Moroccan Star: A Michael Miller Challenge Quilt

December 7, 2015

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!


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  • Reply
    December 7, 2015 at 7:28 am

    I love this! This is my absolute favorite MM challenge quilt I have seen. You really took the fabric in a direction I would have never in a million years thought of and made a wonderful quilt. This quilt will get into QuiltCon.

  • Reply
    Yvonne @Quilting Jetgirl
    December 7, 2015 at 10:10 am

    I just love the secondary patterns that the applique motif creates, and I think the way you chose to quilt it really enhances it!

  • Reply
    December 7, 2015 at 11:01 pm

    Such a neat quilt! I love the quilting, but the fussy cutting and applique are amazing!

  • Reply
    December 8, 2015 at 11:10 pm

    The detail photos gave me a much better appreciation for the work on this quilt. The hand applique is beautiful and the quilting compliments the applique design nicely. Good luck with the entry process.

  • Reply
    Laura West Kong
    December 25, 2015 at 11:56 am

    Loved seeing the close up looks at the details. So gorgeous! I noticed that about the orange peel fabric too — the different designs you get when you cut in different places. Hope to see it at QuiltCon!

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