Flower Applique – Playing with Sketches and Fabric

I started another project.  Shocking, I know.  After finishing my Bow quilt top last week, I started on some other applique projects including Sarah Fielke’s Secret Garden BOM (block of the month).  Most of them are complex and will take months to finish, and it’s left me without something to work on consistently.  I decided I need a simple, no-fuss, one block, small applique project to keep me busy.  But what?  After some sketching and brainstorming, this little flower applique block was born.

So far, I like it.  I have no idea how many I’ll make, or how the finished quilt will look, but it’s a fun little flower.  I used a 60 degree diamond as the background for the sake of doing something new.  

Hmmm, doing something new.  Are you doing that?  I have this constant tug, a yearning even, to just dive in and sew without a plan.  There are so many styles I want to explore, so many fabrics I’d like to combine.  I feel a pent up energy trying to break free.

But not yet.  There are too many deadlines still looming, too much going on for me to indulge in the fabric mess it would cause.  Soon, though.  At least I hope so.  I don’t want to ignore that creative spark much longer.

Until then, I’m scouring my scraps for pieces to use with this design.  I would like to cut and baste a bunch of them so I’ll have hand sewing ready to stitch.  This will be my next “stitch in the car” quilt.  Sometimes they take years, and sometimes only months.  I guess we’ll see how this one grows.  Right now, a scrappy, colorful field of flowers on diamonds sounds delightful.  I’m really sick of winter.  Just keep stitching, right?

I hope, with all that’s going on in the world, and with all the personal challenges that inevitably come, you’re hanging on.  




Faded Color Stack Quilt

How many Color Stack quilts have I made?  Maybe half a dozen, if you count the baby size versions I’ve given away.  Yet here I am today, with another one.  This was an experiment in toning down the color and contrast while still making all those strips interesting.  I’m calling it my Faded Color Stack quilt.

This version was made with softer colors, such as pinks and purples, peaches and some low volume prints.  I added in a little red, brown, and darker purple to ensure there would be good contrast throughout.  But color-wise, this is a softer quilt.

This Faded Color Stack quilt was a gift to my daughter’s best friend Abby and her husband and son, so the fabrics were selected with her in mind.  I love the way they came together.  Definitely faded or toned down, but still lots of movement and interest throughout.  It reminds me a little of this baby version, but with a bit more color.

I quilted it on my longarm in horizontal rows, alternating the quilting designs as I went along.  The thread is gold, and I love how it looks.  I got lucky in general on this one, because I like the quilting.  What a relief!  For the back I chose a lawn so it’s extra soft and lightweight.

My binding is a Victoria & Albert print I’d never have predicted for binding, but it felt like the right match.  It sort of blends all the colors together without emphasizing one too much, and yet it also frames the quilt nicely.

My Color Stack pattern has become a favorite make for me.  It’s simple to choose fabrics for, fast and fun to sew, but also a bit of a challenge to pair colors together and arrange them across the quilt.  I have started another in all blues, this for a friend also.  It’s fun to have an interesting, modern “go to” quilt pattern and I suppose the Color Stack is mine.

I’m happy to have the Faded Color Stack Quilt off on it’s adventure with the Serr family.  I hope they love it and use it to make lots of memories!  

Bow Quilt Top

I finished a quilt top!  It was an easy one to put together, and it felt like a great way to begin a new month.  Four simple rows, large top and bottom borders, and it is ready for quilting. Here is my Bow Quilt top!

After finishing all the blocks, I didn’t worry much about the layout.  I believe I’ve shared this before, but I don’t typically stress much about block layout when piecing together a quilt.  It seems like there will always be a reason to keep moving them around.  I guess I’m too impatient for that; I just want to sew them together!  But it’s more, because I feel like part of the beauty is letting them fall where they may.  If you’re going to say it’s a “random” layout, why fuss over it for an hour?

For example, I honestly didn’t think twice about the aqua fabrics being so close to one another until I took this photo.  I think if all the colors and fabrics in the quilt are beautiful together, then it shouldn’t matter much where they all end up.  So that’s what I did, and I like it.

Sewing my blocks together got me excited about this project once again.  I am planning several more complex applique projects, and was anxious to complete this one.  My bow blocks had ceased to be interesting to me, but together they look so cute!

My daughter Liberty took one look at these blocks and decided it’s her favorite quilt ever, which makes me happy.  I’ll give the quilt to her when it’s finished.  The pattern is the Bow Quilt by Carolyn Friedlander, and I highly recommend it.  Carolyn’s patterns are always well written and fun to make.  I altered mine, though, and split the background fabric in half, sewing one piece to the top and one to the bottom.  This places the rainbows across the center of the quilt instead of at the bottom.  Liberty agreed.  We both want the rainbows to be seen easily across the center.

I feel great about finishing my Bow Quilt top.  I nearly set this project aside to work on other things, but decided to finish it instead.  Now I’m happy to have my first quilt top of the year instead of another stack of blocks, and another item on my list.  Perhaps 2023 can be a year for finishing old projects?  With QuiltCon 2023 around the corner, it feels good to have this one done.  No need to let it languish past the year mark.

Hooray for a finished quilt top!

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