I have a new design in Quiltmaker Magazine’s July/August 2015 issue. The folks at Quiltmaker named the design a Hero’s Homecoming. I thought this was a great name for the quilt as shown in the magazine as it’s a Red, White & Blue quilt. Before that I was calling it Stormy Sea because of how the final design resembles a Storm at Sea quilt design. The funny thing is that I wasn’t even thinking of Storm at Sea while designing this. It was only after I decided upon the final value shading that I noticed. Once again, Janice Roy of Bridgeport, Connecticut did the beautiful quilting. Click on the underlined text for links to the magazine issue and quilt kit featuring this design.
This design started the way most of mine do; it came to me as I doodled while waiting for an appointment. I can’t stress enough how important it is to carry a sketch book with you everywhere you go. You never know when inspiration will catch up to you. I started by filing in the squares on the graph paper to create an interesting pattern. For me, the pattern started out looking a bit like a stylized dogwood blossom. After sketching out a couple of repeats I looked for the base unit and marked with a couple of lines. Then I sketched it in the corner for reference.
After I drafted the design into my Electric Quilt (EQ) program I colored it using only grey and black values for contrast. I next tried rotating the block in different ways to see what the design would look like. I decided I liked the original sketch best. After returning to the original version I toyed with adding different values and the placement of the values. Once I had the values and their placement decided I swapped the grey tones for a color.
Next I added borders to the blocks that supported the scale of the design. Then I went looking through my EQ Stash files for a fun collection to audition in this design. The collection that caught my eye was one from McKenna Ryan called Acres to Go. In my EQ program I sorted the fabrics in the collection by value and replaced the grey values with the fabrics. I tweaked the fabrics and their placements until I had a look that was pleasing to me. I think this design would look great in any type of fabric. If you make one please send me the images and I’ll post it on my web site.
I have another new lap quilt design that I'd like to share with you. You can find it in McCall’s Quilting July/August 2015 issue. The design is named Nutmeg & Cinnamon. It’s made using “Spice Market” Tonga Treat precuts from Timeless Treasures. Click here for a look at the pattern and kit for this design. By the way, the beautiful quilting for this project was done by Janice Roy of Bridgeport, Connecticut.
The design was inspired by a doormat I saw that was made of links. You may have seen these in your travels.
I'm the guest blogger of the day on the McCall's Quilting Blog. They are posting an article about how I how I developed this idea into a quilt. It will also show you how I deal with color and value as part of the design process. Visit the blog and find out how to win a Spice Market Tonga Treat from Timeless Treasures just like the one used for the quilt.
I own Electric Quilt (EQ) design software which gives me access to new fabric collections through their “Stash” downloads. I had purchased one of their stashes around the time that this idea came to me. I fell in love with the Timeless Treasures batik collections, so I did mock ups of this design using four other collections. Click on the images to enlarge.
I have another quilt design to share with you. It's called Plinko and it's a crib or lap sized quilt. You can find it in the Summer 2015 issue of Fons & Porter's Easy Quilts. I named it Plinko because the diagonal elements in the design reminded me of the game plinko. You may be familiar with this game from seeing Plinko played on "The Price is Right" game show. My older sisters had a plinko game when I was little. I think all the disks were lost by the time I was old enough to play with it. Isn't that always the story? Anyway, the fabric collection is called French Navy by Studio 8 from Quilting Treasures fabrics. This collection includes pretty flowers and diagonal stripes in red, cream and blue. It was quilted by Pat Hluska. Click on the quilt for a link to the quilt kit. Click on the words that underlined for links to the fabric collection, the magazine or to see Plinko in action.
This design came to me very quickly and didn't require a lot of further development. I sketched the design I envisioned first and then looked for the blocks within the design. Usually I design the block and then see what a quilt would look like repeating that block. Another lesson learned. As usual this was the result of time spent waiting for an appointment somewhere. I'd have to say is was time well spent. I recommend carrying a sketchbook with you where ever you go. You never know when you might run into inspiration and you should be prepared. As Edna Mode, from "The Incredibles", once said "Luck favors the prepared."
I have a new baby quilt design to share with you. It will be published by McCall's Quilting. You will find it in McCall's Quick Quilts June/July 2015 issue. The design is called Sweet Shoppe because the motif looks a bit like wrapped candy. This design uses Lulu Fabrics from Quilting Treasures © Sparky & Marie by Joy Creates, LLC. This is a pretty collection of bright and cheery prints. The quilting was done by Pat Hluska.
For this design I didn't depend on my sketchbook. My goal was to take a common block and see what would happen if I changed the color placements in the block units. I have always liked the Shoo-Fly Block and decided to try using this block for my experiment. It's a simple nine-patch that holds a lot of potential. I used my Electric Quilt (EQ) quilt design software to help me explore the possibilities.
I started with the original block in a tiled setting. Then I switched the color placement for two of the blocks half-square triangle units that were opposite each other. Instead of the colored triangle touching the center square it is now in the corner of the block. I liked the way this looked but felt that it needed something more to give it more interest. So I introduced an alternate block coloring. It seems that this was just what the design needed. Next I switched the grey scale values for colors.
Here's a glamour shot of the quilt. Doesn't it look cute sitting next to the candy jars?
AccuQuilt is hosting a quilt block design contest. I’ve decided to enter a design for an applique block.
This is a design I came up with about a year ago. As usual, it was the result of some doodling. I've posted the sketch below for you to see. I wanted to be able create a block design that used only one motif in different sizes and rotations to create the imagery in the design. I love tile designs because of the secondary and tertiary motifs that seem to appear when you place them alongside each other. With this design I can accomplish that end.
I need your support. This is a viewer’s choice competition. That means that you are the judge. So please visit the AccuQuilt Quilt Block Design page and lend me your support if you like my block design. You can vote once a day until the contest ends on Monday April 20.
Here are some quilt design that use this block and block variations on the original design.
I have new quilt design in the May/June 2015issue of Quiltmaker magazine. Below, you will find on the left, the cover of the issue featuring a beautiful quilt designed by Bonnie Hunter. At right below is the finished quilt as seen in the issue featuring "Calypso" Batik fabrics from Timeless Treasures. Click on the image for the kit.
This quilt was designed while patiently waiting to set up a new mobile phone contract for me and my family at my local Best Buy Store. It was a long enough process to begin with. Then the computer gremlins of cyber space decided to get involved and the process got even longer. But it was O.K. because I had my sketch book with me. I always bring a sketch pad with me wherever I go.
My favorite sketch book is a 6” x 8.5” spiral bound graph pad. The grid comes in handy since most of the designs for quilting blocks are grid based. I also have a non-gridded sketch pad for general doodling purposes. Almost all of my designs come from time spent exploring ideas in my sketch pad. I should spend more time playing in my sketch book. It’s good for my mind and I recommend it to anyone looking to expand their creative juices.
Below are my initial sketches for the design that I drew while in the store while waiting for the gremlins of cyber space to lose interest in us. I started with the sketch on the left and then I sketched it out as a repeat to see what it would look like. I always start with a black and white version of the idea. When I get to my Electric Quilt (EQ) program I move into the realm of using grey scale values to enhance the design.
Now that I had a design that I liked, I further explored my options using my EQ program. Below you can see my journey through the design process. From one step to the next I would color in different pieces of the block design using different values of grey. Eventually I came to the arrangement of values that I felt best enhanced the design. Next I did a mock of the design using basic colors from the EQ palette.
Finally I looked through my EQ fabric library till I found a collection that I felt would look nice in this design. I found a great collection in my EQ Stash 2014 Download 02 folder. The collection is called Blueprint Basics. It’s designed by Valori Wells for Robert Kaufman fabrics. I was able to parse out two colorways for the design from this one collection. Below are the two looks and their individual blocks.
I have another couple of free patterns that I designed from Quilting Treasures. The collection is called Notting Hill. Notting Hill.NQuilting Treasures describes it as follows "Elegant, Jacobean designs richly translated in a traditional color palette – metallic accents". I would have to agree with the description. This is a really pretty group of fabrics. The projects include a queen sized quilt and a table runner. The fabrics come in two color ways as shown in the images below. As always I have looked for the fabric online and found it! Follow the link to Fabrics & Quilts.com to find what you need. They also have kits available for the runner. If you make either one of these I would love to see the final project when you're done.
I received a nice surprise in my mail box. I have a design in the spring 2015 Quilts from Quiltmaker’s 100 blocks. My quilt design, Stepping Stone, is on the cover of alongside two other beautiful quilts. Wow, this is exciting! The block used in my quilt was published in Volume 3 of Quiltmaker’s 100 Designer Blocks. You can read more about the block if you click on the image of the block below.
I have a quilt in Quiltmaker Magazine’s March/April 2015 issue. The design was inspired by a sketch I had made of a carpet I saw once at a flea market years ago. The sketch is not a very pretty sight. It’s fairly old and has seen better days, but I decided to show it to you because of the favorable response to the sketches I posted of my 100 Designer Blocks Vol. 10 posting.
I decided to finally do something with it. This design is the result. The fabric in this quilt is Forest Frolic and Sketch by Timeless Treasures. It was quilted by Janice Roy. She used an adorable forest critter themed pattern to complement the fabric. Isn’t it cute?
Check out the gallery of quilts below to see what the design would look like with other collections. Each one is labeled with the name of the fabrics used. Visit the underlined links for more information. Happy quilting!
I belong to the Connecticut Piecemakers Quilt Guild. Every two years in February we have a guild challenge. The theme for this year was circles. I remembered that I had tinkered with making a quilt that was a Fibonacci spiral.