Saturday, December 28, 2019

Tinsel Quilt

I recently finished one of my oldest WIPs, started in Spring of 2012. This quilt has a long story. I was a new quilter and I had just joined the Central Jersey Modern Quilt Guild and signed up for my very first workshop with Kaffe Fassett.

I was so new to quilting that I did not even have a fabric stash or had never heard of Kaffe Fassett. Apparently the quilt was all about playing with color, mostly large florals was what I had taken away from theme of the workshop. We needed to bring 20-30 fat quarters of large to small scale floral fabric.

I had not yet discovered online fabric shopping and bought most of my fabric at a local fabric store on Route 22 in NJ. They carried a lot of traditional quilting fabric along with some Amy Butler fabric. I loved her fabric and picked up pretty much a fat quarter each of everything they had in stock. I imagined the color theme of the quilt to be blue, green and yellow and shopped accordingly. Armed with my now a large collection of blue, green and yellow fabric I showed up for the workshop.

This is where the it went down hill for me. I had no idea Kaffe Fassett had his own extensive collection of fabric or that he was such a prolific quilt maker. I was the only one at the workshop with non Kaffe fabric. Most others were fully aware of his extensive body of work which I was just discovering at the workshop. My stack of fabrics did not have enough color variation and just did not have that oomph that the pattern required. At the end of the day I had come up with this. I even bought some more fabric at the workshop that had pops of pink and red in it which brought some variation to my set of fabrics.

This arrangement on the design wall did not resonate with me and I was not sure I had it in me to complete the quilt. I brought home the pieces I had cut out along with the rest of the fabric and it just lay there as I had no idea what to do with it.

As my quilting skills grew over the years and I became more proficient with color and value in quilts I knew the only way to tackle this is to pick a pattern where I would cut up the fabric in small pieces. The big bold prints would bring a lot of movement and color variation to the quilt. Then I was on a look out for a quilt pattern that required a lot of small pieces when I saw the Tinsel quilt pattern by Cotton and Steel in a quilting catalog.

@copyright Cotton and Steel

Then I cut up all the fabric and here is my version of quilt.

The variations in color along with the pops of red gives it a nice movement. I did orange peel quilting as the 2" squares provide a nice grid for the peels. Added a candy stripe binding to give it an extra pop of color. I backed it with a vintage sheet that I have been hoarding for a while now. Also added a label on the binding.

It is a fairly large quilt at 84" x 84" and is already being put to good use at home. It is a constant reminder of how far I have come with my skills.

Sunday, September 22, 2019

Star Cake Quilt

I needed a quilt for a colleagues baby and I had whole six months to get to it. Obviously I started making the quilt the morning of and finished it in the nick of time. I used a free pattern by Fat Quarter Shop called Star Cakes to come up with the blocks. It went together pretty quick and for a last minute thing I do like how it turned out.

Courthouse Color Play Quilt

I took a workshop by Krista Hennebury called 'Courthouse Color Play'. This involved making an improv courthouse block quilt. I was still on the extreme color kick and decided to use all my solid scraps for this one. I simply picked one color after another hoping that it would all come together in the end. Obviously it needed a black & white binding to contrast with the colors and some hand quilting!

Sunday, September 15, 2019

Quarter Log Cabins

When I saw Alison Glass's Kaleidoscope collection of shot cottons I had to try them. However I definitely don't need more fabric so decided to order a charm pack and experience the saturated colors and texture in person. When they arrived I could not just let them sit and decided to make tiny quarter log cabins from them. I just randomly paired colors with differing values and sewed a few blocks and this is what I got in the end.

I see a lot of this fabric in my future.

Monday, January 21, 2019


Last summer I took a quilt workshop with Sujata Shah where we followed techniques outlined in her book Cultural Fusion Quilts. Sujata is inspired by the tribal quilts of India which are very bright and cheerful. This is my version of a cultural fusion quilt. I decided to name this quilt "Carnival", it is truly a riot of color.

All the blocks are cut freehand and the idea is to make a different sets of blocks and then combine them together. I made a few blocks at the workshop, but carried with me some blocks that I had made earlier and was not quite sure what to do with them. 

Tribal Indian quilts are usually very colorful and tactile with mirrors, pom-poms, buttons, shells and what else. I decided to follow that prompt and do the same with my quilt. I added a prairie point edge which ties all the colors together. 

I quilted it in sections, each time using a different technique. I tied the center blocks. Machine quilted the strips, button tied the cross blocks and hand quilted the rest. Finally added pom-poms to the four corners. I was tempted to add mirrors but refrained...:)

Here are a few more pictures.