Moroccan Star: A Michael Miller Challenge Quilt

This summer, the Modern Quilt Guild (MQG) announced this year’s Michael Miller fabric challenge, and I couldn’t resist signing up.  Those metallic prints are so much fun!  I had an idea at that point, but once the fabrics arrived, I decided to change directions based on the exact prints that arrived.Moroccan Star finished quilt

Glittery metallics made me think of shining stars and opulence.  I typically prefer silver, but for this project I was really drawn to the gold printed fabrics.  To supplement the package of fabric sent by Michael Miller, I purchased some of the white and gold confetti dot also from the Glitz collection, and a Michael Miller black solid.MM Challenge

This design started with the fabric printed to imply interlocking circles.  I started experimenting by creating circles highlighting different sections of the print.  Once the circle sizes were determined, I drafted the motif that would create the final star design. I started the construction by hand appliquéing the circles to the white background pieces.  Those pieces were then added to the solid black background.  Moroccan Star process shot

 

Moroccan Star finished quilt top

For the quilting, I wanted to break up the background by using different quilting designs on either side of the appliquéd star motifs.  The quilting thread is a very dark grey which added a bit of extra dimension to the solid color surface.  I used the longarm for this quilt and the circle pattern was entirely free-motion using a dot to dot technique.  It is far from perfect, but it was the first time I had attempted this, so it could have been far worse!  I tend to like a hand drawn quality in free motion quilting, so I ultimately decided to leave it in and embrace the character of the piece.  Moroccan Star finished detail A

The lines around the stars and the tightly spaced vertical lines are also free-motion, but for the horizontal lines on the left side of the quilt I did lock the machine on the track before hand guiding the stitching.Moroccan Star finished detail B

This quilt was one of my entries in to QuiltCon, so now I (like many of you!) are waiting to hear which quilts we will see at the show in February.

Quilt Stats

Title:  Moroccan Stars

Size:  41″ x 40.5″

Techniques:  Needle turn appliqué

Quilting:  Free motion and linear quilting done on an A-1 Longarm

Fabric:  Michael Miller Glitz collection and Michael Miller solid

Batting:  Hobbs 80/20 in black

Thread:  Hand appliquéd with Gutermann Mara 100 in white, Quilted with 50wt Aurifil in a a dark grey

Binding:  Michael Miller solid black fabric (to match background) cut in 2″ wide bias strips, machine stitched to the front, hand stitched to the back

Goal #23 is finished!

Goal #23 is finished!

 

The Web We Weave: Mini Quilt #33

Happy Halloween!  I have been eager to try out metallic threads with the longarm, and this Halloween-appropriate mini quilt was a great opportunity to experiment.  Web We Weave front view

The piecing on this quilt top is very simple with only five pieces.  I cut a 12.5″ square out of solid black fabric and then slashed it in two places where I wanted to indicate abstract tree branches.  The fabric for the trees is a batik that is actually printed to look like trees, but I cut it on the cross-grain to create a Birch tree-esque effect on a slightly larger scale.  The resulting quilt top gave me a great space to play with the metallic thread.

Now for the fun part!  I was a bit nervous about trying metallic thread since I hadn’t yet ordered any specialty needles for the longarm.  The metallic thread I chose was a silver WonderFil with a rayon core.  I loaded a medium grey cotton quilting thread in the bobbin, and decided to give it a try.  It was awesome!  One of the nice features of the A-1 machine is a small pad that the top thread feeds through which holds a few drops of liquid thread conditioner.  It really does help decrease thread breakage.  I practiced some ruler work with the main lines of the web, defining the tree branches, and some background work with black cotton thread.  The curved areas of the web are free motion.Web We Weave back view

The backing and binding is made from the same black fabric used in in the quilt top.  The batting is Hobbs 80/20 in black which I pulled from a sample pack I received earlier this year.  It was so nice to not have to worry about white batting working its way through the fabric of the quilt.  My cat adds enough white fluff to my dark quilts without having the batting contribute!

Quilt Stats

Title:  Web We Weave

Size:  12″ x 12″

Techniques:  Machine Piecing

Quilting:  Ruler work and free motion quilting on an A-1 Elite longarm machine

Fabric:  American Made Brand black cotton and a batik print from my stash

Batting:  Hobbs 80/20 Batting in black

Thread:  Pieced with black Gutermann Mara 100, Quilted with silver metallic WonderFil thread with a rayon core (with medium grey Signature cotton thread in the bobbin), black cotton quilting thread

Binding:  Matching bias binding, cut in 2″ wide strips, machine stitched to the front, hand stitched on the back

What was new?

Metallic thread on a longarm

Quilt 33 / 50

Quilt 33 / 50

Goal #1 is finished!

Goal #1 is finished!

 

Simply Starred Mini Quilt

A few months ago I signed up for my first Instagram mini quilt swap, and it is currently wrapping up.  Now that my partner has received the mini I made, I thought I would share it here.Simply Starred front view

This quilt is also my entry into the Mini Quilt Category in the Blogger’s Quilt Festival at Amy’s Creative Side./Users/cassandra_ireland/Desktop/Quilting/My Quilts/Quilt Drafti

The pattern for this quilt is an original design that I drafted using AutoCad to create the foundation paper piecing templates.  It is pieced in eight wedge shaped segments and then the corners and borders are added.Simply Starred front detail three

There are 83 different fabrics used in this mini quilt, 80 of which form the star.  Each color is intended to flow into the next which results in a rainbow effect for the central image.Simply Starred front detail two

Simply Starred front detail one

The quilting in the central star is done using a walking foot on my domestic machine with threads which coordinate with the fabric.  Pebble quilting fills the negative space and was done on an A-1 longarm machine.  I love it when I have the opportunity to juxtapose organic elements with straight lines, and I was pleased with how the pebbling creates a delightful textural element.  The multicolored threads transfer a subtle version of the rainbow effect to the back of the quilt.Simply Starred back

Simply Starred back detail

Striped binding cut on the bias frames this piece, and I used the same fabric to frame the handwritten label for the quilt.

Simply Starred back

 

Simply Starred folded and labeled

Quilt Stats

Title:  Simply Starred

Size:  19.5″ x 19.5″

Techniques:  Foundation Paper Piecing

Quilting:  The center star is machine quilting using a walking foot on a Bernina 1008, and the negative space is free motion  quilted using a stitch regulated mode on the A-1 Elite Longarm

Fabric:  83 different quilting cottons

Batting:  Warm and White cotton batting

Thread:  Pieced using 100wt InvisaFil by WonderFil, quilted with assorted 50wt cotton quilting threads from WonderFil, Aurifil, Mettler, and Connecting Threads

Binding:  Striped fabric in 2″ wide strips made using continuous bias techniques, machine stitched to the quilt front, hand stitched to the back

What was new?

A new foundation paper pieced pattern

Combining domestic and longarm quilting on a single quilt

Goal #19 is Finished!

Goal #19 is Finished!

 

Summer Starburst: Mini Quilt #32

I had so much fun sharing a new block design last month for the New Blogger’s Block Hop, and I am so glad to finally have the binding on this project so I can share the mini quilt version of this block with you now.  If you would like to make a Summer Starburst block, it is available for free on Craftsy.

Summer Starburst front view

This block was done for practice prior to cutting into the final fabric.  The color palette is very close to what I used for the final block, but I thought it would be fun to incorporate a border to finish off the design.  Checkerboard designs have long been a favorite of mine, and this block really pops with this type of surround.

Summer Starburst detail

This was one of the first projects to go onto my longarm machine, so I decided to quilt each color in the block with a different filler pattern.  I left the black squares of the the checkerboard un-quilted so they have a slight “poof.”

Summer Starburst back view

I went with a patterned fabric for the quilt back, in part because I wasn’t certain of my free motion quilting abilities, but I think that I would have been happier with a solid background for this project.  I think the different colors of quilting thread compete too much with the backing.

Summer Starburst

I still have another practice Summer Starburst block around, so I’m deciding what to do with it- maybe a pillow is in my future!

Quilt Stats

Title:  Summer Starburst Mini

Size: 16.25″ x 16.25″

Techniques:  Foundation Paper Piecing, machine piecing

Quilting:  Free motion quilting on an A-1 longarm

Fabric:  Solid cottons by Kona and American Made

Batting:  Warm and White

Thread:  Pieced with Invisafil by WonderFil, Quilted with assorted 50wt cotton machine quilting threads by WonderFil, Connecting Threads, and Signature

Binding:  Solid black cotton, cut 2″ wide, machine stitched to the front, hand stitched on the back.

What was new?

Using all Free Motion quilting on a longarm

Quilt 32 / 50

Quilt 32 / 50

Goal #9 is finished!

Goal #9 is finished!

 

Fading Florals: Mini Quilt #28

This week I am taking a slightly different approach to a whole cloth quilt.Fading Floral

When I came across this fabric, it seemed to call out for some sort of fun fabric modification.Floral fabric

I have done some different fabric painting and dying techniques over the years, but I hadn’t had the right project to try this one on before.  In this process color is added to fabric using Sharpie markers.  Using a paintbrush dipped in rubbing alcohol, you paint over the colored areas to create a watercolor effect.Fading Floral detail

The quilting is a free motion design that follows the printed design on the fabric.  The design blends into the front, but stands out nicely against the solid white backing fabric.Fading Floral back view

Quilt Stats

Title:  Fading Florals

Size: 14-1/2″ x  14-1/2″

Techniques:  Wholecloth quilt, Rubbing Alcohol/Sharpie fabric modification

Quilting:  Freemotion quilting following the printed pattern of the fabric

Fabric:  “Bellisimo” designed for Benartex by Michele D’Amore Designs, white Kona Cotton backing, black American Brand Solid binding

Batting:  Warm and White Cotton Batting

Thread:  Quilted with Black cotton machine quilting thread

Binding:  Black cotton, cut in 2″ wide strips on the bias, machine stitched to the front, hand stitched to the back

What was new?

Sharpie/Rubbing Alcohol fabric modification

Using a pre-printed fabric to determine the free motion quilting design

Quilt 28 / 50

Quilt 28 / 50

Goal #5 is finished!

Goal #5 is finished!