23 August 2010

When I started quilting...

I swore I would never do this:

Obviously something has changed. My first 125 one-inch hexies are basted and ready for piecing.

17 August 2010

Porthole pillows

I'm excited about these pillows I made to go with my marquee quilt. I used many of the same fabrics I used in the quilt. The neutral solid is a double layer of the same unbleached kona muslin I used to back the quilt.

I wanted to contrast the square geometry of the marquee quilt with some bold circles. The reverse-applique technique is inspired by Lu Summers's porthole quilt. The finished seam of the foreground fabric against the backing applique creates a striking sense of depth. I obviously took my quilting in a different direction than Lu.

The pillow binding matches the binding on the marquee quilt.

This project started with a doodle on deceptively rare and precious note paper.

I like the way the straight-line quilting meets the echo quilting around the circles. I think it evokes a bit of science fiction, or maybe crop circles.

14 August 2010

It's curtains

Here are the curtains I made for Matt and Jason. They make quite a statement! There are eight panels of a twill print from Amy Butler's Nigella collection, each fully lined. I mentioned before that Matt bought 20 yards of the stuff 2 years ago.
Matt had finished 8 panels of the white lining with loops and hung them in his living room. Unfortunately I had to rip out all the seams because the existing finishing on the linings didn't work with my plan for the curtains. It was a bit intimidating chopping into all that fabric with very little to spare. And I learned that needles dull quickly sewing through layers and layers of twill.

12 August 2010

Flip the switch

The Marquee quilt is done. I posted about construction of this Modern Quilt Workshop pattern the other day. I feel like I've been working on this forever, setting it aside again and again to work on more pressing projects.

The sun decided to cooperate today.

I wish the ginkgo applique were a little larger. It looks a little lonely on this queen size quit.

Here the applique is backlit with beautiful sunshine.

And here are a few detail shots of the fabric and the pieced binding.

06 August 2010

Stack and whack

I took my first stab at stack and whack today. That's when you stack several layers of fabric, being careful to align the print in each layer, then cut identical shapes through all the layers. You can get surprising pinwheel effects by arranging the identical pieces into a block. Even non-floral prints can begin to look like flowers.

I used six layers of fabric and cut equilateral triangles (60 degree angles) about 4 inches per side, then arranged the pieces in hexagon blocks. Four pairs of hexagons in the above picture have almost identical prints, but the triangles are rotated to create different effects.

Not sure what I'm going to do with them. I think I'll sew the hexagons and wait for inspiration -- maybe something like this blanket by Kristin La Flamme. I like the strip of hexagons surrounded by solids, and the fabric is great. I'm less enthusiastic about stack-and-whack blocks cut from purely floral prints. The results can be beautiful, but the effect is usually just too floral for me. It's floral raised to the second power.

My fabric is from a curtain project for my friends Matt and Jason using a print from Amy Butler's Nigella collection. Matt bought 20 yards two years ago to sew curtains for their living room. Well, there hadn't been much progress so he asked me to help him out. Now the eight curtain panels are almost done and there are a lot of scraps -- hello hexagons! The triangles are carved out of long 4" selvage strips left when I cut the curtain panels from the center of the fabric.