Finished! Spumoni Spring

May 17, 2012 at 10:00 am 1 comment



Five quilts down, one to go:

"Spumoni Spring" 2012, 72" x 72"

“Spumoni Spring” 2012, 72″ x 72″

I have submitted my entry forms for the guild quilt show, now only a month away, and I am entering six quilts:  Welcome Ronan, AKA Ronan’s Quilt; The Very Hungry Caterpillar; Dragons Galore, AKA Minkee Dragons; Halloween Buzz Saw; Spumoni Spring, AKA Pink and Brown; and the shop hop sampler quilt. That final one is still on the sewing table, still being quilted. BUT! It’s mostly complete, I know what I’m doing with the rest of it, and I already have the binding made. AND! The other five are completely finished, including hanging sleeves. I think that’s a personal best; I’m usually sewing on hanging sleeves into the wee hours of Wednesday morning before the show, when we have to bring our quilts to the fairgrounds.

So, back to Spumoni Spring. The title presented itself once I added that green:

Block detail, "Spumoni Spring"

Block detail, “Spumoni Spring”

The blocks are quilted in a Pam Clarke-inspired design, for which I used her Basic 8 stencil and a blue chalk pounce to just give me some temporary guidelines to work with. This was a really satisfying technique:  no blue marker to wash out, but definitely more consistent results than I can achieve by just eyeballing it. The blue chalk was highly visible on all my fabrics, but it brushes off very quickly, so I couldn’t mark more than one block at a time. I was also trying to use as few thread starts and stops as possible. Therefore, as I prepared to enter each block, I had to use my big 16 1/2″ square plexiglass ruler as a table to slide under the quilt and give me a surface on which to mark my blue chalk asterisk. Not the most graceful technique in the world, but I’m not arguing with the finished product.

Border quilting detail, Spumoni Spring

Border quilting detail, Spumoni Spring

The two center vertical strippy borders were such a busy print that I knew nothing would show up, so I just echoed the print to create the appropriate quilting density. The two outer vertical strippy borders were not quite as busy, but with that large floral, I still didn’t want to exert myself particularly; if I’m going to do something fancy, I want to be able to see it! Therefore, I selected a design I’d been meaning to try:  Onions and Garlic from Megan Best’s “Spinal Twist” book. It’s simple but creates a beautiful texture, which (like many of my favorite freehand designs) benefits from being somewhat imprecise. This is one I will definitely use again.

The outermost pinwheel border was the area I selected to get the least dense quilting design. I’ve mentioned before how I like Sue Patten‘s principle that a quilt should have three densities of quilting to create depth and contrast, the same way the top should have three values of fabric. Since this is definitely a lap/cuddle quilt, rather than a wall quilt, I thought having a nice soft poofy border where your face would go might work out well. We’ll see, because currently I feel like it needs something more. Oh well, it’s a learning experience! I just did a looping continuous curve variation, following the seam lines as if they were hourglass blocks:

Feather quilting detail, Spumoni Spring

Feather quilting detail, Spumoni Spring

In contrast, the densest quilting was in the green border, where I did one of Patsy Thompson‘s feather wave borders. I broke down and mail-ordered the 40″ flexible curve ruler, which made marking the spine VERY easy. I used a variegated pink thread from Fil-Tec that behaved beautifully; I will definitely be exploring more of their threads.

Label detail, Spumoni Spring

Label detail, Spumoni Spring

The binding seemed to need to be green as well, and I used a spare pinwheel block as the label. And after five years in the UFO box, it’s finished! It feels so good to be racking up a list of these. Of course, the next “Finished!” post will be about a new (though small) project that I’m taking to Show & Tell at guild tonight, and I’m already mentally making my challenge quilt for next fall, so the UFO completion rate will probably slip a bit in the near future. But at the same time, the confidence I’ve built over the last several projects is really encouraging me to take a deep breath and quilt Ruby Wedding. Now THAT would alleviate some quilt guilt and free up some brainspace!

This quilt’s happy dance really couldn’t be to any other song, and Gerard Darmon’s version of it for this video made me smile:


Entry filed under: UFOs. Tags: , , , , .

Hooray for Quilt Guild Retreat! Alexander’s Quilt

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Cats and Quilts, Again « Sarah Loves Fabric  |  May 25, 2012 at 7:31 pm

    […] my parents were here, and I wanted to show my mom Spumoni Spring now that it’s all quilted and bound. I’ve been keeping it in the basement since I […]


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