It is hard to believe I have half dozen finished quilts behind me already, having jumped back into sewing just under 2 years ago. Working with color, fabric, design and creating have been fun for me given I work with numbers all day.
This quilt was inspired by the Sun Showers I experienced most of the summer growing up in Connecticut. It was a gift for a very dear friend who mentored and guided me during high school.
Her favorite colors are blue and yellow, and so this project began. The blues are Porcelain Blue by Deborah Edwards for Northcott. I picked up the yellow florals at Joanne’s as fillers.
After countless patterns up on the design wall, I went for pinwheels as the main block construct, with a corner of sunshine followed by a shower of rain. One can’t really go wrong with pinwheels.
It was particularly fun to work with dark, medium and lights with this quilt. I had to head to the store a few times to fill in gaps in the fabrics I needed but hey, adding to my stash is more fun than I anticipated.
My long arm quilter did a beautiful job on the quilt. Stars and wavy lines like a misty rain…perfect for the quilt and a beautiful play on the American Dreams, by Beth Logan for Henry Glass backing.
I used an extra set of HSTs to make the label on the back, which I embroidered by hand with standard DMC embroidery floss. The label I sewed on with Sulky invisible thread.
Here’s my little man, helping hold the quilt up on a huge granite rock in the woods. We had a beautiful sunny day, with rolling clouds casting shadows on us. This was the afternoon before it snowed which you see in the other pictures.
I loved sending this off to my friend, and hated parting with it. It is bold and peaceful at the same time. Might be another one I have to make for myself. 🙂
As I began venturing into quilting, my husband gently questioned me (a few times) on where was his quilt? I started it back in October WIP Wednesday 2016 10 26 based on his fabric picks, and went with a classic granny square pattern I found at Blue Elephant Stitches. Her pattern was so easy to follow and constructing this quilt was a breeze.
The blocks came alive, ripe with bright and cheery solid Kona colors including Basil Green, Tangerine, Corn Yellow and Burgundy. The background was with Kona Black.
I straight line quilted it on the diagonal and chose wide lines rather than add a match stick type of quilting. The quilt has a 3/4 inch batting and my thought was fewer lines would keep it fluffy for my honey.
The Carrie Bloomston Newsprint fabric for Windham was perfect for this quilt backing. It was a warm and retro choice; now my husband doesn’t have to leave his recliner to read the paper. I chose eclectic fabrics for the binding, one with colorful old soda caps, one with a travel theme and one with dog paws (each from Joanne’s Fabrics). I sewed them together randomly and they popped nicely against the black background fabric.
Quilt finished at an impressive 80 x 90. My husband is 6’5′ so we planned carefully to make sure it covered his frame!
He loves the quilt and it was worth dragging him to the store to pick out his own fabrics. I fear it may never have been made otherwise.
I loved making this quilt, despite my love / hate relationship with the very teeny tiny stars for the last couple of blocks. It all started last summer. Pixie Summer Home Quilt-A-Long.
The cloud like quilting creates a beautiful look around the houses with just enough depth to stand out from the trees and houses.
The Farmhouse fabric, by Fig Tree (Joanna Febueroa for Moda) was a perfect choice for this quilt. Colorful, playful and neighborhoody!
See those stars…the smallest is an inch, plus or minus a fraction. Small = harder to work with than I thought they would be. I persevered (I even started an ender / leader project now making small stars from leftover triangles from other projects – yes, really I did).
A blustery windy day (where a cloud rolled behind me just as I started to take pictures) made for a natural look at the back of the quilt.
These red berried trees are a natural fit for the backing. Kind of like a tree farm in the backyard, if you know what I mean.
The quilt finished at roughly 51 x 63. I can see this pattern modified as a table runner, wall hanging or even a set of placemats. I can’t wait to use it again.
I am excited to have wrapped up the Meadow Mystery Quilt-A-Long while sharpening both my FMQ and HMQ skills. The entire QAL, sponsored by Cheryl at Meadow Mist Design was a great time. The pace was perfect for me as a full time working Mom (I know you can relate!). And let me mention it was really fun to anticipate each month’s blocks rather than know what was coming. I simply loved the mystery component of it. The QAL started back in July (see my post where I talked about color inspiration and getting started – Meadow Mystery Quilt-along).
This was the first time I made a quilt from fabric purchased entirely online. It came together very nicely considering I selected the colors based on very small thumbnail pics. The fabrics chosen were:
- Edyta’s Essentials Batiks, Lemon Bliss
- Sticks & Stones Batiks, Ivy Rust by Laundry Basket Quilts for Moda
- The Reclaimed West, Rock Grey by Timeless Treasures
- Sound of the Woods 2, Branches Glacier Metallic by Kathrine Lovell for Robert Kaufman
- Whispers Muslin Mates, Take Flight Feather by Studio M for Moda
- Urban Scandinavian, Black and White Floral by Kirstyn Cogan for P&B Textiles
- Binding: Thicket – Dashes Black Natural by Gingiber for Moda Fabrics
For the quilting, I did a free hand orange peel for the border rectangles, a curved bird line for the light gray fabric (which my son called out as looking like clouds) and a free hand sets of florals for the black rectangles in the main squares of the quilt and the black half triangle blocks in the corners. I also free hand quilted winter trees and limbs throughout the lighter fabrics.
I used a Tonga Batiks 106′ wide Garden Confetti Stones for the backing which subtly pops the quilting silhouettes.
The FMQ was so fun and engaging once I got the swing of it. I look forward to more FMQ, though I am humbled by how time consuming it is. If I had more time, there were many more spots to fill in with fun FMQ.
I love hand made labels. I used the Lemon Bliss batik, and practiced “Take Flight” with my darning foot. It didn’t look so good. So Plan B, a simple hand embroidered version which I then sewed in as I added the binding. Blends in perfectly.
The quilt finished at 72 x 72 with the borders. I look forward to next year’s Mystery Quilt. I’m delighted with how this quilt came out!
I had a great time making this quilt, as well as gifting it to my high school best friend. We share many many years of memory, and I was so excited to give this to her. A piece of my heart to hers, and well received as she loved it!
Cozying up with the various shades of gray. The backing is a fun splash of color against the otherwise pretty low volume quilt. I used 20+ gray fabrics of light, medium and dark tones with 10 varied white fabrics, whipped up many HSTs and played around until I fell in love with this variation.
What are girls to do…celebrate in NYC with Sugar Mountain and Champagne!
The swirls in the quilting soften the overall quilt up quite nicely.
The HSTs really look like diamonds on point here. I really need to make me one of these.
I love hand made labels. Clearly this isn’t my best but I love it just the same.
I’m officially addicted to quilting. And happy I have a few more almost ready for posting!
Yay, a finished quilt! The bright colors, varied butterflies and varied backgrounds made for a very happy recipient.
And I am proud that I went for true FMQ on this one…my very first. It was hard, getting the rhythm between needle speed and moving the quilt around, learning to deal with the drag, the tempo, etc. But I did it…and I gained the confidence to do more of it. I am actually really excited to be finishing the Meadow Mystery QAL in the next few months so I can gain more experience and practice. This is not a perfect piece in more ways than one (despite getting the points right), but a proud finish!
Not always even, and not perfectly rounded either. Who knew 24 hour disappearing ink can disappear in minutes which really throws a wrench into the FMquilting roadmap?
This quilt also gave me the opportunity to explore and play with threads, learning what count pops against a background versus what blends in. Looks like a long learning curve ahead for me.
While my ego didn’t want me to post clear images of my beginner’s FMQ work, the better side of me said we all have to start somewhere and we includes me. So here’s my stake in the ground that I can go back to some day and smile at, as the quilt I learned to FMQ on.
Merry Christmas Dear Bon. So happy you loved it. Beginner talent and all.
You know the people you love that have every.thing.they.need.want. That usually includes all my favorite people. I found just the right gift for them that I knew they would love and appreciate being hand made!
Potpourri of Color
Back in early November, my gal friends and I met for our annual holiday crafting party. We had decided to make appliqued tea towels (WIP Wednesday 2016-11-16), and we bought tons of 1/4 yards of fabric to work with. Thus picking fabrics for the trays was easy enough given I hadn’t put the crafting day fabric away yet.
The project was easy – all in maybe 2 hours. You can find the tutorial for it right here: Fabric Tray Tutorial. The most fun part for me was working on my FMQ skills particularly on one of the trays which had great medallion shapes I could use as my lines. I didn’t get a picture of that side of the tray though…it is the tray below on the right where you can just see the medallions.
I practiced writing in the smaller tray – Love came out too cute.
I am looking forward to giving these away. And to making more of them for me!