Wednesday, June 05, 2013

Christmas in June

This is a crazy time here for me.  I have 7-1/2 days until summer officially starts.  We have been running silly for 4-5 weeks with both of my boys in baseball, so I haven't been quilting or even piecing whatsoever on the weekends.  When the depart each morning on the bus, I am trying to be all business.  Except when we had 3 days of 90's last week, I did pretty good.  I am a sucker for hot temperatures!  It's back into the stinking 60's and 70's, so my next quilt should get stitched without hesitation.

This is one of Erin's many quilts that have come my way this year.  I am not behind, really.  I was not supposed to have this done 6 months's early for this season.  It is one of the more challenging quilts I have done for a client.  It's 90" square, and has an absolute TON of blank space.  Had I gotten this 2 years ago, I know I would have headed for the hills.  Now, however, I have some better ideas and instincts for what to put on the empty space.
The 36" center is a wreath, pieced of 1" squares in a fractal technique.  It is blurry looking, and creates all kinds of questions for how on earth to piece :-)
These outer white HST's are 36" on the edge!  THAT really is a LOT of blank space to design for. Additionally, the quilting always shows that much more on the white, so I knew it needed to be effective quilting too.  I think I rose to the challenge.  This quilt has my usual Hobbs 80/20 batting, with a layer of polydown over that.  This is a more cost effective means of getting the added loft which is often achieved with wool.  It makes the poinsettias appear more like trapunto, and gives great relief to the designs.  I also stitched the flowers and the feather swags in a gold shiny Glide thread, so in real life they show a little more as well.
The red triangles are about 20", and were fun to design as well.  Erin wanted holly, poinsettias, feathers and cross-hatching in her design.  Here's a small bit of holly, stitched in the gold, with a ribbon as an accent.  The red stitching is all with the Omni thread.  I love these feathers!
 The center wreath was the largest challenge.  Nothing stitched on it shows well, and I knew that would be the case.
 Here's a peek at the outer borders...Believe it or not, that crazy cross-hatch border took me the longest of anything on the quilt.  It was a meticulous treatment, with a lot of marking to keep the hatchings even.  The narrow holly border is all freehand, as is all my quilting, and is stitched with a red Glide thread.
 It is relatively Christmassy, without being full of Ho, Ho, Ho's and Santa Clauses.  It's classy and classic.  Hopefully she will love it!  I do :-)


Anonymous said...

You certainly lived up to this challenge...beautiful quilting!

KathyinMN said...

Wow-anther fantastic job. Love how you added Christmas into each of the border designs without it shouting CHRISTMAS. But the cross hatching on the border might be my favorite part-really ties the border back into the middle design. Fabulous job, thanks for sharing your work.

regan said...

Oh my gosh.....she's going to love it! This is gorgeous! And amazing work on those huge empty spaces! Awesome!

Unknown said...

What a gorgeous quilting job! You certainly made this quilt a stunner! She'll live it!

Marilyn said...

Wonderful quilting plan and execution. Thank you for sharing a little of your process!