Commission Quilting

Last fall I met with a new client.  She had been gifted a Charm Pack and wanted an art quilt made using them.  We met and discussed ideas and options, fabrics and pricing and time frame; and settled upon an agreement.  I would make her quilt for her, but would not start on it until after the New Year.

The New Year began and I started working on finalizing the design for the quilt, keeping in mind how the fabric would behave ( a very coarse, yet loosely woven fabric) and what the customer wanted for style.  E-mails went back and forth, approval of the design was made and the work began in earnest.

The center section was simple consisting of charm squares (5″ squares for those unfamiliar with the term) and a basic grid design.  The center had an appliqued square on top of the piecework and was soon completed.
Next up came the border of that coarse fabric.

That was where I had to put on my thinking cap.  Working outside the “normal” traditional fabrics means you have to get creative and think a bit differently.  Lightweight fusible interfacing to the rescue!   After applying a layer of interfacing to the back of the fabric, it was stable enough to be cut to length and pieced onto the quilt.

I didn’t cut out the shape of the borders when I pieced it, I applied them as traditional mitered borders (the miter would be my guidelines for the design).  After attaching the borders to the quilt, but before loading it for quilting, I used a template to trace what would become the outer edge of the quilt and then started the quilting process:

What you see quilted above would become the outside shape of the actual piece.  For depth, dimension, and stability I used two layers of batting in this piece.  One layer is Quilters Dream mid-loft cotton, the other layer is Quilters Dream Wool.  Although it looks puffy above with just the freehand stitch in the ditch done, after quilting the squares settled down quite a bit:

The interior of the quilt was left dimensional, to mimic the diagonal in the outer borders:

Finally the quilt was faced rather than bound and the hanging tabs inserted.  That allowed me to control the shape of the outside edge and did not put a line to stop the flow of the feathers as they come over the edge.  Binding would have created a visual line that would have contained the feathers within it.

The end result from the front:

And from the back:

A detail of the quilting:

The quilt was presented to my customer today, she was ecstatic about it and will be repainting her room to match this piece.

Finally, I leave you with my companion, whose attitude toward the entire process shows in the picture.

Round Robin project

Last fall,on Facebook, I issued an invitation to those on my friends list to participate in a Round Robin.  The startup rules were clear — send me a private message me of your interest and be added to the group that was formed.  Four people messaged me, which meant we had five total (myself included) and off we went.

Each member was responsible to make their own center block and pick their fabrics.  The block was to be either 18×18, 24×24, or 18×24 in size (divisible by 6″).  Each block was to be shipped to the next person by the 15th of the month and there were specific themes for each border.

I’ll show you the quilts I have worked on in this project, in order of progress; with the exception of the last quilt.  I have it in my possession and have started it, but the owner has seen nothing of it and I’ll share it on our FB group page first before I share it here.


In my center block I wanted to set a whimsical theme for my quilt.  I also chose to make it the rectangular shape of 18×24 as I intend to use this quilt to cuddle under at times and as of today I am still taller than I am round!  ;>)


The next month I received Gayle’s quilt to put the first border on.  Our theme for this border was triangles and in perusing my border books I found this one that I really liked and thought would compliment her center block.


The following month I received Jackie’s quilt.  Our theme for the second border was Applique and I knew I wanted feathers.  Not finding anything I felt was suitable for the quilt, I designed this feather border to use on her quilt.  I’m sure I’ll be using it again in the near future on another quilt as well!


Can you tell these pics were all taken on different months and are therefore different sizes?  One was even taken by one of the other participants when I forgot to take a pic!

For the third border, the theme was squares and I had a fun time with Cindy’s quilt.


That’s IT!   That’s all you get to see of this border for now, just the remnants of one fabric left over.  After it’s completed and Donna has seen it, I’ll try to remember to update this post with a picture of her final border.

I will tell you that I am using a paper-pieced flower block and two different alternating blocks to make that final border.

After this month the quilts return to their original owners to finish as they desire.  And the Round Robin will be over.  Although I hope to see completed quilts at some time in the future, there are no definite plans deadlines for that at this point in time.

So confused????

I am so confused today!  Am I a character in a children’s classic, running around asking the same question over and over?  Perhaps!  My calendar notes reminded me that we set the clocks ahead tonight.  Okay, I can do that.

But then my mind started spinning.  What does that mean?  Will it be lighter earlier in the morning, or lighter later in the evening?  For the life of me I can’t remember which it is.  I tried “reasoning” it out and just confused the person I was reasoning it out to as well.  So I googled it, and got more confused!

Sigh, either way I’ll know by tomorrow night.  I say night just in case I don’t bother to set the alarm and I get up later tomorrow morning.  I have a tendency to do that on the weekends!  ;>)

I’m spinning around on other fronts too.  It’s almost mid-March here, yet the other day we had January temperatures.  That meant winter clothes!  Not bright, cheerful spring clothes, but warm, functional winter clothes.  Hmmm, perhaps I should make myself a “winter” sweater in a bright, cheerful, “spring” color!  Naw, it’s not going to be this cold next spring, says the eternal optimist!  But then again, cheerful spring colors in January might not be so bad…….

And I’m still literally spinning, yarn from roving that is.  Today I take a class, hopefully improve my technique a bit.  I still haven’t figured out exactly WHERE that roving is supposed to go to before you spin it so it doesn’t get caught up in what you’ve spun.  Perhaps I need longer arms from my wrists to my elbows!!!!!  Or just to take the class?

Next time up, a post on the Round Robin I’m participating in.  It’s almost over now, just one more month/border to go and then all participants quilts will be returned to them.  So that makes my mind wander to “what next?”.  I’m thinking it’s just about time to drag out those sketches and start to work on the flower block of the month I’ve designed.  Applique, a different flower for each month, and I PROMISE the December flower will NOT be a Poinsettia!

Until then, have a great Saturday and I’ll be back soon………..