Block Heads 3

Block 12 – ‘Hampshire Star’

Welcome Block Headers!

Let me introduce myself;  I’m Janet and live in Hampshire, England with my husband, Tony, our teenage sons and a dog called Betty. Tony runs our quilting design business and is affectionately known as ‘Chief of Everything’ because that’s what he does!

Betty, Janet and the Chief of Everything at the studio

We are lucky to live an hour from London and the seaside and can be in open countryside in half an hour. Hampshire has also had some very famous residents including Jane Austen who wrote ‘Pride and Prejudice’ and made a quilt here:

Jane Austen’s House Museum in Chawton, Hampshire

Equally famous but completely fictitious residents also live close by at Highclere Castle (the real Downton Abbey)

Highclere Castle - home to Downton Abbey residents

It’s a very nice place to call home!

You can see what we get up to, our beautiful studio and all my creative projects on Facebook and Instagram. And do join our email club and get a free block of the month! This year’s quilt is called ‘Twenty Twenty’ and currently looks like this:

Janet Clare -TwentyTwenty - First Three Sections - Sign up!

And now, on to the reason you’re all here! I’m really enjoying seeing all your blocks on the Block Heads Facebook group page and one thing I keep noticing is how very different the same block looks depending on the placement of the fabrics chosen. You can really change the whole effect of a block just by switching the tonal placements.

So, I thought it would be fun to cut my squares and make my half square triangles (HST) and then keep re-arranging them to see what variations I could come up with. I am using my upcoming ‘Geometry’ fabric collection which we hope will be available to purchase later this month (April 2020). You need four distinct tones to make the most striking blocks.

I have used the same set of units for each the following designs though in some cases I have shuffled and rotated some of the squares and HSTs so two of the layouts do differ a little from the one shown in the pattern. Here they are:

Block Heads 3 - Block 12 - 'Hampshire Star' -  Layout 1
This follows the pattern layout
Block Heads 3 - Block 12 - 'Hampshire Star' -  Layout 2
and so does this one
Block Heads 3 - Block 12 - 'Hampshire Star' -  Layout 3
In this layout, some squares and HSTs have been shuffled and rotated
Block Heads 3 - Block 12 - 'Hampshire Star' -  Layout 4
This layout differs from pattern too, but still uses all the same units!

In the end, I settled on this design!

Block Heads 3 - Block 12 - 'Hampshire Star' -  Final Layout
This is close to the unit layout in pattern, with just eight HSTs rotated!

I’ve popped this onto my design wall in the studio along with the other Block Head 3 blocks and my ‘Twenty Twenty’ quilt-along.

Janet Clare's Studio Design Wall

I’m also thinking about making a ‘Hampshire Star’ quilt, I will post some ideas when I have given it a bit more thought. You can follow my progress on Instagram.

Thank you for being a Moda Block Head!

All in a Row Again

November 14th, 2017 | Other | 191 Comments















Once again, the Moda designers and Martingale have combined creative forces to bring you ‘All in a Row’ volume 2- a book packed with original and fun ideas for row- by- row quilts!

My row was inspired by the two beautiful Oak trees we have growing in our back garden (that sentence conjures up images of vast rolling acres, doesn’t it? So not the case!).

The trees provide shade and shelter for so many birds, bugs and bats and are such a pleasure to live alongside in our busy, town garden.







All proceeds from the book are being donated to a very worthy cause, ‘Give Kids the World Village‘ which gives very sick children and their families a much needed free holiday.

Give Kids the World Village logo420w

Quilting inspiration and doing good in the world all by treating yourself to a new book!

To join in the fun and have a chance to win some of the goodies generously donated by Moda and Martingale be sure to visit the All in a Row Facebook page.

And I have a free e-book of ‘All in a Row Again’ for one lucky reader- just leave me a comment!

Now, pop over to my Moda friends Corey and Pat for more fun and chances to win!



And the winner is…

February 21st, 2017 | Other | No Comments

GiveawayI so enjoyed reading all your comments about the amazing Splendid Sampler learning curve!

The winner (as chosen by the random number generator website) of the Aubade charm squares is comment 76 from Erika.

Congratulations Erika!


Aurifil Designer Challenge

February 18th, 2017 | Other | No Comments

The Aurifil designer for February is Maureen Cracknell, pop over to Auribuzz to hear all about her and to download your free copy of this lovely tulip block ‘Dutch Treat’.




This year all the designers are being given a colour from the colour wheel rainbow to be inspired by. Maureen was given purple.


I made my block yesterday using my brand new ‘Aubade’ fabrics.


Thread AubadeFabric


After all these years I’m still amazed by how different a block can look in different colours!


DutchQuarter DutchTreat


When you make your Dutch Treat block, share a photo on Pat Sloan’s website and you could win a fabulous Aurifil thread pack!


I designed a cat block for January. I think 2017’s Aurifil Designer Challenge quilt is going to be stunning!



The Splendid Sampler

February 14th, 2017 | Other | 148 Comments

blocks febHappy Splendid Sampler Day!


Exactly a year ago today we all started on a splendidly challenging patchwork adventure.


Where ever did that year go? It’s not every year you get two presents a week, but that is exactly what happened during our Splendid Sampler year!


I have made about 40 of the blocks and some have been a real challenge I must say! This is block 100, designed by Kate Spain.


I am going to make all 100 blocks (in my own sweet time) and am looking forward to completing my very first sampler quilt.


100If you are just learning about the Splendid Sampler, don’t worry it’s never too late to get started!


Join the Facebook group and buy yourself a copy of the book and you’ll be a ‘Splenderette’ in no time!


Now, I have a little giveaway for you all:


Giveawaytell me something the Splendid Sampler quilt-along has taught you


and in a week I’ll pick a random name to win a 5″ charm pack of my latest fabric collection for Moda ‘Aubade: a song to the dawn’.


‘Aubade’ was inspired by the sunrise and the promise of a whole new day, everyday.

I designed three quilts specifically for this collection and here they are enjoying the dawn on a Texan beach.

QuiltsDawnI also designed an embroidery thread collection with Lecien which matches my favourite colours and fabric lines beautifully.

My ‘Sky’ embroidery floss collection will be available from quilt shops soon- pop in and ask for it!


And there will be many more chances to win- pop over to the Splendid Sampler to find out more!



Aurifil Designer of the month

January 15th, 2017 | Other | 2 Comments

me420wHello and welcome!

I am pleased to tell you that I am Aurifil’s designer of the month for January 2017. The year is off to a great start!

Every year Aurifil and Pat Sloan invite twelve designers to create a special, unique block for you and host a quilt-a- long for the whole year.

And if last years is anything to go by (and it is!) we are in for a treat, and here’s the best part: it’s free too.


aurifil1420wI’m going to be stitching along with you all this year and am really looking forward to seeing what the other eleven blocks look like!

Now, please pop over to Aurifil to see my January block!

Pat’s mega fun book tour

November 22nd, 2016 | Other | 6 Comments

machinequiltlogo410Hello and a very warm welcome to my stop on Pat’s mega fun book tour!

I’ve known Pat for a few years now and she is one of the kindest, generous, supportive and encouraging quilters I know.

Pat has written another (her 33rd!) book which sets out to teach us all how to machine quilt.

Even if you have been happily machine quilting for years this book will still teach you a thing or two, and if you’re just starting out do yourself a favour and get yourself a copy!

I thought you might like to see my very first attempt at machine quilting. Far from perfect!

But, I enjoyed every stitch and I have a warm and beautiful quilt to sleep under.

Just remember we all have to start somewhere and perfection is vastly over-rated in my opinion!


Nowadays free motion quilting is my favourite! I love to write and draw with my sewing machine.

Pat has a great chapter on free motion quilting which is easy to do, and needs minimal special equipment (just a darning foot) but requires lots of practice and patience.

Practice and patience- the answer to pretty much anything.

freemo410freemofaces410Head on over to all these other lovely people to learn more about ‘Pat Sloan’s teach me to Machine Quilt’:

and then pop over to Pat herself for your chance to win a copy of the book.


And the winner is…

August 8th, 2016 | Patchwork and quilting | 1 Comment

Header 420wIt was so much fun to read all your lovely comments, some from old friends and lots from new to me ‘Splenderettes’! Welcome one and all.

And now to announce the winner of my ‘More Hearty Good Wishes’ charm pack…. drum roll please….

Giveaway50goes to comment number 19 (as chosen by the random number generator

Congratulations Syke B!!

Email me your address and I’ll get the fabric in the post to you as soon as I can!

Top of the Hill

August 6th, 2016 | Patchwork and quilting | 337 Comments

TopoftheHill1Can you believe we’re already halfway through our Splendid adventure?

Well, I’ve got around 30 blocks made so far and am really pleased with them.

Some have been rather challenging to say the least and all of them have made me go slowly and actually use my ‘textbook’ techniques as learnt many moons ago.

Here’s my version of the bonus ‘Top of the Hill’ block which you can download at The Splendid Sampler website. 

Next week we are off to the largest quilt show in Europe- The Festival of Quilts which is always inspiring, exhausting and great fun.

Come and say ‘hello’ to me and Chief of Everything on Stand G4.

This year it will be even better as the English Splenderettes (and any other nationalities who happen to be there of course!) are meeting in the Wetherspoons pub (where else?!) at 1pm Saturday 13th August.

Bring a Splendid block with you so we can find each other!

Giveaway50And now, all you need to do is leave me a little comment for your chance to win one of my ‘More Hearty Good Wishes’ 5 inch charm packs (hard to find now!). 

I’m so pleased to be a small part of this wonderful and generous project- aren’t you?

Thanks Pat and Jane xx

A little tip for you

Soap420wI like to use a dry piece of soap to mark up quilting lines on dark fabric.

The drawn lines show up clearly, don’t rub away like chalk can and don’t harm the fabric in anyway either.

You can easily sharpen the soap with an ordinary table knife and if your soap happens to be rose scented too all the better.

Simple, traditional and thrifty!