Hope: A Lone Star quilt

Earlier this year I was involved in a quilt swap with several amazing women.  Each of us was assigned a name, given a few color and style preferences, and we had several months to make them a quilt.  No pressure!  Actually, I felt so much pressure.  Over time, I noticed that most of my conversations with my assigned friend touched on the topic of hope.  In some way, it seemed to come up again and again.  This led me to my chosen design:  Hope, a lone star quilt.

Sometimes the darkness presses in from the outside, and sometimes it comes from within.  I wanted to communicate both.  But I also wanted to show that light always rises to meet it, chasing darkness away.

So I pursued an idea I’ve dabbled with a lot, flipping half a lone star the other direction.  I used my Mod Lone Star pattern and placed the color change on the diagonal instead of top and bottom, just because.  (I’ve actually done this before and prefer the diagonal line.)  In my quilt, the deep navy blue represents the darkest night, and the white is actually a white metallic fabric with a gorgeous shimmer to it.  I wanted to give the light “more” than the dark.  Metallic was the way to go.

The other colors – pinks and lilacs – are pulled from my friend’s list of preferred colors.  And the top/bottom borders are scraps from the back of My Heart, Today .  I knew that she’s a huge fan of the Outback Wife prints and these scraps were a perfect way to honor that.

Hope, a lone star quilt is my effort to share a little hope through a quilt.  To offer a reminder that we always have hope, especially if we look in the right places to find it.  And we can also offer hope to others when they are in their dark nights.  Just like my Morn Shall Tearless Be quilt , I hoped to give a reminder that eventually the light shines again and we smile for real.  Hopefully we find ways to do it every day, even as we struggle.

Our world struggles with hope, I think.  Uncertainty abounds and life often seems off-center.  We need hope for the big AND little things, for our trials and everyday.  I enjoy exploring these thoughts as I sew.  It reminds me to focus on the good, to look for the light.  I have hope for a bright future.

I hope you do, too!  Thanks for visiting!

Serve Quilt: Rainbow Edition

I miss working on my Resolute Quilt Pattern series, so today is a good day to share another version of the Serve Quilt .  The first Serve Quilt featured a simple color scheme in solids, which I love.  But this one makes me smile in a different way.  Here she is, the Serve Quilt, Rainbow Edition.

When I was working with my selection of Art Gallery solids on my Candy Shop Listen quilt , I enjoyed the saturated colors and didn’t want to put them away.  It occurred to me to infuse the Serve Quilt with the same colors.  I pulled a favorite Sally Kelly print out and ta-da!  It was the perfect combination.  And so I began.

The center star provides opportunity to showcase all eight colors, and they simply rotate around the star through it’s points, and through the smaller stars.  I chose a low volume Ruby Star print with tiny stars in different colors as my background fabric.

I love seeing quilt patterns made and re-made in different fabrics and colors.  This Serve quilt, rainbow edition shines in a different way compared to the original.  I love it just as much.  (It also makes me hungry to circle back to my smaller, Show Up version , to see what I can add to it.)

Melissa Kelley quilted this one, also.  She’s my favorite local longarm quilter and always does amazing work.  This edge to edge design is hers, and is a nice compliment to the quilt.  It adds movement but doesn’t compete with the design.

Rather than using the dark print for binding, or just one color, I decided to use all 8 colors in the binding.  Each color lines the quilt along the edge where it’s displayed in the stars.

For the backing I selected another Sally Kelly print from her Paradiso collection.  It’s a vivid, fantastical design that I’ve saved.  I’m so happy to have it on the back of this big quilt!

So there we are:  Serve quilt, rainbow edition.  A reminder to show up with purpose in our spheres of influence.  Serving brings happiness and color to our lives, especially when we’re in trying circumstances and low valleys.  I know of nothing that brings perspective and a lighter heart faster than service does.  I guess this version reminds me of the effects of wholehearted service:  so much beauty and happiness.

Wherever you are, and whatever you’re doing, I hope you find a way to contribute.  It’s good for the soul! Happy sewing!

Lucy Boston 1″ block – a start

For years I have admired English paper pieced (EPP) Lucy Boston quilts and quilt blocks.  I especially love the fussy cutting that usually accompanies them.  The symmetry, secondary patterns, and creativity in these blocks also appeal to me.  So, of course I bought papers!  And now I’ve finally made my first ever Lucy Boston 1″ block.  It’s a start on what I’m sure will be a very long term project.

I first learned about these Lucy Boston quilt blocks from the ladies at Alewives Fabrics .  Their weekly kits caught my attention, and this block is one of them.  I bought all the fabrics and never made it.  When July 4th rolled around and I felt sad I’d had no time to sew, I remembered this block.  This block became my tiny holiday stitching project.

Last year I started a larger size with 2″ elongated hexagons, or honeycombs.  I love it, but still wanted to make the smaller size.  This block only measures 8.5″ square, so I’ll need many more to make a quilt!  I purchased the paper pieces for both sizes at Paper Pieces .

Have you made a Lucy Boston quilt?  Do you English paper piece?  I didn’t think I’d enjoy it so much.  For me, it’s definitely been a stage in life thing – when my lap was always full of children I certainly didn’t have a needle nearby.  But now, it’s nice to have stitching I can carry everywhere I go.  I might enjoy applique a tiny bit more, but as my skills improve I enjoy EPP more.  Now, the real challenge is to find time to actually turn on my sewing machine!  This summer is busy!

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