I work at a local quilt shop and I make a lot of samples for them, plus I do some custom sewing from time to time. I enjoy all of that, but it keeps me busy and I don't often get to just play with the fabric that I love. So starting last summer I decided I was finally going to cut back on some of those projects and do more sewing for friends and family. Two of my sisters were pregnant and I wanted to make quilts for both of them, which were both a lot of fun (see here and here, if you like). I also really wanted to make a quilt for my mother-in-law. It was so liberating to be as creative as I wanted to be and to use up my stash.
I had a pile of fabric under my cutting table for almost 2 years waiting to be made into a quilt for my third sister and before Christmas I finally decided I was going to FINISH one for her too. I really loved the improv nature of this quilt and had a great time putting it together and using up a LOT of that fabric. (Feels so good, you know? And makes you feel less guilty about buying more fabric. Haha.)
The other part of this quilt that stretched me was the quilting. I don't often do my own quilting, partly because I just don't feel very competent in those skills and partly because I'm just lazy and partly because I'm terrified that I'll ruin the quilt. But this time I decided to gird up my loins and give it a go. I used a long-arm machine at the shop where I work. The process took longer than I thought it would and by the end the machine and I were practically in a rumble and I was feeling so frustrated and swearing never to attempt that again.
But when I took it home and looked at it again - especially the design in the brown solid on the back, I was pleasantly surprised at how much I liked it. Looking at it again now, I think it's pretty awesome.
I have had people ask me about a pattern for this quilt. Frankly most of it is improv so I don't even know if I could re-create a pattern with directions shorter than War and Peace, but because I like you all so much, I'll give you some basic block measurements and give you free licence to copy my quilt if you want.
The large blocks are finished at 15" and the small blocks are finished at 7.5". Some of the small blocks are solid and so I cut 8" squares for those. I made a total of 12 of the 15" blocks and 15 of the 7.5" blocks (that includes the blocks that are a solid square). All the pieced blocks I just kept adding scraps of fabric until the blocks grew and I squared them up to 15.5" or 8" (that includes the seam allowance). Use the first picture to see the block placement. The blocks are basically sewen into 5 rows before the rows are all sewn together.
Enjoy the rest of the Blogger's Quilt Festival. I always love all the inspiration I glean here. Thanks again Amy for putting it all together.