Friday, March 21, 2014

Finished Quilt: Meridian

Meet Meridian..

The idea for this quilt came while I was knitting a scarf. The scarf had sections of stripes and each section carried one color and added in a new color. For example, in the scarf pattern,  the color changes looked like this: AB, BC, CD, DA. 

It was such a cool effect and I started thinking about ways to apply it to a quilt design. The blocks are made of simple rectangles and the color choices and color placement become the most important part of the design.  I chose all solids for the quilt top because they naturally have a crisp, graphic quality to them.

It took several days for me to decide on these colors and that was after doing mock-ups on the computer, pulling out every color card I own, and looking through many, many examples of radiant orchid online.

Kona colors from left: Regal, Dark Violet, Violet, Petunia, Orchid, Sky, Bluebell, Slate

This reminds me of a color gradient exercise in art class where I painted blue on the left side of a paper and yellow on the right. Then gradually added a little of each color to the opposite side until you find a true 50-50 mix of blue and yellow (green) in the middle of the paper. The same idea is shown here in an art instillation by Peter Wegner.

The backing is Sun Print by Alison Glass in Fuchsia. It was kind of perfect. I loved the colors and the scale of the print. It's fun to have a free flowing backing with a bunch of tossed, botanic motifs to an otherwise graphic and stark quilt.

I quilted it with a wavy stitch on my machine with grey Aurifil thread. It adds a softness to the otherwise hard, precise lines of the piecing. It amuses me that if you squint your eyes, it's like a radiant orchid mirage. 

Name: Meridian
Original Pattern
Measures: 42"x54"
Fabric: Kona in Regal, Dark Violet, Violet, Petunia, Orchid, Sky, Bluebell, Slate and Sun Print by Alison Glass in fuchsia
Thread: Aurifil #2606

Read more about this quilt here

I'm linking up with the Pantone Quilt Challenge, Radiant Orchid hosted by Anne of Play-Crafts and Adrianne of By The Windy Side.

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Monday, March 10, 2014

Modern Pincushion Swap

Sent: Apple Pincushion

At this month's South Bay Area Modern Quilt Guild meeting some of us swapped pincushions. We were assigned secret partners last month and we received a little note with a list of our partners likes. My partner likes aqua, orange and green. Sometimes its hard to keep it simple. I had complicated plans, but in the end I decided I liked simple best. Let the colors and fabric shine!

I used the Fresh-Picked pincushion pattern by Heather Bailey. The fabric is a mix of two older prints from my beloved stash, Bijoux by Heather Bailey and Type by Julia Rothman. The leaf is made out of wool felt in a lime green on top and aqua on the bottom. I hand-stitched the details on the leaf with Cosmo embroidery floss. I keep a stash of those little leaf pins for gifts. They are kind of chunky to actually use, but they are so cute to decorate pincushions with.

Received: Pincushion

Little did I know, I was in for a dual swap. My secret partner turned out to be my friend Julie, and she had me for her secret partner. So funny!! She made me the most incredible pincushion ever! Seriously. Look at this beautiful creation!! I don't even remember what I said I liked, but I love this. She absolutely nailed it. I added the pins for the photo so you can see how teeny-tiny the piecing is. It's a mini version of this table runner she made a couple of years ago. Isn't it gorgeous?

Received: Drawstring Bag

And that is not all! She made this beautiful little bag to wrap it in. The perfect combination of fabric and color and expertly sewn - all the seams are enclosed, inside and out.

Fresh-Picked Pincushion pattern by Heather Bailey
Bijoux by Heather Bailey for FreeSpirit Fabrics
Wool Felt from Retro Mama on Etsy

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Friday, March 7, 2014

On the cutting table: Pantone Quilt Challenge

I've been working on a new quilt for the Pantone Quilt Challenge. The last day to enter is March 21st, so I have a little time left to finish up. The challenge is to use Pantone's color of the year, Radiant Orchid, as the primary color for a quilt. The size, style and other colors can vary. There are prizes, but I think best part about this challenge is seeing everyone's interpretation of this color.

I started with an inspiring palette and sketched out a few design ideas. Once I had one I liked I purchased coordinating solids.

When my fabric arrived the real work started. Pressing, cutting and piecing together the top.

I came up with the design while I was knitting a scarf. It is all about playing with color, celebrating different shades and how they relate to each other. Each section of stripes leads into the next.

Next up... quilting. There are so many possibilities!

Pantone Quilt Challenge, Radiant Orchid

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