilt was made by Jess Kelly of SewCraftyJess.  Finishing at 72" x 96", this quilt is made with 2 Jelly Rolls of V & Co.'s Simply Color and Bella Solid 98.  It has a Moderate Rating and was published in October, 2010.

What about Charm Packs?  Are those popular?

Yes, they are!  Our most popular Charm Pack quilt is Pinwheel Baby Quilt. 

Made with Snippets by American Jane, this 36" x 44" Pinwheel Baby Quilt was made by Jodi Nelson of Pleasant Home.  It has a Moderate rating and was published in March, 2009.

The next most popular project is another charm pack quilt - Charming Stars.

Stephanie Roman of Little Lady Patchwork was the chef for this 68" x 68" Easy quiltCharming Stars was published in October, 2010 and it's made with 3 Charm Packs of Fandango by Kate Spain and Bella Solid Ivory 11.

What has been the biggest change in nine years?

Blogging!  When the Bake Shop started, most of the Chefs maintained blogs.  Now, many are only active on social media platforms like Instagram.  The quilting industry has also changed.  Retail customers know what is coming in the pipeline in terms of fabric collections much earlier than they did nine years ago.  As a result, our Chefs often request upcoming fabric groups that I haven't even heard of yet!  The other change is that more of our contributors are running small pattern companies and making money through blog sponsors, advertising, etc.

In addition to the projects, one of my favorite things on the Bake Shop are the tips you share in blog posts and in downloadable printables.

We know that we get a lot of new quilters so we never want to assume that everybody is familiar with the terminology we use, that they know what is included in a Charm Pack. 

Finally, what advice would you have for someone wanting to be a Bake Shop Chef?

Submit good photos and/or a clear sketch of your idea.  The more detail you provide the better!  Link to a place where we can see photos of other things you've made - Instagram, a blog, Flickr.  They all work.  And use pre-cuts!  Every project we accept has to use one of Moda's pre-cuts in some capacity.  

Thank you Lisa!  And thank you for sharing that there are all sorts of exciting things coming this year - from sew-alongs to projects like the 2017 Countdown to Christmas December Blocks of the Day.

So what are you going to make first?  Have you ever made a Bake Shop project?

Happy Tuesday!

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