Friday, June 19, 2020

Good Times "Under the Stars" Quilt Kit Ordered, as Spirit Song Quilting Progresses to the Borders

I know, I know -- I was trying so hard to be good and not shop for new projects until finishing my Spirit Song quilt, but Green Fairy put the Under the Stars kit (using fabrics from the Good Times collection from American Jane) on their clearance sale for half price.  I have always admired star quilts similar to this one and I am so looking forward to making this quilt!

Under the Stars is designed to finish at 88" x 95" and the pattern description says it's "easier than it looks" due to strip piecing construction.  I was not able to find a photograph of an actual sample quilt for this kit, just the graphic rendering image above, so I don't know whether there are Y-seams or anything else about it.  I've never made a quilt from a kit before, either, so that makes me a little nervous.  I'm not sure how stingy they are with fabric in a kit, you know?  When I purchase fabric for a quilt, I always pad the yardage to allow for my inevitable cutting mistakes, and sometimes I still have to run back to the fabric store (or scour the Internet) for more fabric when I run out.  I wonder whether I should purchase additional fabric from this collection just in case, but who knows which one(s) I'd need more of?

By the way, I blame Karen of Quilts... etc. for this NewFO.  If she had not told everyone about the sale at Green Fairy Quilts, and I hadn't clicked her link out of curiosity to see the kit she was interested in, then I would never have even seen this quilt.  Once I fell in love with it, and found out that Karen had ordered hers, that was the end of my will power to resist.  Of course, Karen is WAY more productive than I am, and she will probably whip up her version of this quilt in the time it takes me to cut the fabric -- but maybe seeing her progress online will help me stay motivated!  :-)

So, as I'm looking at that image of the Under the Stars quilt, the only thing I'm not 100% in love with is the borders.  That could be an opportunity to "tweak" the kit and make it my own.  I'll have to think about that more when my kit comes in the mail and I can see the fabrics in person.  An appliqué border would look great with the stars, or maybe just a larger scale border print fabric if I could find one that coordinates with the fabrics.  Changing up the border would also give me the opportunity to make this quilt larger if I wanted to. But meanwhile, back to the quilt on the frame!

I actually AM making progress on my Spirit Song quilt.  I finished all of the ruler work and FMQ using peach thread last night, and rolled the quilt back up to the beginning to begin the next thread color.  At first I thought I'd do the background fills next in all of the white/off white/neutral fabric patches, so I rethreaded my machine with white thread last night.  But this morning I'm reconsidering.  It might be a better idea to quilt the wide outer borders first before adding more quilting to the center of the quilt.

And what will I quilt in this border?  I'm leaning towards a blending purple thread and a design similar to this one that I found on Pinterest by Rose City Quilter:

I just have to figure out how to mark the main triangle outlines, but then I should be able to quilt the straight lines without marking (hopefully!), either using the straight lines on my regular rectangular ruler, or I could try using my ProLine 2 ruler from Quilter's Groove to quilt those lines without marking them first.  I'm definitely experiencing some Quilt Marking Fatigue at this point!

I'm not an affiliate for Quilter's Groove rulers or anything like that.  I just really like them, after taking Lisa Calle's Rulers for Rookies workshop where she taught us how to use them.  Like all of Lisa's Quilter's Groove rulers, the ProLine series has lots of helpful reference lines etched into each ruler so you always have a way to line it up with a seam line or previously stitched line of quilting to maintain accuracy -- without extensive marking of your quilt ahead of time.  The way the ProLine rulers work is hard to explain, but pretty easy to use if you watch the videos and follow Lisa's instructions.  The width of the groove in the middle of this ruler is how you "measure" the spacing of the straight lines, so the ProLine 2 shown above is designed for 1/2" spaced lines.  She also has versions of this ruler available for spacing straight lines 1" apart, 1/4" apart, 1/8" apart, and 1/16" apart (for stitching straight line fills).  The ProLine 2 was included in my class kit when I took the Rulers for Rookies workshop at Paducah last Spring, and I just now ordered the other sizes.  I didn't think it was a big deal to mark all of my lines first when I was just quilting practice blocks on muslin, but now that I've been slaving away with all of the ruler work on my Spirit Song quilt, I'm singing a different tune!  The ProLine 8 might have helped me keep my squiggle width more even in my ruler work design:

I might use the ProLine 8 or the ProLine 16 for some straight line fills in the neutral background fabrics, too.  Can't experiment with rulers that you don't have, you know what I mean?

I do know what I want to quilt in the narrow blue border.  Half inch CIRCLES!  Also known as "string of pearls."  I'm planning to mark them with my Building Blocks Full Line Stencil and Pounce Chalk.  I am hoping that I can quilt rounder circles if I have them marked first.  Maybe the Pounce Chalk will adhere to the blue border fabric better than it did to the heavily starched fabrics in the interior of my quilt.

I'm linking today's post up with the following linky parties:

·       Whoop Whoop Fridays at Confessions of a Fabric Addict

·       Finished Or Not Friday at Alycia Quilts

·       Off the Wall Friday at Nina Marie Sayre


LIttle Penguin Quilts said...

I love seeing your progress on Spirit Song - it's so gorgeous! Looks like your quilting is really enhancing it, too. Good luck with your next steps!

Chris said...

So I also have Karen to blame for me buying a kit from Blueprint a few months ago also on great reduction. I think it has stars but very easy ones. I will pull it our someday to have a closer look. Good luck with all those diamonds.

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

LOL - blame me huh! what can I say it was a good sale - I have made quilts from kits before and some have plenty of fabric and some you have just enough so always make sure to measure twice before you cut - I have made from kits in the past and some have a lot of extra but the last one I did it was barely enough. I will look forward to seeing yours take shape.
Your quilt is looking so good and those rulers look like they work well.

chrisknits said...

I would suggest registration marks spaced to adapt your ruler to, that way you don't have to mark lines, just focus points. Love the new kit!! I agree the border needs more.

The Joyful Quilter said...

You are doing such a beautiful job with the quilting, Rebecca!! I don't think I would have the patience to add that many layers of quilting to a single quilt. Nope... SEW not my style! (Future me might laugh at that one day, but that day is not today.)

SJSM said...

I had a chuckle reading about starting a new quilt. It a good thing you have a large sewing studio and an extra room to keep supplies! When you said you would change the borders out, that was genius. I’d never considered that as an option with a quilt. Taking a look at your photo of the new quilt I now saw possibilities of punching the impact of the quilt up. I agree. Different borders would enhance that quilt. I also like the concept you have to quilt the borders of Spirit Song. That’s a winner. said...

Spirit Song is coming along beautifully! Let that border keep talking to you!! As for the new project, I'm glad you leaped. It is a cool looking project!

Tracy said...

A while ago, (8 years?!?) Kathy Schwartz at Tamarack Shack quilting posted a tutorial about a similar type quilted border. Hers is curved, but I think you could make it straight.
She breaks it down to a pretty simple and few stops technique. Have fun!

Alycia~Quiltygirl said...

Oh it is looking SO amazing!!!