Quilt Block Basics · Quilting Partners · Rose Cards

Quilt Block Basics — The Y Block, Rose Card List, and Hoffman Fabrics + VRD

Hello Quilty Friends!

Happy Thursday to you!

Wow! We’ve got lots to talk about today — I hope you are ready!

Let’s start off with our Quilt Blocks Basics first — today we are taking a good look at the Y BLOCK!

I did the HSTs and QSTs before tackling the Y block because a Y block is a combination of a QST and an HST. Sounds weird, I know, but really, that’s what it is.

There are other names for the Y block unit, but for the purpose of this post, we’ll stick with calling it the Y block.

Let’s look at some blocks using the Y block unit:

Bet you’ve never heard of most of these blocks — they were pretty new to me, too.

Now let’s play a little bit with this very versatile quilt block unit. We are going to use 4 Y block units together in a 4 Patch configuration.

Let’s see what happens when we flip the Y block units around in the block:

Wow! We can really come up with some fun blocks that will make interesting quilt designs!

I think you can see the versatility of the Y block unit in the block variations above. Just imagine what you could come up with if you started changing out the fabrics as well as moving the units about. This is only a 4 patch block frame — what about a 9 patch frame? What if you combined this unit with other units like HSTs, QSTs, or others?

It is simply mind-boggling, isn’t it???

Electric Quilt 8 Software makes it sew easy to play with these units! I can get lost for hours playing with blocks in EQ….

How to Make a Y Block

There are several different ways to tackle the construction of the Y block unit. I decided not to reinvent the wheel because there are so many different ways to make a traditional Y block.

Here’s a great traditional Y block tutorial from Scissortailquilting.com just like the way I would demonstrate how to make it. YAY MATH! They even include the math formulas for you as well as a cutting chart.

The traditional method works great for putting together Y block units, except for one little thing — you make 4 units with mirror images, which is terrific if you want mirror images, but what if you need a Y block unit but not its mirror image?????

Seriously, though, who wants to make twice as many blocks as they need to, which takes twice as much time and twice as much fabric???

My friend, Cathey Laird, of Cathey Marie Designs, was fascinated with the Y block unit and pondered the mirror image issue for a long time until she came up with a solution. Cathey invented a cool Y block ruler which eliminated the mirror image problem — instead of mirror images, you get 4 identical Y block units!

You can find Cathey’s ruler HERE.

Here’s a great Y block tutorial done by Cathey herself:

Y Block VRD Rose Card Patterns

I went through the entire pattern catalog and found only a few Rose Card patterns featuring Y blocks.

Get Crossed Paths HERE

Get Twisted HERE

Well, I see new Y block designs for VRD in the future! LOL!

Speaking of Rose Cards, I wanted to share something very cool with you!

Rose Card Tracker

Did you know VRD has a printable list of ALL the Rose Cards????? This might be new to you because it is actually located on the wholesale website, but the list is for everyone who loves Rose Cards.

It is updated every month to include each month’s new patterns, too.

You can find the VRD Rose Card list HERE.

Not too long ago, I finally got all my Rose Cards organized and alphabetized in small clear plastic crates with lids. Yay me!

So next I decided to figure out which Rose Cards I was missing in my collection.

I easily printed out the list (3 pages long as of right now) and sorted through all my Rose Cards to find out which ones I did not have. Then I ordered all the ones I was missing. LOL! As long as I keep up with the new cards, I will have a complete collection of VRD Rose Cards.

It really didn’t take me too long to go through the list because it is in alphabetical order, just like my Cards. Below, you can see that I used red Xs to mark the ones I had. Then, when I did my order, I just ordered all the ones without a red X. I put a small dot in the empty spaces as I went along so I knew which ones I had already added to my order (in case I had to stop at some point and go back to it later).

As of right now I have 3 of the plastic storage boxes almost full with my Cards, so I will probably be adding a 4th as soon as my new Cards arrive. I plan to keep my Cards organized that way, then it will be a snap to find any Card I am looking for.

Yay! Three cheers for organization!!!! How many Rose Cards do you have? How many do you need to complete your collection?

Check Out Our VRD Rose Card Patterns in the NEW Hoffman Spring Project Book

We’ve been working with Hoffman Fabrics for a while now. Their new Spring catalogs are out and I’m excited to share the new Spring 2023 Project Book with you. It is simply drool-worthy!!!!

Hoffman Project Catalog Spring 2023

Sew. Dream. And head to your local quilt shop to find Hoffman Fabrics and VRD Rose Cards.

Until next Thursday —

Sew. Laugh. Repeat.


Tricia @VRD

Blog Hop 2023 · Rose Cards · villa rosa designs

New January 2023 VRD Rose Card Patterns and VRD Fast & Fun Blog Hop Update

Hello Quilty Friends!

Happy Thursday to you!

It’s my favorite Thursday of the month — the Thursday after the first Friday of the month. That means it’s time to brag up our NEW January 2023 Rose Card patterns! Yay!

I just love sharing all the creativity our family of designers come up with each month. Even though I’ve been designing patterns for VRD since 2017, it still blows my mind that each and every month Villa Rosa Designs puts out 5 new regular patterns and at least 1 new table runner pattern. What other pattern company puts out over 60 new patterns a year? And has a catalog of more than 500 patterns on top of that?

Who’s crazy enough to do all that????

WE AREwww.villarosadesigns.com!!!

Okay, okay, let’s see the new January patterns! Finally!

Here they are! Aren’t they great?

Bella Vista is a horizontal panel pattern.

Diamond Daze uses fat quarters.

Petit Fours is 5″ square friendly.

Piccadilly uses 2 1/2″ strips.

Tradewinds uses a focal or novelty print with an ombre.

You can get all 5 patterns for the low low price of $8.95 HERE. Remember, free shipping in the USA and International orders are for the digital set of cards.

We have kits too, so click on the pattern names above to check kit availability for each pattern.

Our new Table Runner Rose Card is Blizzard. Who doesn’t love classic blue and white???

You can purchase the pattern or check to see if the kit is still available HERE.

If you aren’t getting your VRD Rose Card patterns delivered right to your mailbox each month (snail mail or digital), you really need to join one of our Monthly Pattern Clubs! You can do the regular 5 patterns or the 5 patterns + table runners. You choose!

To register for the regular Pattern Club, go HERE.

To register for Pattern Club + Table Runners, go HERE.

Now that you’re hyped about our newest patterns like I am, let’s talk about our VRD Blog Hop January 19-26 — that means it starts next week! Yippee!

UPDATE: Villa Rosa Designs Fast & Fun Blog Hop January 19-26

I can’t believe that the Blog Hop is next week! This is going to be SEW MUCH FUN!

Are you ready to see great quilts using our special Blog Hop Collection Rose Card patterns?

Are you ready to register for loads of great prizes??

Are you ready to shake off the winter blahs???


We are so excited here at VRD and we hope that you are getting excited for the Blog Hop next week, too.

We are incredibly fortunate to have the COOLEST bloggers out there in the blogosphere, participating in our blog hop! You can check out their blogs below:


















Prizes for giveaways are coming in daily. Here’s sneak peak!

From Timeless Treasures:

From The Gypsy Quilter and Creative Grids:

From Moda:

From Hoffman California Fabrics:

While I snapped pictures of goodies, my furbaby Griffin decided to investigate. He likes to think he’s the Inspector General. LOL! Silly Griffy!

Here are some of the other prizes that will be given away:

Electric Quilt is giving away a copy of Electric Quilt 8! Wow!

The Quilts of Valor Foundation will be giving away copies of their latest books! Woohoo!

Villa Rosa Designs will be giving away sets of our 2023 Blog Hop Collection Rose Card patterns! Cool Beans!

The Orphan Quilter (moi) will be giving away signed copies of books. Neat-o!

But wait! There’s more!

Many of our bloggers will be offering giveaways of their own in addition to the sponsor prizes on their blogs too — from t-shirts to charm squares to panels to books — OH MY!

There will also be 2 big Prize Packs filled with lots of quilting goodies to giveaway, too!!

Thanks to our awesome sponsors! This Blog Hop wouldn’t be happening without you!











Stay tuned for the beginning of the week when I do a special blog post all about the Blog Hop with the Blog Hop Schedule.

And then all the Blogworthy FUN starts RIGHT HERE at Villa Rosa Quilts on Thursday, January 19th.

Get ready for an awesome Blog Hop!

Don’t forget to tell all your quilty friends so they can join in the fun, too!

Until next Thursday —

Sew. Laugh. Repeat.


Tricia @VRD

quilt market · Rose Cards · villa rosa designs

Welcome to International Quilt Market Fall 2022!

Hello Quilty Friends!

Happy Thursday to you!

Here it is — a little peak inside International Quilt Market by moi just for you.

I remember before I attended my first Fall Market in 2010, “Market” was a term that conjured up all kinds of quilt mystique. We talked about it in hushed voices tinged with awe. What exactly was it? How did you get to go? Why was it such a mystery?

Twelve years later and although the mystery has unraveled over the years, I am still amazed by every Quilt Market I attend.

This year was different from all the others — I came to Market with a whole new purpose. In the past, I either attended Market in order to promote my latest book or as an independent designer associated with a publisher or other business. This time I came as part of the Villa Rosa Designs team and would be working at the VRD booth for the first time. I really didn’t know what to expect, but I was so excited to go. I had a lot to learn and had great teachers in Pat, our “Rose Queen”, Bonnie who manages the retail shop in California, and Leann, Pat’s daughter and the VRD computer whiz.

So what exactly is International Quilt Market?

Since 1979, the show has been the trade show for the quilting and textile industries.

Market is a wholesale trade show, open only to credentialed attendees and those in the business. Here, you’ll be able to visit more than 1,000 booths to see all kinds of products both new and familiar ranging from fabrics, book, and patterns to sewing machines, notions, and supplies. You can also learn in dozens of Take & Teach classes and Business Seminars, and take that knowledge or class skills back home to your shop or business!

From the Quilts, Inc. website.

This year’s Houston Quilt Market might not have been as big as the last pre-pandemic Houston Market in 2019, but everyone there was excited and energized to be there.

Let me take you on a little tour of Quilt Market by visiting some of the booths and vendors.

First up, of course is our Villa Rosa Designs booth!

Nice, huh? All the quilts you see hung around the walls of the booth are all cover quilts for Rose Cards of the last 6 months. Oh! The table runners were there too — draped down on the table fronts. Bright, colorful, and fun! We even had fat quarters bundles and kits.

So many great shop owners/workers, designers, and lots of other folks in the industry stopped by to see the latest patterns and catch up. Everyone was so kind and excited about our Rose Card patterns. I met a lot of super people and really enjoyed chatting and talking Villa Rosa Designs with everyone.

When the booth wasn’t too busy, we all took turns going to appointments, meeting up with contacts, and walking the floor, seeing all the other booths, and checking out displays to see what was new and trending. Of course, when we were swamped, it was all hands on deck!

News Flash!

One of the things we were really excited to share with everyone who walked into the booth was our NEW Villa Rosa Designs fabric collection with Blank Quilting. The collection is called Xanadu. Yep, like the 1970’s movie. And the collection has a wonderful 70s feel that is fresh, fun, funky, and flirty with an updated color palette. It was designed by Pat’s sister, Nancy Lorene, who does most of the art for the Villa Rosa Designs Rose Cards. There are 12 completely different fabrics in the collection. It should be shipping to your local quilt shops in April 2023.

Here it is! Isn’t it great??? My absolute favorite piece is the one that looks like paper snippets (I love them all of course, but that one really sparks my imagination).

We were even able to make up a few quilts using Xanadu samples! The real fabrics are even better than the digital images.

I checked in with some of my favorite vendors and also met some new ones this year.

One of the first places I checked out was the “Toy Department,” Graphic Expressions, where you can find all kinds of fun, useful, and quirky little goodies.

My next stop was to see my old friends, the Springers at Quilts from Mulberry Lane. I met them at my first Quilt Market and at every one I’ve attended since, I make sure to stop to shop and catch up. They always have a great selection of antique quilts and textiles. This year they even had some feed sacks, but I was already familiar with the patterns, so I shopped through their antique quilt blocks and brought a great selection home with me.

It took me a little while to find the Swan Amity booth, but after the second attempt, I found them. Boy was I glad too! They were on my to-do list for Market because I needed a new pair of machine quilting gloves. I found their gloves when I attended Market in 2019 and I never quilt without them now, but after 3 years, my gloves are starting to show some wear (see my 3 year old pair on the left in the photo below). Swan Amity gloves are a lot like a leather golf glove with touchscreen fingertips and padded palms. Love them!

I had a great time shooting the breeze with the ladies at the Mary Ellen’s Best Press booth. Devi and the gang were so much fun! I personally can’t make a quilt without Best Press. My favorite scents are Peach and Citrus. What’s your favorite?

I stopped by the Hoffman California Fabrics booth and got the chance to meet up with Sandy, who I’ve been working with on some projects lately. It was so awesome to finally meet her! That’s one of my favorite things about Quilt Market — meeting people in person, especially if you’ve only been in contact with them through email.

At Market, the fabric companies display quilt samples featuring their upcoming collections so it’s a really good opportunity to see upcoming trends in fabric colors and quilt styles. Look at these gorgeous quilts on display at Hoffman.

I checked in with my pals at Choice Fabrics, too, and introduced them to Villa Rosa Design Rose Cards. Sorry, I never did get around to taking a photo of their booth, we were too busy gabbing! LOL!

I was on the lookout for new products and other cool stuff when I walked around the show.

I met Rosanna of Rosanna Diggs Embroidery. This was her first time at Quilt Market, showing off her great embroidery kits. The kits had absolutely everything in them you needed except scissors! And the designs were just adorable. The Hexagon quilt block kit grabbed my attention on the front table, so I stopped in the booth to say hi.

I stopped to visit with the designer, Lori, of From My Heart to Your Hands, to tell her how much I love her gorgeous miniature quilt patterns. I have collected quite a few of her Fat Quarter Quilting patterns, which have 9 mini quilts in each pattern pack. I love the mix of piecing and applique, although I’m definitely a piecer and not an appliquer — I still haven’t finished my first mini applique quilt from one of her patterns from years ago. I really loved her display of the mini quilts pinned with clothespins to clotheslines. So fun and eye catching! Wish I’d thought of it!

I visited with another pattern designer, Dawn, at the Sew Cherished booth. Her wool applique was simply amazing. Wool applique is something I really admire, but haven’t done much of it yet. Someday……

A new friend I met at lunch introduced me to the ladies at the booth next to hers, Trailhead Yarns. Their threads are truly amazing and there are so many colors to choose from — even variegated! I’m thinking I might want to try some Sashiko again sometime.

Everywhere I turned there were QUILTS, QUILTS, and more QUILTS! Here are some of the great quilts I spotted at Market.

Well, that just about wraps up my visit to International Quilt Market. I hope you enjoyed seeing what I saw. My head is swimming with visions of quilts and fabrics. Time to spend some quality time with my sewing machine.

Until next Thursday —

Sew. Laugh. Repeat.


Tricia @VRD

Quilting Partners · Rose Cards · villa rosa designs

Quilting Partners

Hello Quilty Friends!

Happy Thursday to you!

I don’t know if you’ve ever noticed on the right side of the blog that we’ve been adding links under our new “Quilting Partners” heading.

Here at VRD, we’ve been working hard to make connections with other industry professionals, organizations, and companies and this “Quilting Partners” section is a growing list of professionals, organizations, and companies we are working with.

Today, I thought I’d talk a little bit about our quilting partners (in crime — LOL!).

As you know, our Rose Card patterns really rock — besides being beginner friendly, they feature easy piecing and often popular precuts. Besides, they are fun projects with an attractive price. And they are not only for beginners, either — more advanced quilters find them just as appealing and addicting! A lot of quilters use our patterns for their charity quilts as well as gift-giving, and even projects for themselves (once in a while, anyway). Thanks to the creative genius behind Villa Rosa Designs — our very own Rose Queen, Pat Fryer — Rose Cards are some of the most popular quilt patterns out there!

That being said, fabric companies as well as other quilting businesses are starting to jump aboard our Rose Card party train.

Hoffman California International Fabrics

I’ve personally been having lots of fun with Hoffman recently, creating images featuring their new fabric collections in our Rose Card patterns! Check out the PDF below. This PDF shows quilt shops how to kit up the three patterns, Hillside Charm, Addison, and Remember Me using the Hoffman digital collection, Wading with Water Lilies. This a great help for quilt shops because it even tells you the level, how long a class would be, where to purchase the patterns, as well as what to put into kits. You can find this downloadable PDF and more on the Hoffman website.

This was definitely one of my favorite Hoffman collections to play with. Wading with Water Lilies will be available in quilt shops this fall, so you can be sure that there will be kits out there at your favorite quilt shops as well as yardage. Don’t forget to grab yours!

Buy the patterns here:

Hillside Charm Pattern

Addison Pattern

Remember Me Pattern

Keepsake Quilting

Who doesn’t love the gorgeous fabrics, great supplies, and fun notions available at Keepsake Quilting??? Well, I have secret to share with you. SHHHHH! Don’t tell anyone……. Oh all right, go ahead and share, we don’t mind.

Keepsake offers lots of fun Fabric Collections of the Month Clubs. Have you ever tried any of their awesome fat quarter clubs???? They have many to choose from —

Beautiful Basic Medley of the Month

Hoffman Medley of the Month

Standard Club Medley of the Month

Bali Medley of the Month

19th Century Medley of the Month

Circa 1930 Medley of the Month

Moda Medley of the Month

Kaufman Medley of the Month

With all of these awesome Fat Quarter Clubs, there really is something for every quilter out there! And what fun it is to receive a surprise fabric collection in the mail every month (I call them squishies). Now the cool thing is that several of the above medleys include a free pattern. Yep, you guessed it — you might find a Villa Rosa Rose Card tucked into your fat quarter medley of the month.

FreeSpirit Fabrics

Are you familiar with Tim Holtz the designer? You’ll find him in the scrapbooking and papercrafting aisle of your local craft store, but you’ll also find him in your favorite quilt shop, too. His style is sew unique!

Here’s a PDF of my Rose Card pattern 2M featuring 3 different Tim Holtz fabric collections. Not only does it show you the gorgeous moody fabrics in the quilt design, it also shows fabric requirements for the quilt and where to buy the pattern, making it a snap for quilt shops to kit up the pattern and fabrics.

Here are some more Rose Cards featured on FreeSpirit’s website:

Buy the patterns here:

2M Pattern

Eazy Piezy Pattern

Baby Goose Pattern

Random Shuffle Pattern


Clothworks is already a big fan of Villa Rosa Rose Cards. You can find lots of Rose Card patterns on their website showcasing their gorgeous fabric collections.

Here’s an example from their Sleepy Time collection featuring the Journey Rose Card pattern. I love how they show the pattern front in the center between the 2 quilt samples. Again, this download shows a quilt shop how to kit up the pattern and the fabrics.

You can check out more of our Villa Rosa patterns at Clothworks HERE.

Buy the pattern here:

Journey Pattern

These are just some of the wonderful companies we are working with right now. Since we are making new connections all the time, I bet there will more Quilting Partners soon. So stay tuned (and don’t forget to check our Quilting Partners list on the blog for updates).

Until next Thursday —

Sew. Laugh. Repeat.


Tricia @VRD

Quilting Partners · Tips and Tricks · Tutorials · villa rosa designs

Let’s Design a Quilt Together — A Peek into My Quilt Design Process

Hello Quilty Friends!

It’s Thursday again! Here’s hoping your week has been going well. Mine has been good and fast — just the way I love my quilt projects to be! LOL!

A lot of people ask about my design process so I thought I’d tell you a little bit about my process. Keep in mind that all designers have their own way of doing things and this post is only about my process.

Sometimes it’s like I eat, sleep, and breathe quilts and quilting! Not only do I read/flip through quilt books and magazines, I also look online for new trends. I talk to my quilt friends about what they are doing. I teach a quilt class once a month. I design patterns, write instructions, make quilts, take photos of quilts. I look at and get inspired by fabric. I jot down ideas and even do rough sketches of quilt blocks (which I promptly lose most of the time). I have even been known to wake up in the middle of the night with a new idea for a quilt. Whew!

Inspiration comes in a lot of different forms for me. Sometimes I see a fabric or collection and an idea pops into my head. Sometimes I start with a favorite quilt block and a quilt develops out of that. I have quite a few quilt block references that I use for ideas. Here are a few books in my library:

The first 2 books are by Barbara Brackman. The one on the left is the first edition of the 2nd book and is out of print and can be hard to find. I have both of them and love them both. The newer edition has even more blocks in it than the first edition! Barbara Brackman is one of the most renowned quilt historians of our time! You can visit her blog, Material Culture, HERE.

I also have Barbara Brackman’s software program, Blockbase, which works with Electric Quilt. You can find Blockbase HERE.

The third book, 5500 Quilt Block Designs, is by well-known quilter and author Maggie Malone. I have only known about this book since 2021 when a friend of mine showed it to me and I was so impressed, I had to grab a copy for myself. This book is out of print so it can be harder to find as well.

I have talked about Electric Quilt software before in an earlier post, but I want to mention it again here because I really couldn’t design quilts without it! Some designers sit down with a ruler and graph paper to draft quilt patterns, but I am an Electric Quilt user because it makes designing quilts a lot easier for me. You can find Electric Quilt 8 (EQ8) software HERE.

If you are interested in designing your own quilts, I totally recommend EQ8 if you’re into computers. If you’re not into computers, graph paper and a ruler might be your new BFF.

Once I get an idea, it’s time to play — which usually means I head to my computer and EQ8. I play with blocks, try different color combinations, download different fabrics to try all before I actually make anything at all. Some designers start by making the project and then work backwards to create the pattern and instructions. I do my designing on my computer and then make the project once I know what I am going to do. At least this is what I do probably 99% of the time. That’s one of the fun things about being a designer — I can try different ways of doing things. They don’t always work out for me, but that’s okay, there’s always another way to try.

Let me show you an example of my design process. For this example, I’m gong to start with my favorite quilt block, the Shoo Fly block.

When I am starting with the quilt design before I select the actual fabrics, I usually design in red, black, white, and grey. I don’t know exactly why I do that, but I think it probably has to do with the high contrast so I get a good sense of the pattern before I add actual fabric.

So, let’s make a wall quilt using 4 Shoo Fly blocks. It will look something like this:

Hmmmmm. This doesn’t really excite me. How about you? Let’s tweak it a little bit and see what happens next. We’ll add a bit more color, too.

Okay, this is better, don’t you think? By adding a sashing between the blocks, I was able to put another Shoo Fly block in the center. I changed the colors of the larger blocks to black and grey with the smaller center Shoo Fly block in red. It definitely has a lot more interest, doesn’t it? But it’s not quite there. Let’s tweak it a little bit more, shall we?

Now we’re getting somewhere! I got rid of the grey and went with plain black. Then I added 2 narrow blocky borders so I could continue to build out with more Shoo Fly blocks. Now I think we need a border.

Yay! A finished quilt design. I added an outer plain black border and a red binding. Pretty zippy, isn’t it? Now we’re gong to add some real fabric to the design.

Here are 3 different versions of our Shoo Fly quilt using Hoffman’s Paisley in Love batik collection. Of the 3, I think the last one with the white background is my favorite. I like the contrast, but I think I need to do a little more tweaking with the design, so back to the drawing board (or EQ8).

What are your thoughts? How would you improve this design? Any ideas?

Well, I hope you enjoyed a peek into my design process. Who knows? You might see this design as a VRD Rose Card some day.

Until next Thursday —

Sew. Laugh. Repeat.


Tricia @VRD