Wednesday, February 6, 2019

The Agony and the Ecstasy: Six Years In the Making, Jingle BOM Quilt Top FINALLY Completed

Jingle BOM Quilt Top Finally Finished!
I actually got the final outer border on this quilt top a few days ago, but I've been transitioning from my old Windows laptop to a big, beautiful, and largely inscrutable iMac computer this week and that's been slowing me down quite a bit over the past few days.  The highlight was when I logged into my email and deleted 62,000 "archived" emails from my google accounts, thinking they were just junk mail going back 8 years or so...  only to discover belatedly that I deleted the entire contents of my in-box as well as all the emails I'd saved in various folders.  Goodbye, vendor quotes and proposals...  Aaargh!  But I've managed to load my EQ8 and PhotoShop software on the new Mac and I'm learning my way around a little better each day.  This is my first blog post on the new computer.  I'll try to keep it brief in case I delete everything again by mistake!

This quilt began with Erin Russek's 2013 Jingle Block of the Month pattern, which you can find here.  

Erin Russek's 2013 Jingle BOM Pattern
I swapped out one of her blocks for a 54-40 or Fight block, set the center medallion straight rather than on point (after cutting it too small when I trimmed it), and added the inner and outer borders.  I also customized my quilt with a hand embroidered monogram in one block and hand embroidered dates that I worked on the quilt in another block.  Here's a close up shot of how those pieced "corner blocks" came out in the outer border.  

I had no idea what I was biting off when I started this project in April 2013, but I'd always  admired appliqué and the center medallion was so pretty, and Erin's BOM introduction said it would be a great project for beginners...  Erin's appliqué tutorials are excellent, by the way, but I also struggled with getting all of the pieced blocks to finish at the correct size without any triangle points floating or chopped off.  Then there was the Great Bloody Red Dye Disaster, the quandary of How the Heck Does the Block Border Get Sewn Together, the catastrophic overtrimming of that center medallion, and countless other setbacks along the way...  I've learned a lot with this project, and I'm going to have a blast custom quilting it!

Jingle Border Detail
Cutting those borders too short to miter turned out to be a very fortunate mistake, because I love how the emergency solution turned out.  My quilt guild meets tonight, and I'm planning to bring this top for Show and Tell even though it's just a flimsy.  Then it will get packed away neatly with its backing and binding fabric in the To Be Quilted closet. By the time I return from the marathon of longarm quilting workshops I'm taking at Spring Quilt Week in Paducah at the end of April, I'll have at least three and maybe more quilt tops waiting at home to be quilted with all those fresh new skills!

Next Up: Lars's Graduation Quilt
Meanwhile, I decided that the fabrics I'd purchased for Lars's graduation quilt aren't going to work.  I was trying to support my LQS and "make do" with fabric I could buy locally, but this quilt is a BIG DEAL to me and to my son, and I just couldn't bring myself to compromise the design.  So I recolored the whole quilt in EQ8 using actual Kona Solid fabric colors so I could be certain of getting that three-dimensional chain effect, and then ordered all of those fabrics online from  According to the tracking information, the mail truck should be delivering that fabric sometime TODAY, so I can start paper piecing those 48 arcs of flying geese!  This quilt has a May 26th deadline and I'm  hoping to get the top completely pieced before I leave for Paducah after Easter.  Stay tuned...

I actually did a pretty good job with my January OMG goals -- I finished the Jingle quilt top, I finished the workshop appliqué block (although I'm tempted to jazz it up with some hand embroidered embellishment), and I did a wretched job of machine binding that outreach quilt  (I learned how NOT to do it next time -- and at least now it's done!).  Too bad I missed the deadline for the end-of-January follow up post!  

So here are my OMGs for February:

My Pineapple Log Cabin, Patiently Awaiting Borders

  1. Get the borders on my Pineapple Log Cabin quilt so it can be a finished top
  2. Seam the backings together for both Jingle and the Pineapple quilt and set aside
  3. Make the binding for both Jingle and Pineapple and set aside
  4. Repair/salvage a quilt that was made by my friend's grandmother
  5. And, my One MAIN Goal for February will be to make the first 24 blocks for Lars's graduation quilt (the circular flying geese design pictured above).  

If anything gets loaded onto my longarm frame this month, it will either be that vintage quilt repair for my friend or else the baby clam shell quilt (unlikely, since I haven't started cutting that out or piecing it yet and I've been cooking up some machine embroidered embellishments for that one that will take some time).  My larger "First Quarter 2019 Goal" is to wrap up these UFO quilt tops -- and piece Lars's graduation quilt in its entirety -- so that I will have those tops waiting for me when I return from all of those longarm quilting workshops I'll be taking during Paducah Quilt Week at the end of April.

I'm linking up with:

February OMG at Elm Street Quilts

·      Midweek Makers at
·      WOW WIP on Wednesday at

·      Needle and Thread Thursday at  
·      Finish It Up Friday at
·      Whoop Whoop Fridays at
·      Finished Or Not Friday at

Last but certainly NOT least, I'm linking up with TGIFF -- Thank Goodness It's Finished Friday, hosted this week by Kathy's Kwilts and More!


Beth @ Cooking Up Quilts said...

CONGRATULATIONS on such a beautiful finish Rebecca! I love how you totally made the quilt your own by changing it up. You have a one-of-a-kind beauty! I too try to purchase my fabric from my LQS (especially since they're SO good to me) but sometimes they just don't have what I need. Lars quilt is going to be fantastic and it's perfectly understandable to not want to compromise on it. Good luck on meeting your deadline for it! I look forward to seeing how you are going to quilt both these quilts. I'm jealous of the classes you are going to take in Paducah!!

Lakegaldonna said...

Your Jingle flimsy is so beautiful! Your fabric choices outdid the designer too. Spot on Rebecca.

SJSM said...

Wow! Wow! And,, Wow! You need to show the designer what you did with her design. I’m sure she will not only be impressed but inspired by your take. This is a real show piece you should be thrilled to show your quilt guild and think of entering in a competition once quilted. What a stunning quilt!

Karen - Quilts...etc. said...

the quilt top turned out fantastic, love Jingle Bells your way and the fabric you used made it yours for sure. All your work paid off.
Good idea to order the fabric for your sons quilt and make sure it was the colors you wanted and the design looks so great!

chrisknits said...

It is FABULOUS!!! And worth all the lessons you learned?

Jayne said...

Busy Busy! I love the effect of the graduation quilt. It's going to be beautiful!

Janice Holton said...

Rebecca, everything you do turns to gold eventually. You,re creative and you dont give up! Cant wait to see your son's quilt come together.

Dogwood Lane Rambles said...

Your persistence has paid off with a fantastic, one of a kind quilt which is totally true to your vision. You should be justifiably proud.

Patty said...

Love your pineapple quilt and your finish is just fabulous! Thanks for linking up with Elm Street Quilts One Monthly Goal and good luck on your project.

Chris said...

Your jingle quilt is AMAZING!! All of your improvisations (shall we say! LOL) only served to make it even more special. It is absolutely incredible. And your plans for Lars' quilt? I'm in awe!!

MissPat said...

Your Jingle flimsy is gorgeous. I'm so glad you're going to be able to go to Paducah. I thought I remembered that you wrote you couldn't go because there were no hotel rooms, so I went back to your earlier post and saw your update note. That's terrific. I'm sure you'll have a wonderful time and will learn a lot even if it might seem overwhelming at times. Looking forward to seeing Lars quilt, although I thought it was going to be purple.

Debbie said...

I remember when "Jingle," was introduced and pondered for months about starting it and never did. Your quilt is amazing. Love, love, love it. Way to go!

Janice said...

What a beautiful quilt. You must be so pleased to have to top finished. You have some good goals for the coming month - they will certainly keep you busy. Have fun with the curved flying geese. I'm looking forward to seeing how they turn out.

Katie said...

Wow. Love your Jingle! I recently had a Bloody Red Dye disaster as well. I had to soak a whole quilt top which was completely hand pieced and appliqued by my mother. I'm just glad I caught the dye problem before the top was quilted. It was awful!