Thursday, April 03, 2014

Baltimore Autumn

This is by far the most labor-intensive applique quilt I have ever seen and quilted!  It is a 70" square quilt, and has more leaves and berries than you can count.  It is all turned edge applique, with both batik and regular quilting cottons.  The quilt is absolutely lovely, and needed great quilting to accent it.  The only stipulation the client put on me is probably the one that I hate the most...No Feathers.  Oh my goodness, this quilt is totally and completely screaming for feathers.  What a killer!
It has a wool batting so that these appliques stay puffy.  Each and every applique and berry are ditch stitched with a Madiera Monolon clear thread, so as to give the shapes definition.  There is just no reason to go to the trouble of this much applique if you aren't going to outline stitch it.  That's my firm opinion, and anyone that tries to convince you otherwise is lazy.  Ditching is not for the faint at heart, but it is a necessity.  I used 430 yards of thread and 10 hours to ditch this quilt!
 The quilt leaves only a few places for placing good design elements.  The center medallion is one of them.  I wanted to frame it out somewhat to set it apart from the other applique blocks.  The cross-hatched squares that flank the center medallion tie nicely into the cross-hatching that is on the quilts outer border.  I tried to make this center a "scene of its own" so to speak.  A variety of different stitches in a coordinating SoFine thread just create a nice texture.  I have gotten back into using my SoFine on the last couple quilts -- I may have to get a few cones next week at MQX.  I actually haven't bought any of this 50wt thread in quite some time.
The birds and animals are all so cute and fall-like.  I just continued the McT-ish filler from the outer border into this area, but interspersed areas of pebbling just for visual interest.
The outer border is 9" wide, so I knew that from a design standpoint, it needed to be more than just one filler.  I chose the panels of curved crosshatching for the outermost areas, with the McT.  In near the narrow inner border, I quilted oak leaves.  I made a template from a cereal box, and traced it on with a marking pen. These fabrics appeared to have been prewashed (no bleed on my test), so I used the pens.  I also made a template for the scrolls.  Honestly, if left to my own devices, I would have put feathers here, but I had to design something else.  This area is densely filled with a meandering fill.  It makes the scrolls and leaves pop nicely.
 Here's another look at a corner.  Whoops...I just noticed where she forgot to applique the berries (doh!).

 As usual, heavily custom quilts have wonderful backs.  This one has all matching thread except the deep red bobbin I used on the narrow inner border.  It is really pretty.
That is my last quilt for a few days.  I quilted a queen edge-to-edge today, but won't probably get to another client quilt until April 14.  Next Wednesday, I am off to MQX for 4 days.  No point loading a client quilt just to have it sit on the frame a week!  I have a small feather piece I need to quilt for an article, and have started marking a silk whole-cloth.  That one is going to take me an eternity just to mark. So, have a good week....

20 comments:

JoshM said...

Beautiful! Do you know what the pattern is? Or is it an original?

Vicki W said...

Spectacular!

Bev said...

Oh wow! What a gorgeous quilt! AMAZING quilting (as usual). Just breathtaking! Thanks for sharing! XO

JoyceT said...

I hope your client falls to her knees and kisses the hem of your jeans when she sees this!

Debbie said...

I'm so glad you shared this spectacular quilt. Have a great time at the show!

Janet Ann said...

Absolutely Beautiful!

Leeanne said...

STUNNING!!

Susan Lawson said...

Woo-wee! this is pretty! I'm just in awe of the quilt-maker's skills and as always love your work!

Quiltdivajulie said...

Incredible work - both of you!! Sometimes those pesky restrictions really do have silver linings -- your designs are spot-on!!

Nancie Anne Quilts said...

Baltimore Autumn is on my Quilt Bucket List...if I ever dive in and get it done I'll send it off to you for as many feathers as you'd like to add to it!

Lorette Cole said...

Gorgeous quilt made stunningly fabulous with your quilting! Thanks for sharing all the photos!

Michele said...

Another jaw dropping fabulous job you did. I'm speechless again. See you next week!

Mary said...

Superb! Her needle turn appliqué, and your quilting designs! Wow!!

Rebecca Grace said...

Margaret, that is just spectacular! I agree, feathers would have looked great on that quilt, but I love how you echoed the oak leaves in the outer border.

So, when you ditch quilt around applique, do you always use monofilament rather than matching the thread to the background fabric?

Lynn said...

This is amazing! Your quilting enhances the lovely applique work and design. Great job and wonderful pictures too.

Diane E W said...

Wish I could see this in person. The pictures are wonderful but I think this is one you just need to see. It is beautiful and amazing. I don't know who made it but you put the life into it. Love the your quilting even though no feathers.

Esther said...

Wow Margaret, this is stunning. I thought several times about making this exact quilt, but decided it was too much for me, so kudos to the quilt maker, and high fives and tens to you for making is glorious with your quilting. It is beautiful, even without the feathers.

Pearl Pereira said...

Hi Margaret, your quilting on the Baltimore Autumn quilt is stunning. I am the designer publisher of this pattern. Your quilting is just wonderful it complements my design perfectly. I am finishing the applique border for a new quilt pattern stitching and surfing the web looking at photos of machine quilting. Trying to figure out how i want to quilt my new quilt. I can tell your quilting is inspirational.
Pearl
P3 Designs

Pearl Pereira said...

Hi Margaret,
Your quilting on the Baltimore Autumn quilt is stunning. I am the designer of this pattern. Your quilting is inspirational. I stumbled on your blog as i am stitching the border applique on a new quilt and looking at machine quilted photos online to improve my machine quilting. Your quilting is spectacular. I wish my quilting someday be as wonderful as ypurs.
Pearl Pereira
P3 Designs

Marcia Torres said...

You're absolutely nuts. This quilt is a pure diamond.