Wednesday, 28 October 2015

Blogger's Quilt Festival | Marsala

It's that time again!  Twice a year (coinciding with Quilt Market) Amy at Amy's Creative Side hosts the Blogger's Quilt Festival.  Thanks Amy!  If you're visiting via the festival, welcome and thanks for stopping by!

This time around, I'm submitting my newly completed Marsala quilt in the hand-quilted category.

I designed this quilt featuring an oversized (30" square) Young Man's Fancy block as the focal point, with HSTs radiating and floating outward.  The colour palette is inspired by Pantone's 2015 colour of the year - Marsala.  Marsala lends itself to traditional elements like the Young Man's Fancy block, but I chose to freshen it up by introducing lots of negative space.  Which, if you look closely isn't entirely white.  I broke up the background with a super-pale greeny-grayish-blue solid as a complement to the Marsala and other peachy/coral hues.  The quilt was bound in the same pale blue.  From the beginning, the fabric pull has reminded me of a crisp autumn morning.

So, about that hand-quilting.  I have to confess that my original intention was never to hand-quilt this baby.  My plan all along was to finish it quickly with straight-line quilting, list on Etsy and move on.  I even machine quilted a 9"W section before I decided that I just wasn't feeling it.  So I ripped out all that machine stitching, which was painful!  

I recreated my original straight-line quilting plan, but added diagonal lines along the HST seams, and offset by an inch on either side of the diagonals.  I really love the texture this created, plus following the random HST placement resulted in a beautiful asymmetry to the quilting motif, which also supports the asymmetry of the piecing. 

I'm so glad I abandoned my original quilting plan and hand quilted instead. I'm much happier with this result.  And there's something so joyful and meditative about hand-quilting - at least for me anyways. 

I hope you're enjoying the Blogger's Quilt Festival! It really is a treat to see so many talented people sharing their best work!


P.S. This is also my first finish for the 2015 Finish Along - Quarter 4

Wednesday, 14 October 2015

WIP | Midnight Mystery Quilt

Since we're at the halfway point in Meadow Mist Design's Midnight Mystery Quilt Along, I thought it would be a good time to share an update on my progress so far.

The concept of a mystery quilt is both liberating and terrifying for me.  As a bit of a control freak, not knowing how this will turn out is a touch unsettling.  But, I'm actually enjoying seeing this quilt slowly come together and am so intrigued to see how it will turn out.

June and July were all about fabric selection and cutting.  In keeping with the midnight theme, I chose a twilight-ish palette, with Essex Linen in Flax, Kona Berry along with an assortment of similarly hued prints, some low volume fabrics with a splash of metalllic, and Kona Coal.  

In August, we created Flying Geese units...

In September, we created Square-in-a-Square blocks...

And this month, the instructions called for some jumbo Courthouse Steps blocks.  

Pretty fun, eh?  

If you're interested in joining in with the quilt along, it's not too late to catch up.  You can find all the instructions, and sign up for the monthly updates right here.

Linking up with Freshly Pieced for WIP Wednesday!

Happy Wednesday!

Sunday, 11 October 2015

2015 Finish Along - Q4 Goals

Can you believe it's already the fourth quarter of 2015? Where did this year go?  Many thanks to Adrienne at On The Windy Side for running the show this year!

Up until now, I've taken the approach of listing every single one of my WIPS - even the long term projects that I have no hope of finishing.  With only one finish in each of the last two quarters, I'm thinking there might be a flaw in that approach.  Perhaps a little more focus is in order.  Plus, with vacation and birthdays and Christmas and so on, it's not likely that this will be a terribly productive three months anyways.

So, here's my new, improved and shorter list of WIPs for the final few months of 2015...

1.  Pantone Challenge Quilt:  Yes, I'm aware that the Pantone colour of the year challenge wrapped up back in April.  I decided to hand-quilt this one, which has been so very enjoyable, but has slowed things down a touch.  I'm hoping to be finished with this quilt before Pantone announces the 2016 colour of the year!

2.  Vintage HST Quilt: This quilt is in the fairly early stages, but it's been coming together quickly.

3.  EPP Medallion: With the return of colder weather, I'm ready to get back into this project.  This is my long-shot WIP of the quarter...It's unlikely that I'll finish this one, but you never know.

There you have it, a manageable list for Q4.  
I'm off to link up my list, and scope out what everyone else is working on!

Happy Quarter 4!