Design Wall: My Year of the BOM


Anissa ArnoldName: Anissa Arnold
Title: Associate Editor, Quilty Magazine
I live in: Denver, CO
I started quilting: I started quilting and playing hockey in 1997, soon after I moved to Colorado, when a new friend of mine introduced me to both hobbies – I never would have thought, right?
My home life: I live with my little dynamic duo, Jasper and Izzy. Jasper is a Jack Russell/Dachshund mix whose first family couldn’t manage his energy level, so he became a part of my family. Izzy is a Terrier mix (this is as close of a guess as I can manage) and she came from a shelter in New Mexico. Though Jasper wasn’t fond of Izzy initially (and by “initially”, I mean for the first year!), he now finds her to be a great companion.


Jasper & Izzy

What I’ve Made: You name it! Every quilting related project I see makes me think of something new I want to sew. I am a self-proclaimed quilt-a-holic and, without a doubt, a fabric addict. I have been sewing since I was a teen and made a living for many years sewing custom-made home decor.

What I’m Making:
2018, My Year of the BOM

I am in over my head with block of the months (BOMs) this year! I got too excited and just kept signing up. I signed up for 4 BOMs total — and there is no way that I will finish them all on schedule. In fact, I’m behind on every single one of them right now. Well, that’s not entirely true. The fourth BOM I signed up for just started in May, so I’m on-schedule with that one…LOL! AND I have yet to finish a 2016 BOM and a 2017 BOM. Yes, I have lost my quilting mind!

I thought I’d take you on a visual “tour” of my BOMs in progress…

Happy Days (2016)


Happy Days

2016 was the year I fell in love with Sarah Fielke’s BOMs. Happy Days BOM was the first BOM I’d done in many years. I’m not personally a big fan of purchasing BOMs that come with the fabrics included because I have a HUGE stash of fabric and choosing the fabrics for the quilt is one of my favorite parts of the process. Happy Days was perfect for me since it was a “pattern only” BOM. I was given a black and white sketch of roughly what the finished quilt will look like and I designed from there. This quilt top is nearly complete— it still gets a pieced and hand appliqued border. I was planning on working on the border over Memorial Day weekend but I got invited to go to the “world’s largest bouncy house” – and, really, how could I pass that up?! My excuse for not having this quilt completed yet is that I started it halfway through 2016 and then this happened…

Down The Rabbit Hole (2017)


Down the Rabbit Hole

my-year-of-the-bom-down-the-rabbit-hole-bordersSarah introduced her 2017 BOM, Down the Rabbit Hole, and of course, I had to join in on this one as well. I was keeping right on schedule with this one up until August 2017 when I started working here, at The Quilting Company. My sewing time got filled up with work-related projects and my BOM progress suffered. I haven’t really worked on this one since last fall. It was getting a little too “red” overall for my liking, so I’m working to add some cooler colors into the rest of the quilt. I have one huge border of flowers, rabbits, birds and bees to hand applique and then Down The Rabbit Hole is ready for quilting. Sadly though, this is on the back burner as I try to catch up on these beauties…

Simple Folk (2018)


Simple Folk

my-year-of-the-bom-simple-folk-blocks-1Yet again, Sarah Fielke drew me in, and this year she decided to offer two BOMs (yikes!). The first one started in January and is called Simple Folk. It’s a combination of machine piecing and hand applique. With the arrival of summer, I anticipate doing a lot of hand sewing while out camping, hanging in the woods with the boys while they dirt bike (unless they finally talk me into getting on a bike myself!), by the pool, on the patio, or really anywhere outdoors. So at the moment I am focusing on prepping applique blocks so that I have plenty of portable projects. I don’t have any piecing done for this one yet.


The Grasshopper (2018)


The Grasshopper

The Grasshopper is Sarah’s second BOM for 2018 and, of course, I signed up for that one too! However, I never read the details so I didn’t realize it was meant to be entirely hand pieced (oops!). This won’t be happening — I’m going to machine piece as much of this quilt as I can and then hand applique the rest. I have the perfect fabrics for the background, but that’s as far as I’ve gone on this one – however, this BOM started at the end of February so I’m only 2 months— woohoo!

Golden Days (2018)


my-year-of-the-bom-golden-daysLast year I discovered Jen Kingwell’s Delilah BOM too late in the year to participate. So last fall, when I saw her 2018 Golden Days BOM being promoted, I signed up right away. This BOM started in March 2018 so I’m only 1 month behind on this one! I have no image of what the completed quilt will look like, so this one is sort of a “mystery” quilt. The first blocks I have worked on have been hand applique but I see some piecing in the upcoming months. Golden Days could be ordered as a BOM with fabrics included or without. I went without, so I’m getting the patterns and the templates mailed to me each month and I’m using my own fabrics.

Tula’s Bloomers (2018)


Tula’s Bloomers is a limited edition BOM assembled by Pink Door Fabrics. There were only 30-something slots for this BOM and I was lucky enough to get one. However, here’s where things get really crazy…it’s English Paper Pieced. On top of all my hand applique BOMs, I signed up for an EPP project to top off my year of BOMs. Tula’s Bloomers is an all-inclusive BOM so I’m receiving fabrics with this one as well. I got a bit scared when I open the first box of goodies last week and saw all of the parts. AND I’ve never EPP’d before. This one will be an adventure. I’m sure I can do it – but finishing on time seems highly unlikely.

So here’s to the second half of my year of BOMs! I have great optimism that I will make good progress in the upcoming months and I choose to believe that I will complete at least one or two of these this year. I just have to remember to reign in my impulses to sign up for more BOMs come January 2019!


Comment (1)

  • Marilyn S

    At the AQS quilt show in Des Moines IA in 2015 (I think it was)I bought my first BOM. It was a a king sized EPP project. I enjoyed doing it and I did finish it about a year later. 1600 +/- pieces, all fussy cut, glue basted, and hand sewn. I don’t own a king bed but I loved the kit and the colors.

    Enjoy your project!

    June 7, 2018 at 6:08 am

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