Let's Go Outside

I made this quilt as part of a swap between the Chicago Modern Quilt Guild (of which I am a proud member) and the Ann Arbor Modern Quilt Guild. We were assigned partners and asked to make a mini quilt we thought they would like. We could try to assess our partners aesthetic through all the modern stalking methods: Pinterest, Instagram, etc. 

Mini quilt for Giedra, measuring about 24" square.

Mini quilt for Giedra, measuring about 24" square.

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My partner Giedra of Thread n Honey seems to have pretty eclectic taste.  She likes color and lots of prints, especially Lizzy House.  I took these observations and felt free to get creative with her quilt!  I used some little drunkard path blocks that I had leftover from another project, and mixed them with some textured lilac solid I had.  I wanted to make some letters, as I often want to do these days, so I needed a phrase.  I chose "Let's Go Outside", inspired by a picture in Giedra's instagram feed that she captioned, "Summer still-life.  #outsideallday".  I can tell she values time with her kids and that they love to spend time outdoors.

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Hand-written label on the back.

Hand-written label on the back.

Quilting details.

Quilting details.

The letters I pieced for this quilt were pretty minimal.  The e's, for instance, were just squares.  I wanted to experiment with making the letters in their most basic form, and letting the quilting express the shape of the letter.  I didn't feel confident in executing this myself so I hired Nikki Maroon to execute my vision.  She also quilted some outdoorsy images like grass, sun, flowers, and wind.  I love the quilting on this little quilt so much.  Thank you, Nikki.  xoxo

Back of quilt.

Back of quilt.

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My first quilt swap

A fine gentleman on instragram recently  organized a mini quilt swap and I thought it would be fun to jump in.

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I was assigned a partner and commenced stalking her IG feed.  She seemed to like subtle colors and beautiful, small scale floral prints.  I had recently purchased a some pre-cut London of Liberty florals in a rainbow of colors, so I decided they would be my main fabrics.  I decided on a plus quilt.  There are so many great design options when laying out a plus quilt, and I spent a lot of time on Pinterest looking at inspiring quilts.  I ended up basing my layout on this gorgeous quilt by Megan of  City Stitches. 

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I used a variety of whites and greys for my background, since I had them on hand from another project.  I wanted to add something a little special, so I decided to make teeny tiny wonky stars for the center of each plus. I tried to use contrasting colors to make each star, but sometimes they ended up blending in with the plus more than I intended.  The stars were so small that sometimes the secondary colors in the prints came to the forefront, and the stars didn't stand out as much as I thought they would.  It bothered me at first, but then I decided to embrace it as another design element.  Some stars that pop out, and some that blend in.  I had this quilted by Nikki Maroon and she did a beautiful job.  The finished piece measures 24" square.

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It was fun to make this quilt and see my partner leaving comments about how much she loved it as I posted progress pics, since she didn't know it was intended for her.  I didn't have to worry about whether she would like it.  I already knew.  I also really enjoyed picking out extras to send with her quilt.  Paper Source is an excellent place to buy swap extras, it turns out.  I didn't take a picture of those, but I think I sent some washi tape, a notebook, a candle, and some candy.

I received a fabulous quilt from another IG user, which you can see here.  All in all, a successful swap.  I'll definitely do another when I have the time.

Halloween Quick Quilt

The final mini quilt in my seasonal series was for Halloween.  Since my boys love Halloween I tend to decorate quite a bit for it, so naturally I needed a quilt for the entry way. 

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I bought this bundle of fabric featuring the adorable Maude Asbury Halloween prints.  I wanted to show off the prints in what little space I had, so I put my two favorites in large swatches on the top and bottom of the quilt, and threw in a little strip of scrappy improv.  With the rest I made some little drunkards path blocks and mixed them up into circles until my eyes were pleased.  I quilted it with straight lines.  Measures 19"x27". 

Short and sweet construction, and a cute little Halloween quilt to display every October.

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Autumn mini quilt

I will be honest...  I'm in love with this little quilt. It's my autumn mini quilt for the entryway. 

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I knew I wanted to try Kathy's block from Gwen Marston's Liberated Quiltmaking II. I love the quilts she has made using this block, and I love the story behind it. One of her students was trying to make a wonky star block but put the points on the wrong corners of the square. Instead of shrugging her shoulders and telling her to start over, Gwen helped her student see how the block could be used in its own way and create a completely different look.   I just love that.  Liberated quiltmaking at its best.

Picking out colors for a fall quilt was tricky for me at first. I tried using what I thought of as traditional fall colors, carefully picking out all my favorites from my Kona card. But when all those reds, yellows, browns, and oranges were together I hated it. It was too on-the-nose and too turkey-looking. It was awful. I couldn't handle it.  

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I started over and tried a different approach with my colors. I took out some fabrics and added others, namely some greys and violets and teals. Angels sang. I was much happier and ready to proceed with my blocks.

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So, Kathy's block in a mix of fall colors.  Then I built it out with some solid squares in the same colors.  I added some light blue borders, and then used a scrappy binding.  The quilting was supposed to look like a leaf, not a teardrop.  I'm thinking of adding some handquilting to help clear that up.

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The quilt is up in the hallway, making me smile every time I come home.  I think it is my favorite so far.