This next quilt was a long time in the making - at least the design percolated for quite a while.
The story of this quilt starts back in 2016 when I participated in the Lucky Spool "Mighty Lucky Quilting Club" where different quilters did a lesson each month. Jacquie Gering's lesson was on "Space: the Final Frontier" and prompted us to play with negative space using black and white paper. After reading through the lesson, I filed it away in the back of my mind...until a year or two later when I made the above sketch. I don't actually really like traditional samplers, but I do like traditional blocks. My thought was: what if I made simple sampler blocks with just 2 fabrics and no sashing: a more modern simplified sampler where the positive and negative spaces were random and new shapes jumped out at you.
In January 2020, I decided to finally jump in and begin making blocks. I had two larger cuts of blue solid fabric in my stash (Kona Nightfall & Mediterranean). They looked good together, so I began cutting and assembling blocks. I generally made two of each block and switched the color placement in the sets. You can see some of the 4-patch and 9-patch blocks above.
Can you see the traditional blocks when the quilt top is sewn together?
When I finished the quilt top in January, I felt like it needed a floral monochrome backing that incorporated both blue tones, but I couldn't find what I wanted online. So the top hung in my sewing room, until I ordered a fat 1/16th pack of Liberty lawns to make masks in August (ordered from Duckadilly). This blue floral fabric jumped out at my from the bundle. I loved the blues! Then it dawned on me: this was the backing fabric for my quilt!!
I quilted this on my own with my normal straight lines spaced roughly 1" apart, and I bound it with more of the Kona Nightfall fabric.
The blocks are 12" square and I used a 5x6 layout. That made for 30 blocks, and a quilt that finishes at 60" x 72".
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During COVID, given all the time we've been spending at home together, my quilts have become even more popular than ever (with my family). I made a new quilt for my youngest (read about it here), my middle child claimed my Scrappy Inner Star quilt, and my oldest child wanted me to make him something with minky backing. I had him look through some designs I had mocked up a while ago, and he was drawn to something similar to the design below. It is a derivation of the Criss-Cross block from "1000 Great Quilt Blocks" by Maggi McCormick Gordon.
To come up with our color palette, I matched the gray to his existing duvet cover, and the green to his existing rug. From there he established the he didn't want to introduce any new colors, so I went with a green several shades darker from the green that matched his rug. The colors that we ended up using are all Kona solids: White, Cactus, Grass Green, and Pewter.
Given that my child wanted his quilt backed with minky, I knew that I would have it long-arm quilted. (I've quilted one full-size minky-backed quilt and that was enough for me.) When it came time to choose the quilting pattern, I wanted something that didn't have strong vertical lines that wouldn't conflict with the strong diagonals in the quilt top. I also didn't want to use the same "modern waves" pattern that I've been defaulting to lately. So I landed on this "malachite" pattern from Urban Elementz. I love that it looks like a topo map and the "X" blocks remind me of a treasure map.
If I had had enough left over "Pewter" fabric, I would have used that for binding; or if the quilt wasn't for my son, I would have added fuchia or orange binding. But it was for him, and I didn't have anymore pewter fabric, so I went with this Timeless Treasures cross-hatch fabric. It works well enough for me and it was on hand: win-win.
I won't be writing a pattern for this quilt. My sewing minutes are so few and far between these days, and I don't want to spend the time working on Illustrator graphics, and cutting instructions. If someone really wants to know how I made this, let me know and I can walk you through it a little bit. For now, I'll say that this quilt has 12 blocks, and each block is made up of 16 - 5" pieces that make up a 20" block overall. I've got some highlights in my Instagram stories that will show how the 5" pieces are assembled.
The quilt finishes at 60" x 80".
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