Quilt for The Intrepid Thread

I got a really fun package in the mail last week!  Julie, from The Intrepid Thread, sent me this lovely layer cake of the new Sphere fabrics from Zen Chic.

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Late last year, Julie put out a call for people interested in becoming sample makers for her shop.  I was so excited when she selected me as one of them!

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Don’t pre-cuts look so pretty from the side of the stack?

Now that she’s recently gotten the new Sphere line into her shop, Julie wanted a quilt to display in her brick and mortar store, showcasing the new fabrics.  She asked me to make a quilt using the Magic Stars pattern designed by Aneela Hoey (who blogs at comfortstitching if you want to check out some of her other work).

magic stars PDF quilt pattern

I love the different designs that appear throughout the pattern!  There are the stars that give the pattern its name.  But you can also see a cross design and just a general 4-patch too!

I’ve opened up the pretty layer cake and cut up all of my fabrics.  I decided to separate the more low volume/lighter prints from the darker prints and allow them to play off of each other a bit in the design.

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I’m working on getting everything sewn together but you’ll have to wait for the next sneak peek to see everything taking shape!

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Joining Christa’s Christmas Quilt Along!

So I can’t decide if I’m a glutton for punishment or if I’m simply crazy but I’ve decided to join Christa’s Christmas Quilt Along over at Christa Quilts and make a Modern Trees quilt.  For those of you keeping count at home, that brings me up to 3 quilts that I’m working on at the same time (all while learning what I’m doing as I go).  Yeah – I think I’m crazy!

But you see, after seeing how fun the Modern Trees quilt looked, I simply couldn’t resist!  Check it out:

Modern TreesI love all of the different colors!  And if I’m being totally honest, I love that Christa will be basically walking me through it step by step.

But then, being me, I had to go make life a little more complicated.  The finished quilt top for the quilt along is 30″ by 40″.  But I wanted it to be bigger so that I could actually snuggle up beneath it.  So I’ve decided to add a 10″ wide border on all sides to make my finished quilt 50″ by 60″.

I’d seen this quilt awhile back made by Penny at Quilt2sr5:

     

I loved the Christmas light border and knew I’d have to do that at some point.  This seems like the perfect way to make my Modern Trees quilt big enough to snuggle with!

The border design actually originally came from The Christmas Trees pattern in the “A Slice of Christmas” eBook by Piece O’ Cake designs.

Penny from Quilt2sr5 did the same thing I’m planning to do – put the Christmas lights border around a different Christmas themed center.

So doing a little copying and pasting to attempt to combine the images of the quilt along quilt with my desired border, I’ve made a (slightly imperfect) mock-up of the quilt design I’ll be making:

X-mas Quilt Mock-up

Christa posted the first step in the process this morning so hopefully I can get started with my Modern Trees Christmas quilt in the next day or so!

Have you ever done a quilt along?  If so, did you have any problems keeping up with the quilting schedule?

A Quilt for My Sister

Just to keep me on my toes, I’m working on a second quilt alongside the quilt for my cousin’s new baby.  This second quilt is for my sister for a birthday present.  I got her input on colors (she requested blues and purples) and then I chose a pattern and picked specific fabrics.

For this quilt, I’m following the Refracted Quilt tutorial by Melissa at Happy Quilting.  The PDF version of the pattern is also available in her shop.

I loved how it showed off so many different fabrics (the picnic size uses 25 fat quarters)!

I took advantage of some great Labor Day sales at Jo Ann Fabric at bought a bunch of their blue and purple fat quarters at about 50% off.  I also bought a couple of coordinating fabrics off the bolt so I’d have a few things that incorporated multiple colors (all of Jo Ann’s fat quarters – at least that I saw – were basically single colors).  Here’s what I ended up with:

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As you can see, I’d already separated them into five groups of 5.  You can see the individual fabric prints better here:

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I’m planning to go through each set of 5 one at a time instead of cutting everything up at once.  It seemed like it would be easier to me.  So I took my first set of 5 and cut each fabric into an 18″ square.  I then stacked the 5 squares on top of each other and cut out my 5 various segments.

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Then it simply started mixing the segments up into 5 individuals squares until I was happy with the color combinations and the look of the various pieces.  Here are a couple of my layouts from the first set of fabrics:

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I have just a single square sewn together at this point so I’ve got a ways to go with this project.  It is nice to be working with such bright, bold colors though after spending the last couple of weeks working with the softer, pale colors in the baby quilt.  What’s you favorite quilt you’ve made for a friend or family member?

Planning My First Quilt

I decided that I wanted to learn how to quilt so that I could make a baby quilt for my cousin’s new baby girl.  Baby Allie already joined the family in July (she is so cute!) but the quilt I’m making will be her Christmas gift from me this year.

I have a pretty large extended family, especially on my dad’s side.  My dad has three sisters, all of whom married.  Then there are 10 cousins and 4 of those cousins are married now.  And some of the married cousins have had kids of their own now (we’re up to 5 so far).  So when we get everyone together for the holidays, we sometimes have up to 27 people running around!

We decided long ago that for holiday gift exchanges, we’d draw names out of a hat because there are way too many of us to buy for everyone.  This way, everyone is only buying for one other person.  My mom has been in charge of actually doing the drawing and making all the pairings for a long time now but she will occasionally “cheat” on the drawing if someone has a really good idea for a specific person and wants to be paired with them.  So I asked my mom to make sure I was chosen to buy for baby Allie this year!

I was really drawn to the Derailed Quilt Pattern by FrivolousNecessity for baby Allie.  I loved the use of pinks and yellows together which made it look girly but it also had a bit more pizzazz than many baby quilts I see.  I don’t know if I’m adventurous or simply crazy to start off with a quilt with so many half-square triangles (HST) but I guess we’ll see how it goes!

Derailed

So off to Jo-Ann Fabrics I went to try to find 9 different pink and yellow fabrics that would work well together.  I’ll be honest, the fabric buying process really intimidated me.  There are so many fabrics to choose from and I just didn’t know if I had the eye for telling what fabrics would look good together in a finished quilt.  I’d read all about making sure you had a mix of small, medium, and large scale patterns and having different shades of colors to give visual interest but I wasn’t so sure I could actually put it to practice.

After spending a long time digging through the racks, pulling way more fabrics than I needed and narrowing them down to my top 9, I came up with the below prints.  My color scheme expanded a little bit to be a mixture of pinks, yellows, and grays.

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I found a white on white polka dot fabric for my background (unfortunately I had a hard time capturing the white on white with the camera but hopefully you can see what I’m talking about).

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Lastly, I had to choose fabric for the backing and binding.  For my first quilt, I felt it would be easier to decide all of this ahead of time and just buy all of my fabric at once.  But I also didn’t want to have to try to coordinate any more fabrics into the mix so I decided to choose two of the fabrics from the front.  I’m using a white/pink/yellow floral pattern for the backing (left) and a soft pink polka dot print for the binding (right).

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Now I should have everything I need to start cutting out my pieces and sewing!  Wish me luck!

When making baby quilts, do you prefer pinks/blues or gender neutral color schemes?