"She seeks wool & flax, And works willingly with her hands" ~ Proverbs 31:13

February 27, 2017

Andrew's Graduation Quilt

 It took me more than a year after Andrew's graduation to deliver his finished graduation quilt so it's only right that it took me over a year to do a blog post about it. Enjoy!

A few months before his graduation I showed Andrew a picture of the quilt I was planning on doing  for his graduation quilt and asked him what he thought. He was honest and said it wasn't really his favorite. So I pulled out a binder of patterns I had been collecting and he started flipping through all the options until he found one he liked. He chose the Pattern Layer Upon Layer by Monique Dillard of Open Gate Quilts - a pattern that appeared in the August 2013 issue of American Patchwork & Quilting. We switched out the reds in the pattern for a variety of his favorite color green and left everything else the same.

When Graduation day came around I had all the individual units pieced. I been hoping to present him with the finished top so that all I had left to do was layer and quilt, but that wasn't the case. On graduation day I presented him with a wrapped shoe box with all those unit pieces stacked up and ready to be finished. He is such a gracious young man, he loved how it was looking so far and of course sent the box back home with me to finish.

Several months later I took all those pieces with me on a quilting retreat and managed to get the center portion pieced. Sadly while I was stitching away my machine quit working and forced me to stop sewing. If it hadn't have been for the machine issues I would have had the borders on it as well. But I had made good progress.

 Once I was back home I sent my machine off to the repair shop and pulled out my back up machine and got those outer borders attached. At this point I decided this was just too small and it needed an additional border to make it fit a double size bed. Which is when I discovered that I didn't have enough of the cream to add the 8 inch borders I wanted to add. So off to the quilt shop I headed praying they had more of the fabric I needed.

After buying everything the quilt shop had and ordering a bit more from an online shop I had enough to make it more of a man sized quilt.

Feathers are one of my favorite quilting motifs, but with this being a manly quilt I needed something less feminine. Open swirls would fit that bill perfectly.

 Of course once the quilting was finished and the binding complete it was time for a photo shoot.

I found the perfect piece of fabric for the backing in the scrap bin at the quilt shop. It was a rather large scrap.

When I finally delivered the finished quilt to Andrew he loved it. He even said it was worth the wait. 

Quilt Stats:

Quilt Name: "Andrew's Choice"
 Finished size: 76" x 88"
Quilt Pattern: Layer Upon Layer by Monique Dillard of Open Gate Quilts
Pattern can be found: August 2013 of American Patchwork & Quilting
Batting: Heirloom Premium Cotton 80/20 Blend
Quilting Thread: 50wt. Aurifil - Leight Beige #2310
Quilting: Free Motion Quilted using my Husqvarna Sapphire 875Q domestic sewing machine
Thank you for stopping by and sharing in my quilting journey!
Happy Quilting and God Bless,

February 17, 2017

Radical Rose {Free Motion Quilting}

In June 2015 I had the privilege of Free Motion Quilting (FMQ) this amazing quilt which was appliqued and pieced by a the beautiful quilter Joan. She had taken Aunt 'Reen's class on Modern Machine Applique where she created this amazing beauty, called Radical Rose & Reel.  Joan had also taken my Beginners Free Motion Quilting class and decided that with practice she would one day be ready to do beautiful work, but since that would take time she brought her Radical Rose Quilt to me and asked me to do my thing. She gave me complete freedom to quilt it as I wished.  Talk about pressure! But I was in awe of being given this quilt top to enhance. This was a quilt I desperately wanted to make simply to be able to quilt it and here I was being entrusted with Joan's finished quilt top.

Of course I started with layering the quilt sandwich using my favorite pin anchor Pinmoors.
Then I was off!! I started by out lining all of the applique pieces and both sides of the thin pink border. Once everything was outlined I began doing what I call Free Form quilting.

 What is Free Form Quilting, you ask? 
Free Form Quilting is the swirls, paisleys, pebbles, and so on that I quilt without a predetermined plan where each motif flows into the next. It's my favorite type of quilting to do on a quilt top. I'm always excited to come across a top that calls out for this type of quilting.

 Once the Free Form Quilting was complete it was on to the outer Hour Glass border.
I didn't want to over quilt this outer border, thinking that the center Rose and Reel needed to stay the star of the show. So my original plan was to do a simple Stitch-In-The-Ditch (SID) along all the seams of that outer border. But once that was complete two things were obvious; 1) the SID work caused the white sashing to puff up and draw your attention to them and away from the center medallion and 2) it appeared very plain without any quilting, especially sitting next to all the quilting in the center of the quilt.  I spent several days contemplating what I could do in this border to calm down the puffiness and make it not so plain. Finally I was able to see the solution, Ribbon Candy in the white sashing and graduated loops in the triangles. I was very pleased with how it turned out. 

Testing quilting design with wax paper and a purple air erasable marking pen

Then in September the following year, on my birthday no less,  I received this note and photo from Joan:
 "I wanted to share with you that a wall hanging that I made from a class on modern machine applique by 'Aunt Reen and you quilted won First Place in the Traditional Mixed category. The show was the Coastal Quilters Guild "Harvest of Colors 2016 Show in Santa Barbara, CA. Comments made on the judging form stated "Individualized quilting motifs greatly enhance this quilt". Thank you so much for helping show case my wall hanging. Joan"

So happy for Joan to have received First place and a blue ribbon for her work and honored to have had the privilege of quilting it for her.  Reading the judges words felt pretty good too! 

Quilt Details & Stats:

Quilt Name: "Joan's Radical Rose & Reel"
 Finished size: 42" x 42"
Quilt Pattern:Radical Rose & Reel by Collector with a Needle available HERE
Batting: Quilter's Dream 100% Cotton
Quilting Thread: 50wt. Aurifil White #2024
Quilting: Free Motion Quilted using my Husqvarna Sapphire 875Q domestic sewing machine
 Thank you for stopping by and sharing my quilting journey!
God Bless and Happy Quilting!
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