It’s done!! Last week, I finished up hand stitching the binding of the Arkansas Traveler quilt. I am in love with how it turned out. (For those that are new to the blog, you can find previous posts about this quilt here, here and here.)
A little backstory on this quilt…my aunt asked me to make something for my cousin and his wife who were married late last year. The design and colors were all left up to me (yes!) I have loved the Arkansas Traveler block ever since we made them in the Summer Sampler Series. They are a bit of work with the diamonds and the paper piecing, but they are just beautiful blocks.
When I was brainstorming layout ideas, I was inspired by the fact that this quilt was for a newly married couple, so symbolizing the bond of marriage was important to me. This layout is a nod to more traditional wedding quilts like a Double Wedding Ring or Irish Chain.
Measuring 72″ x 96″, I’m not sure if this is the largest quilt I’ve ever made, but it is close. It’s definitely the heaviest. Usually I use Quilter’s Dream Request Loft batting (the lowest loft), but for this one I used a slightly loftier batting, the Select Loft. The quilt is headed to Montana and I figured it was colder there so a thicker quilt would be nice.
The size and weight did make for a challenge when quilting. There were more than a few moments when I wondered if I should have sent it out to a long arm. I stitched horizontal lines, spaced randomly between 1/4″ and 3/4″ apart. I went through 12 bobbins and each of the 8 rows of blocks took about 1 hour, 15 minutes. I tried to quilt 2 rows each day. It was quite a workout!
The diamonds are all scrappy fabrics from my stash, but the neutral is Free Spirit Designer Solid in Sand Dune and the backing and binding is Submarines and Seaweed in Aqua from Tula Pink’s Saltwater line.
I’m heading to ship it out today. It’s hard to say goodbye but I’m really happy to have created something special for someone in my family.
April 22, 2013 78 Comments
I have been waiting to share this quilt with you for months…8 months to be exact! When editing my photos for this post last night, I noted the datestamp on my quilt photo was August 6, 2012. I can’t believe it’s been that long! I remember bringing my fabric and sewing machine on summer vacation last year, working to finish this quilt up.
Last Spring, Fons & Porter asked if I was interested in designing a quilt for a future issue, similar to the “style” of my Cutting Edge quilt which had been displayed at Spring Quilt Market. Well, that was a no brainer for me – of course I would! I was lucky enough to work again with the wonderful designer solids by Free Spirit.
Well, all these months later, I am excited to share with you that my quilt is in the now-available May/June 2013 issue of Fons & Porter’s Love of Quilting. You can even buy a kit of my quilt, how cool is that!
This quilt measures 60″ x 72″ and the stars are all paper pieced for perfect accuracy. I quilted mine with a nice meandering design all over. I just love the solids and stars, the colors…I can’t wait to get it back in the mail!
Fabrics used in this quilt: Free Spirit Designer Solids in Lemon, Peach Blush, Chartreuse, Caribbean Sea, Light Jade, Jade, Sand Dune, Dogwood, Dark Coral, Flamingo, Winter White.
I thought it would be fun to share with you my original mock up for the quilt when I was in the design phase. (I do most of my design work in Photoshop).
I think the finished quilt is pretty close to the mockup.
And in weekend news, I’ll be speaking this Sunday (4/21) at 2:00 at the Chicago Modern Quilt Guild. They meet at St. Peter’s Church at 500 Hannah, Forest Park, IL. Just a little talk about my journey through quilting, my style, what inspires me, my design process. Hopefully people will find it interesting. I always enjoy enthusiastic nodders, so if you go, you know, nod along. lol I’ll also be bringing my newly finished Arkansas Traveler Quilt to share, which I haven’t posted here yet. Is that any motivation?
Visitors just have to pay $5, so I hope you will stop by!
April 19, 2013 67 Comments
Very quick update today on my Arkansas Traveler quilt. I finished the blocks! Sewing the four quadrants together for the blocks actually went pretty fast. I think it took about 2 hours to assemble 24 blocks.
I’ve started laying out the blocks for the final top. Sorry about the bad phone photo! I still need to decide on a backing and order that, but things are coming right along!
March 25, 2013 18 Comments
This post is going to be all over the place. But that’s not always a bad thing, right? I’ve been busy sewing over the last couple of weeks. Not really finishing anything but making good progress.
First up, my Arkansas Traveler quilt. After lots of cutting, sewing diamonds, paper piecing those diamonds, trimming, trimming and trimming, I have 96+ blocks! It really feels like a huge milestone.
You can find a tutorial to make this block on Lee of Freshly Pieced’s site. Those of you with an eagle eye might notice my template is a little different than the one from the Summer Sampler Series. I’m trying out something new Lee came up with, less seams, but maybe a little trickier to assemble the final block, depending on how you feel about sewing together shapes other than squares.
I know I said I wasn’t going to share my final design until I was done. I guess I lied. Here’s the plan! This weekend/next week I’m hoping to finish the quilt top assembly.
As a bit of a personal reward for finishing all those components, I cut into the little pack of Liberty of London Lifestyle fabric I picked up at Quilt Con.
I knew I wanted to pair it with some Essex Linen in Natural. I thought it would look super cute as one of Anna’s Open Wide Pouches. Great pattern, as usual! I made the smallest size because I only had a 10″ zipper on hand. (I bought my metal zipper from Zip It on Etsy.)
The inside is Stamped by Ellen Luckett Baker for Kokka.
This week I also performed a little surgery on my local Modern Quilt Guild challenge quilt top. You can read up on the sadness of unmatching white fabric here.
I finished the top yesterday (happy dance!) and will share the finished quilt next week. That is a promise – it’s due Thursday!
I also have been lucky enough to receive some new fabric in the mail this week.
Windham was kind enough to send some of Lotta Jansdotter’s Glimma Canvas for me to check out. I don’t think I’ve ever worked with canvas so I’m pretty excited to try something out. They also sent a charm pack of Ride, Julia Rothman’s second collection. I seriously love the little bicycle wheels. My son has already claimed this for his own, so I’m thinking of using it in some way to make him a tote bag for the library.
I also had a very happy surprise from Moda Fabrics – three layer cakes of upcoming collections.
These are S’More Love by Eric and Julie Comstock, Simply Style by Vanessa of V and Co, and Honeysweet by Fig Tree & Co. (Seriously, I don’t know how I got so lucky!)
I decided to immediately cut into Vanessa’s fabric because, well, I think she’s pretty fun. I found a block in 163 Favorite Patchwork Patterns : Japanese Craft Book, an awesome book I purchased a few months ago from The Workroom in Canada.
I had some questions on Instagram about this book. It is all in Japanese. There are diagrams that help give ideas about block assembly, but there are no directions or sizes in English. If you like a challenge and are good at figuring things out, this is the book for you. I do, and really, what do you have to lose except a little bit of fabric? Keeps my old mind sharp.
So anyway, I picked this cool design…
And started to layout a couple blocks…
And then something funny happened. I made these up at pretty much the exact same time Lee was writing up her post to announce her planned Bloom Bloom Pow Quilt Along with a very similar block! Yesterday morning we had a good laugh about how we must be totally on the save wave length after writing the book together. So! If you like the block, are interested in making the block, you are in luck because Lee’s about to start her quilt along and will have tutorials for you. Her block just has some great additional shading.
Phew! I hope some of you made it through all that! Next week is Spring Break here. (As I ignore the -4 degree wind chill and snow outside…) I’m not really sure if that means I’ll get more sewing done (not driving the kids all over the place) or less (more play time with the kids!). We’ll see. My newly 4 year old wants to put on a kid art show in the house, so we have big crafting plans. Very exciting! Have a great weekend everyone!
March 22, 2013 36 Comments