Tuesday, July 29, 2014
This was a commissioned quilt requested by a customer for a dear friend. The story is pretty cool: The two friends have never met, but were pen pals during World War II.
The lady who commissioned the quilt told me that she and her friend have been writing back and forth for many years, and she wanted to do something special for her. Her friend had been there for her through thick and thin, even though they had never met face to face. She told me that she is not sure she will ever really "meet" her friend, but that her friend means more to her than some of the people she has "met". The quilt is ready to deliver, and I can't wait to hear how it was received!
When I first started designing the quilt with my quilt software, I envisioned the blocks set side by side. But after I made several of them, I reconsidered and changed the setting to "on point" with setting squares in between, as you can see in the next photo.
I always appreciate the opportunity to use the new design wall that Bill and I made a few months ago. It is insulation board with cotton batting glued to it. The blocks just stick to it naturally and you can rearrange to your heart's content. Here is where I kept playing with the color placement until I was happy with it.
With the top completed, it was ready for the longarm quilting machine. I was going to do an edge to edge quilting design, but with the large white setting squares, I could not resist the urge to treat each block separately and use a set that I purchased in 2012 that is all different shapes of apples and leaves. This is Block One, in progress, which is a square design.
Block Two is a circular shape with just leaves, and I used it in the sixteen patch blocks. I had so much fun with these blocks, because the swirlies placed themselves on four of the small colored blocks. Happy happenstance!
The photo above shows how the quilt top, quilt back and quilt batting are loaded on the longarm machine. I took this picture after I had only been quilting for about an hour. I worked on this all day Sunday, while Bill was at work, and it took over eight hours to finish!
This motif is Triangle One, and is specially designed just for triangle patches in the quilt.
Because the borders can only be worked from side to side, doing a border like this necessitates taking the quilt off the frame, turning it, and reattaching it to do the last two borders.
Originally, I planned on using a printed backing for the quilt, but decided to use plain white. First of all, I had a lot of this fabric on hand that I had purchased at Hancock's of Paducah a few years ago. It is 100% cotton, of course, and it is a soft as butter! So I knew that it would make a soft and comfortable backing. Secondly, and maybe more importantly, I wanted a back that would show off the quilting. Mission accomplished! A printed backing would have looked pretty, but the quilting would not have shown up as much.
Here is the finished quilt, ready to be given to my customer's friend. I really enjoyed working on it, and hope that I have the chance to make something like this again soon.
I really need to use up some more of my scraps!