Friday, November 4, 2022

Mary's Offset Gradients Quilts + A Show Ribbon for Talia's and Michelle's American Violet Quilt

Yippee, Skippy -- I get to share another of Mary's jaw-dropper quilts with you today!

Offset Gradients (Spectrum) Quilt for Mary

Mary's 57 x 78 Offset Gradients (Spectrum) Quilt, Pattern Available on Etsy Here

Mary used the Spectrum quilt pattern from Alison Glass to make her Offset Gradients quilt, and you can find that pattern for sale on Etsy here (this post contains affiliate links).  You can see Mary's completed quilt, all bound and finished, and read more about her process on her blog Quilting Is In My Blood here.  Oh my gosh, I love how this quilt turned out SO MUCH!  It was so hard to pack this up and ship it back to Mary when it was finished!!

Offset Gradients with Sunrise Chevron Quilting

We used Hobbs 80/20 Black Cotton/Polyester batting for this quilt because of the deep, rich fabric colors.  An 80/20 batting gives beautiful definition to a quilting design without getting too "puffy."

This is one of my favorite quilts that I've quilted because it's such an excellent example of how you can achieve the visual impact of custom quilting with an allover, edge-to-edge quilting design.  

These are beautiful fabrics, it's a fantastic pattern, and of course Mary did a great job of choosing those fabrics and carefully planning the color and value placement in her quilt.  This was already going to be a gorgeous quilt no matter how I quilted it.  But instead of just picking any of the many modern panto designs that could have looked wonderful on this quilt, Mary and I spent a lot of time going over the options until we settled on a quilting design that relates so well to the piecing that it's like the patchwork pattern and the quilting design were made for each other, like they are soul mates!  We liked Karlee Porter's Sunrise Chevron design for this quilt because of the way the unquilted space between the rows of quilting creates a subtle raised chevron that accentuates the diagonal lines in the patchwork design, and the way the triangular shapes in the quilting design are suggestive of refracted light shimmering through a prism.  Once I had this quilt loaded on my frame and ready to go, I took the extra time to scale the quilting design and position it on the quilt so that the high points of each row would land on the gray sashing fabric and the low points would land in the colored patchwork strips.  The result mimics a hand guided custom quilting job that would have required hours and hours of marking and ruler work.

Lightweight So Fine Thread in Smoke Just Melts Into the Fabrics

Sometimes you want the quilting thread to win "Best Supporting Actor" in a quilt, and other times the quilting thread is like those stage hands who sneak in like ninjas all in black to do a set change.  When I want the quilt to be like the invisible stage hands, I choose something thin but strong like So Fine 50 wt matte polyester from Superior Threads.  For this quilt, we chose So Fine in color Smoke to "disappear" into the fabrics so we see the texture of the quilting design more than the quilting stitches.

Detail of Sunrise Chevron Quilting in Smoke So Fine Thread

I used an even thinner Glide 60 wt thread in color Lead Gray in my bobbin, so that's what you (don't) see on the back side of the quilt:

Back Side of Mary's Quilt, Sunrise Chevron with 60 wt Thread

We all love to compare the Before and After quilting photos!  Here's the photo Mary took of her completed quilt top, right before she packed it up to ship it to me all the way from New Mexico:

Mary's Gorgeous Offset Gradients Quilt Top, Before Quilting

So, interestingly, the sample quilt that was photographed for the Spectrum Quilt cover photo below was custom quilted with an orange peel design individually stitched onto each of the quarter square triangle blocks.  Custom quilting like this costs more money than edge-to-edge, and it's harder to find a long arm quilter who even offers custom quilting anymore.  Obviously the cover quilt is beautiful and it's successful in that it's grabbing quilters' attention and helping to sell the quilt pattern.  But I think that Mary's version with a carefully selected and scaled geometric edge-to-edge design looks even better than the custom quilting on the pattern photo!  (Of course, as the person who did the quilting on Mary's quilt, I am TOTALLY biased!  😜)

Alison Glass Spectrum Pattern, available here on Etsy

American Violet Wins a Ribbon for Talia & Michelle

In other news, my clients Talia and Michelle surprised me with news that their American Violet quilt ribboned in the Fall In Love With Quilting 2022 show hosted by the Durham Orange Quilters' Guild two weeks ago.  Woo hoo!  Congratulations, Talia and Michelle!  I had no idea they were planning to enter this in a show when they brought it to me for quilting, but I try to treat every client's quilt as if it's headed for a show to be scrutinized by eagle-eyed judges with bright lights and magnifying glasses.  😊. Here's what American Violet looked like when I finished quilting it and pulled it off the frame:

Talia's and Michelle's 47 x 59 American Violet Quilt

Talia and Michelle used the Big Fences Lap Quilt pattern by Meredith Maddox of Come What May Creations to make their quilt, and that pattern is available for sale on Etsy here.  However, their quilt looks completely different from the traditional quilt in the pattern photo, since they reinterpreted the design with a glorious assortment of Kaffe Fassett Collective print fabrics.  I love it!  By the way, this is a very beginner-friendly pattern for any of you newbie quilters out there who are looking for your next project.  It's also "Jelly Roll Friendly," meaning that more experienced quilters could whip something up from this pattern in a weekend from a precut roll of 2.5" wide strips that are all from the same fabric collection, preselected to work beautifully together so you can get right to the sewing part.  This quilt looks great in the cool Kaffe Fassett colors that Talia and Michelle used, but it would also be a great way to make a quick quilt from a jelly roll from your favorite holiday fabric collection.  Just throwing these ideas out there, in case anyone has run out of projects and has an itch to stitch!

Splash E2E in 40 Tex Variegated Kyoto Garden Thread from YLI

Okay, now for the juicy details!  As much as I love the joyful explosion of pattern and color in a quilt made completely from Kaffe Fassett Collective fabrics, so much pattern definitely obscures the quilting.  Talia and I considered lots of different quilting designs, knowing that the fabrics were going to be the stars of this quilt and the quilting was going to play a supporting role.  We chose the Splash E2E design from Willow Leaf Studio for American Violet because of the way the curling tendrils of the quilting design reminded us of the playful illustrative style of many of the fabric prints in the quilt top.  You don't really see the entirety of the quilting design on this quilt at all, but you do see those funky curling tendrils here and there on the quilt, wherever the 40 Tex YLI variegated Machine Quilting Cotton thread in Kyoto Garden (shades of bright lime to Kelly green) has high contrast with a mostly solid dark blue or purple strip of fabric.  The bold variegated thread is much more striking in person, holding its own against the vivid colors of the quilt fabrics.  The curving lines of the Splash quilting design also work to soften the rigid lines of the patchwork, helping to meld the different prints together into a cohesive whole.  With this quilt, the overall effect is similar to an allover free motion quilting design.  As with Mary's Offset Gradients, and with every quilt I load on my frame, I took the time to custom scale the quilting design before I started stitching it, this time thinking about how far apart I wanted the lines of quilting to be and wanting to ensure that I had those quilted curly thingys small enough to fit within the patchwork strips so you can see the whole shape.

Winner, Winner, Chicken Dinner!  

Talia's and Michelle's quilt won a 3rd place ribbon in the Collaborative/Group Quilts, Longarm Quilted category at their guild's show.  Very cool!

Another big CONGRATULATIONS to Talia and Michelle, and thank you to Mary, Talia and Michelle for choosing me to quilt for you!

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!  I'm linking up with all the usual suspects, the linky parties listed on the left sidebar of my blog.  And what am I working on BESIDES customers' quilts, you might ask?  Well, I am about to treat myself by starting a NEW PROJECT so I'm poring over my bucket list and my Pinterest boards, my pattern stashes and books and the mountain of inspiration photos ripped out of magazines, trying to decide what that next project should be...  Stay tuned!  Have a great weekend, and happy quilting!


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

congrats on having a quilt you quilted place in a show!

Pamela Dempsey said...

The bright gradient quilt is so beautiful 😻! Great quilting ❤️

piecefulwendy said...

Once again some beautiful quilts, a feast for the eyes! It amazes me how you just know which thread is going to work well with the designs you choose.

Kathleen said...

That is a gorgeous quilt! I can see why you had a hard time giving it back. You fooled me with the quilting...I thought for sure it was custom!

Barb N said...

Wow, that Sunrise Chevron quilt is eye catching! And you've lined up the quilting pattern so well to match the vertical lines in the fabric. I want to make one now, dang it! The other quilt is awfully fun, too. said...

Your precision placement of lining up the quilting designs is spot on! You are a wizard! Congratulations on your quilting winning a ribbon too. . .that has to be special!

LA Paylor said...

stunning first quilt!!! the quilting adds the perfect lines to it, enhances it.

Frédérique - Quilting Patchwork Appliqué said...

Gorgeous rainbow quilt, and your quilting fits so perfectly the pattern. Congratulation for the ribbon!
Thank you for sharing these beauties, and linking up

Peacemeal said...

From a really nice quilt that I would be proud to own (just in case...) to a quilt that JUMPED OFF THE PAGE! Everyone has it - STUNNING! Thank you for sharing this. Amazing.

The Joyful Quilter said...

Lovely quilting, as always, Rebecca! I was surprised to see your name as the quilter of a quilt in the DOQ show. Congrats on the quilt winning a ribbon!

Linda @ kokaquilts said...

Two wonderful quilts! And congratulations on your quilting winning a ribbon too. I've often thought scaling the panto to fit the piecing/pattern made or breaks the finished effect... not many LAQs think of this :(

Nancy @ Grace and Peace Quilting said...

Wow, on the Sunrise Chevron carefully placed, Rebecca!!! Stunning! Congrats on being ribboned in the Group Quilt category!!!

Sandy said...

Glorious! That's the first word that popped into my head for these quilts. You have made two lovely tops become spectacular.

Mary said...

I am so thrilled with my finished Offset Gradients quilt. The quilting absolutely transformed it from a very pretty quilt top (if I don’t say so myself!!!) to a spectacular quilt that I will always treasure. I whole-heartedly recommend collaborating with Rebecca!

Leanne Parsons said...

You're right, the quilting you did on the Offset Gradients quilt is better than on the cover quilt! It is absolutely stunning! And congratulations on being a contributor to a prize-winning quilt, too :)

Marie said...

WOW, WOW, WOW! That Gradient quilt is amazing. It was beautiful before it was quilted but absolutely amazing afterwards - it's almost a different quilt. Gorgeous. And how great is it to be a prize-winner?

dq said...

Your quilting is what made this quilt! I drool over your quilting - ALWAYS!