F i n i s h e d !!!
You can probably guess when I don't post for a couple of days that I'm all hunkered down, working on something. And I was! Thanks to the wise craft's household Harry Potter obsession this summer, resulting in 3 movies in 3 days, I was able to get my current quilt project completely hand quilted and and bound.
I hand quilted a crosshatch, diagonal pattern all the way across the quilt. It took quite a while, but I'd had my heart set on it from the beginning of designing this, so I just kept telling myself that "I'll be looking at it every day on my bed, don't get lazy now..." I'm glad I stuck to my plan, the quilting is probably my favorite part.
My intention for the design was an oversized medallion motif, similar to a repeating motif I'd seen in a library book recently. As for color choices, I knew I wanted the design to have yellow in it, that would be my sunshine color. The contrast color had to be gray, for the Seattle skies and the constant overcast of a Northwest winter.
I wanted to use as much fabric from my stash as I could. I had a few fabrics that would work for each shade...some Amy Butler, some Anna Maria, some Denyse Schmidt...but I had to supplement (what a tragedy!). I bought 1/2 yards of some new fabrics, and I already had plenty of Kona cotton "Snow" for the white (I use that color a lot, its such a perfect middle shade between a white and a cream). All my fabrics came from either QuiltHome, Sew Mama Sew, and Pink Chalk Fabrics. I had a ball shopping online for them, and these folks all make a package of fabric look pretty special.
This is a simple pattern suitable for someone fairly new to quilt, all patchwork piecing. The real joy is in combining the fabrics and watching the pattern slowly develop over the entire top. I was able to piece it in about 3 days, spending a couple of hours each day sewing. When it came time to choose the backing, I had thought about using a king-sized sheet to save money. But to be honest, buying a 100% cotton king sized flannel sheet is no bargain (I spent one day checking everywhere). In the end, I changed my ideas a bit and decided to go with an all cotton quilt backing fabric in white (quilt backing fabrics are extra wide, meant specifically for quilt backs so that no piecing is required). I would have loved to use this fabric, but in the end I'm really glad I didn't spend the extra money. This is a bed quilt, the back is never seen (even the sheet folds over it at the top of the bed), so going simple is a great solution. I bound it in the yellow crosshatch fabric because I had just enough left over.
All of these photos were taken after I washed the quilt. I really love the rumply quality that the combination of the hand quilting and a trip through the washer create, even though the rumpliness will smooth out in a couple of days. The quilt feels incredibly soft and has wonderful drape. Too much quilting makes quilts feel too stiff and flat.
Now that I know this will not fall apart I will write a pdf!
Update- The pattern for this quilt is now available here.