Indiana Heritage Quilt Show Mini Quilts

The first weekend in March the Indiana Heritage Quilt Show took place in Bloomington, Indiana.  I had never been to this show, so I thought it would be fun to check it out.  There were many impressive quilts in this show, and I thought I would share a few of my favorites with you.

Today I’m showing you a few of my favorites in the small quilt category.  Most of these quilts I would consider to be miniature quilts.  In my mind, a miniature quilt is a small quilt with all of the detail of a large quilt scaled down, resulting in a quilt with thousands of minuscule pieces painstakingly assembled into a spectacular finished piece.  I tend to think of a mini quilt (my current obsession!) as a small quilt that does not necessarily have scaled down components.  Do you make a distinction between mini and miniature quilts?  I may have somehow created a distinction in my own mind that does not necessarily exist!

The quilt which won the first place award for small quilts also won an award for hand quilting, and definitely fits into my idea of what makes a miniature quilt.

Lahala Phelps Dutch Flower Pots

Lahala Phelps Dutch Flower Pots

Lahana Phelps has truly beautiful hand stitching in both the appliqué and quilting of this piece.

Lahala Phelps Dutch Flower Pots detail

Lahala Phelps Dutch Flower Pots detail

Another lovely piece of miniature appliqué is in this quilt by Laura Welklin.

Laura Welklin Dancing Dahlias

Laura Welklin Dancing Dahlias

The fine detail in her appliqué and quilting is amazing and the whole quilt is set off with a tiny flanged binding.

Laura Welklin Dancing Dahlias detail

Laura Welklin Dancing Dahlias detail

The tiny feather quilting and the minuscule piecing really caught my eye on this quilt by Mary Mouton.

Mary Mouton Itsy Bitsy Stripsy

Mary Mouton Itsy Bitsy Stripsy

Can you believe that each of triangles on the basket handles were pieced?  Each half square triangle is only about 1/8″ square!

Mary Mouton Itsy Bitsy Stripsy detail

Mary Mouton Itsy Bitsy Stripsy detail

Suzy Webster made this modern mini quilt.  I liked her use of negative space on this piece.

Suzy Webster Pulse

Suzy Webster Pulse

The detail in her quilting really sets this quilt apart.

Suzy Webster Pulse detail

Suzy Webster Pulse detail

One of my favorite quilts of the day was this piece by Sharon L Schlotzhauer.  I was immediately drawn to the composition, the pieced in splashes of color in the tiny binding, and the awesome matchstick quilting.

Sharon L Schlotzhauer Almost Squared Away II

Sharon L Schlotzhauer Almost Squared Away II

I loved how the variation in the density of the matchstick quilting really created depth and drew the viewers eye around the quilt.

Sharon L Schlotzhauer Almost Squared Away II detail

Sharon L Schlotzhauer Almost Squared Away II detail

I really enjoyed seeing the quilts at this show, and I’m looking forward to sharing some of the larger quilts next week!

Modern Log Cabin Quilt

When I first decided that I wanted to return to quilting, I wanted to create a piece which had been floating around in the back of my mind for awhile.  Modern Log Cabin Quilt

Several years ago I had been to an exhibit at The Wadsworth Atheneum in Hartford, Connecticut which included a “potholder” quilt from around the Civil War.  A potholder quilt is created by quilting and binding individual blocks before whip stitching them together to form a quilt.  This technique was popular during the US Civil War for group quilts made to send to soldiers.  Each person working on the project could piece, quilt, and bind individual blocks.  When the group would meet, they could whip stitch the blocks together and quickly produce a finished quilt.

This quilting technique would work well in a modern context because:

  • The individually bound blocks naturally create a quilt which has a design on both the front and back of the quilt- Its like getting two quilts for the work of one!
  • Since much of the design comes from the binding of the blocks, you can really show off some of those gorgeous fabrics that are available to us now.
  • It is completely plausible to quilt even the largest quilts on a domestic sewing machine using this technique since you are only quilting a small portion at a time.
Modern Log Cabin Front View

Front View of “Modern Log Cabin”

I wanted my first project using this method to be fairly straightforward, but I didn’t want to go with a super traditional layout of square blocks either.  I landed on the idea of creating a modern Log Cabin block on a large scale.  Each “log” is its own bound block.

First, I drafted the layout for the quilt.  I planned accent strips (the orange stripes in the finished quilt) to add visual interest and create a natural place to seam fabric together for “logs” longer than the width of the fabric.  (I always try to design in necessary seams when I can!)/Users/cassandra_ireland/Desktop/Portfolio/Misc. Projects/Quilt

Originally, I planned to unite the front and back of the quilt by making the accent pieces the same color as the reverse side of the quilt.  While selecting fabrics, I decided that both sides of the quilt wanted a jolt of color.  I went with an orange from Carolyn Friedlander’s collection since it worked well with both the grey and the blue sides of the quilt./Users/cassandra_ireland/Desktop/Portfolio/Misc. Projects/Quilt

For the quilting design I used straight line quilting paired with radiating arcs.Modern Log Cabin Quilting Detail

The binding is cut on the straight grain and each side is bound individually (rather than with mitered corners) as a nod to how quilts were sometimes bound in potholder quilts.  Side note- I still prefer doing bias with mitered corners.  I seriously considered how to join the blocks.  The traditional method would be hand whip stitching (I did this on the quilt Low Volume Fail, Pastel Win), but I wanted to experiment with using a sewing machine, so I selected a triple zig zag stitch.  Modern Log Cabin Detail

This quilt came together pretty easily, and I am really happy with the result.  I finished this quilt back in September, but I hadn’t gotten around to sharing it yet.  Today seemed to be a good day to share because I recently found out that this quilt will be exhibited in the Modern Quilt Category at the American Quilter’s Society Show in Paducah, Kentucky this April!  I have been to this show a few times (and as a high school student had a couple of garments in the fashion show there), but this is the first time I have had a quilt in a major show.  This was an awesome surprise since I almost didn’t enter this quilt!  (I had also entered Low Volume Fail, Pastel Win, which was not accepted even though I thought that it would have a much better chance.  It is so hard to tell what each show is looking for in a given year.  For now, I guess I will keep entering shows with a couple different style quilts and just see what happens- It can’t hurt, right?)

Back View of "Modern Log Cabin"

Back View of “Modern Log Cabin”

Quilt Stats

Title:  Modern Log Cabin

Size:  53″x63″

Techniques:  Bound Blocks (Potholder Technique), Machine Pieced and Quilted

Quilting:  Straight Line and Radiating Arcs

Fabric:  Assorted Cotton Prints

Batting:  Warm and Natural Cotton Batting

Thread:  White Cotton Machine Quilting Thread

Binding:  Cotton print, cut on grain in 2″ wide strips, machine stitched to the front, hand stitched to the back

What was new:

  • Bound block technique
  • On grain binding
  • Binding each side individually (no miters)

I’ll be linking this quilt post up with Sew Cute Tuesday at Blossom Heart Quilts, Let’s Bee Social at Sew Fresh Quilts, Needle and Thread Thursday at My Quilt Infatuation, and Whoop Whoop Friday at Confessions of a Fabric Addict.  Please take a few moments to stop in and see all of the lovely projects being shared!