Tag Archives: batik

rainbow-chevron-quilt

Half-Square Triangle Chevron Quilt

When you’re new to quilting everything looks daunting. You start out making lots of mistakes and doing a lot more work than you need to because you’re guessing how to do things that others have figured out long before you.

I’ve not done a tremendous amount of angled sewing. It’s pretty much been straight lines for me so far, so chevron quilts looked quite complicated, until I came across this tutorial from the Missouri Star Quilt Company.

A couple of years ago, right after I’d learned to sew, I went to a quilt shop with my mom and sister and bought a Tonga Treats 2.5” strip pack, which turned into this (cat not included)(unless you want her; she’s a bit of a beast). My sister bought the matching layer cake, but nearly two years later it had turned into nothing at all. I convinced her that she wasn’t going to do anything with it anyway, so she may as well just give it to me! And she did! And it’s just perfect for this chevron quilt, isn’t it?!

Finished half-square triangles.

Finished half-square triangles.

I didn’t have a white layer cake, so I cut out squares from some white-on-white fabric I had in my stash and got to work. Piecing this quilt took no time at all. I did it piecemeal but I estimate that I had a finished top in about 6-7 hours, including the (minimal) cutting time. You could probably save an hour if you’re working with two sets of layer cakes.

Finished chevron quilt top

Finished chevron quilt top. Special appearance: My piggy slippers.

For the quilting, I followed along the chevron with straight lines, though I admit I just sort of went at it without measuring (I used the sewing guide), so things got a little squishy towards the bottom of each chevron. I used white thread in the white spaces, and matching colours in the coloured sections. It probably took me longer to quilt this quilt than it did to piece it. It just seemed endless, particularly on my sewing machine, which has a tiny, TINY harp.

Quilted chevron quilt

Quilted chevron quilt.

Quilting detail.

Quilting detail.

For the back I used a colourful polka dot fabric. I normally add an extra touch to the back of a quilt to connect it to the top (usually a patched strip using the fabrics from the top) but I had a deadline, plus the backing fabric, though colourful, didn’t really match the colours of the batiks on the front nor was it white, which would have clashed with the leftovers I had.

It's not really finished unless Schnitzel has supervised the quilting.

It’s not really finished unless Schnitzel has planted herself on it while I’m working.

I made the binding out of the leftover strips I had from my sofa project and I’m really pleased with the way it turned out. I originally intended to fully machine bind, but it was taking too long and was looking pretty dodgy, so I hand finished it.

Binding detail. That's the same polka dot as the quilt back.

Binding detail. That’s the same polka dot as the quilt back.

The deadline I mentioned for this quilt was a visit to Toronto, where I left the quilt behind at my parents’ house. I didn’t cajole that layer cake out of my sister because I’m mean, I did it so I could make her a quilt to welcome her to her new/old home in Toronto, to which she’ll be returning after having lived in Israel for over a decade.

Loulouthi Tiles quilt

Checking in with my first Work-In-Progress Wednesday post.

When my friend asked me to make a quilt for her daughter’s 18th birthday I got really excited. I’ve been wanting to make a version of Tula Pink’s Fade to Pink quilt for a while and having seen this version of it, I figured I could do it almost completely from my stash. So one morning before I went to work I pulled together some fabric and sent her this photo:

Fade to pink 1

The response I got was: “Am thinking vivid, but restricting colours to blue, purple, red? Any views?”

I could get excited about red, but purple and blue? And red, purple, and blue together? I countered with this suggestion of light blues and greens:

Fade to pink 2

The response was: “Just make it purple and blue with a black background.”

Hmm. I was starting to have some doubts at this point. I went to the Abakhan sale hoping to find something because I don’t have much in the stash in those shades, and was looking for some sort of patterned black for the sashing and back (I really don’t like solids), which I couldn’t really find much of. I texted to tell her I was struggling with it and she said: “Oh, no. Just plain black. That way if she hates it she can just turn it over and will have a black blanket.”

I nearly cried. I couldn’t think of anything I wanted to do less than make this quilt.

I had a think about it and decided to abandon Fade to Pink. If I was going to make a Tula quilt, I wanted to at least enjoy it! I looked around and found the Loulouthi Tiles quilt at Stitched in Color, which could work with a limited palette and wouldn’t be difficult to put together (ha!). When I went to Toronto I managed to get loads of plain black cotton at Fabricland for $4 a meter (FOUR DOLLARS A METER! I’d be lucky to pay that for a fat quarter in the UK). Then I went to Sew Sisters and started taking apart their batik wall until I could come up with the right combination of blues and purples. I confess, there was some green in there, too. I was pushing the envelope on this a bit and was afraid that after all that, my friend wouldn’t like it anyway, at which point I’d be stuck with a quilt that the Germ wouldn’t even let me have in the house because its colours would be so. sad.

I managed to get the fabric cut and the top pieced in one day, and well, don’t I just LOVE IT!

Loulouthi assembly

All laid out. Don’t worry, the cats got to it every time I had my back turned and I had to completely reorganize it about three times.

Loulouthi main panels

Main panels detail. I am in flove with that purple.

The outcome certainly turned my frown upside down. These still aren’t the colours I’d naturally gravitate towards, but they work so well together and I hope the birthday girl loves it, too (her mom did–yay!).

Loulouthi top

Finished quilt top.

Since my deadline for this is early September, I’m hoping to finish this off this weekend. I had a possible epiphany about machine quilting the binding and I’m eager to try it and to report back.