Finished! Liddle Lamzy Divey

June 13, 2012 at 8:17 pm 2 comments

Ronan with fabric

Ronan Loves Fabric, too!

It’s the 2007 shop hop sampler quilt, finally finished!

1/4 of Liddle Lamzy Divey

“Liddle Lamzy Divey,” 2012, 86″ x 102″, only 1/4 visible because it’s hanging on my back porch.

I decided the name for this quilt had to reference the lambs in the focus print from the Jo Morton collection used for the shop hop blocks. After all, that was what made me buy the block kits — especially the little pugnacious lamb in the back:

Pugnacious lamb

Making this quilt created a multitude of fun challenges for me, and the overall design of the top just evolved organically as I solved each one. First, rather than making each block separately from its kit, I counted up how many of each shape and unit from each fabric needed to be made in order to make all 19 (18 shops + the kit included with the passport purchase) blocks. I then opened all the kits and only used what I needed. Since each kit included width-of-fabric strips, they were extremely generous, and I was left with a large quantity of excess fabric once all the blocks were made.

Flying geese bordersA desire to use up this excess fabric was the genesis of the idea for the flying geese borders, because I had stacks of 3 1/2″ strips crying out to have something made from them. I used the Fons & Porter Flying Geese Ruler for the first time, and was very pleased with the result. I also fell in love with the plaid, which was a part of Jo Morton’s collection but not used in any of the blocks. The owner of (the since closed) Quilting in the Valley in Hegins had used it in the center of her shop hop quilt, and I knew I had to have it. Setting triangles seemed like the way to go, and since most of the blocks had light backgrounds, I put the narrow dark borders around them so they wouldn’t bleed into the plaid. (Fabric selection for those was based entirely on what was still left from all those strips.)

Edge detail

Long before I knew what the quilt top would look like, I bought the acid green tone-on-tone print because I knew I would likely need additional yardage of one of the “neutrals” and it was my favorite from that category. Due to just how huge the top ended up, I wound up having to piece the long vertical borders, but it still worked. Once again, a cutting error ended up making the quilt more interesting:  I had initially planned for the outer borders to be solid 6″ strips with the extra flying geese pieced in to break it up. However, I got distracted and ended up cutting all my remaining yardage into 3 1/2″ strips. After storming around for a while, I got practical and decided to piece in the narrow strip of the focus fabric to make it look like an intentional design choice. As usual, the process of fixing my mistake led me to a more complex and compelling design.

Block detail 2I didn’t do anything earth-shattering with the quilting, just variations on what I’ve been doing with most of my quilting lately:  Pam Clarke and DeLoa Jones-inspired continuous curve variations and no-mark motifs following the piecing lines in the sampler blocks and flying geese; Patsy Thompson and Kimmy Brunner-style freehand feathers in the plaid setting triangles; and that Megan Best “Onions and Garlic” filler in the green vertical borders. I also quilted a little “half-hearted” design in the accent stripe in the outer borders and in the borders of the sampler blocks; it’s a variation on Sally Terry‘s “signature” sashing design that I thought complemented the feathers nicely.

Block quilting detail 1Overall, despite the sheer acreage this quilt represented, I tried to concentrate on making the quilting patterns echo and call back to one another so they looked like part of the same “family.” I also attempted once again to achieve Sue Patten’s “three densities,” with the densest area being the green vertical borders and the poofiest areas being the setting triangles. I did all the quilting with just two colors of Superior Threads’ So Fine!, orange and green, with tan Bottom Line in the bobbin. Other than a few isolated incidents of thread breakage after going through some very solid spots of converging seams, everything behaved beautifully. After this quilt, I think I can finally detect some visible improvement in my stitch length consistency, but that remains to be seen.

LabelI used the 19th block on the back as my label, and added a hanging sleeve made of the only fabric not from the shop hop collection in the quilt. (I didn’t have a big enough scrap left over to make a sleeve without doing a ridiculous amount of piecing, which didn’t seem worthwhile.) And it’s finished, a full week before I have to drop it off for the guild show. I washed it and am keeping it in a plastic storage tub until next week, so it doesn’t get cat hair on it, because this is what repeatedly happened while I was sewing on the binding:

Fergus & Oolong on the quilt

They’re very lucky they’re cute.

For a happy dance, here’s the song that’s been running through my head ever since I hit upon the name for this quilt:

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Entry filed under: Quilt Guild, Quilt Shows, UFOs. Tags: , , , , .

Almost There… Orphan Block Guild Challenge

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Siamese Cat on Sewing Machine

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