When life gives you scraps…

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…you have to improvise a little.

My last baby quilt left me with a bunch of HST clippings in aqua and teal hues. The scraps were barely 1.5” square,  would I have trimmed them up before sewing with them I might have ended with a grid as small as 0.5”. Nope, that wasn’t a day for tiny piecing and I don’t need much convincing to skip trimming in general. I was going to wing it that day and just piece those HSTs in the shapes they came in – no discrimination, just improvising.

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And as just sewing, not pressing, not trimming, not measuring, not squaring felt quite liberating I kept on adding borders to the HST panel and found some more coordinating scraps to make a separate improv log cabin piece. I quilted both of them up with multi directional straight line clusters and turned them into a pillow cover with my usual zipper finish.

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I’m your textbook perfectionist and quilting offers a perfect gateway to those of us who are. I’ve been trying to be more conscious about little flaws and imperfections that happen and to embrace them as part of the quilt making process and a quilt’s character. When improvising there are no points to be matched or measurements to be followed. Putting all that off the plate makes improv piecing an almost cathartic experience.

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Also, for the first time in forever, this is a project that was not intended as a gift for anyone or served any other kind of purpose with a deadline to make. But it happens to work well with some new things in our home – this might be because I’ve been in a ‘colours of the sea’ phase ;-)

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You can expect more improv content on veni vidi vicky next year, since I just joined a quilting bee focusing on this very technique. Talk to you soon and let’s raise a glass to all those missed points!

vicky_lang

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Golden Net baby quilt

Golden Net baby quilt | veni vidi vickyNeed a little colour therapy on this November day? Grab a pot of coffee and let me show you this happy quilt I just finished!

I’ve talked about the challenge to make quilts for boys on here before. Whereas I’m not an advocate for gendered toys, clothes or stereotypes in general, I definitely feel like there are a lot of fabric lines that appear rather feminine. I personally feel drawn to bolder coloured lines in general, so I’m not even talking about shades of pinks, but rather motifs which seem to include a lot of florals and whimsical designs lately. This isn’t that obvious until you’re actively trying to avoid them for a project.

Golden Net baby quilt | veni vidi vicky

So when I think up a baby boy quilt I work around a colour palette instead of a line or a designer. My initial idea for this quilt was a navy night sky lit with bright yellow stars; a plan I didn’t stick to as the design evolved (read more about the process here).

Golden Net baby quilt | veni vidi vicky

The quilt does involve the yellows and the dark blues as well as a collection of mint and orange to red coloured squares. I really like that it feels like a modern Twist on the four Primary colours, without being completely predictable.

Golden Net baby quilt | veni vidi vicky

Golden Net baby quilt | veni vidi vicky

But stars are no more! In an unexptected twist rays of starlight interwove into a golden net spun across the surface of the quilt. Magic!

GOLDEN NET BABY QUILT
finished size:
40×40″
pattern: my own, dubbed ‘Golden Net’
quilting design: straight lines, including crosshedge
fabric used: scrappy! includes Heather Givans, Lizzy House, Cotton + Steel, Katy Jones, Elizabeth Hartmann, Karen Lewis…
backing fabric: Backyard Roses by Nadra Ridgeway
binding: blank selvage fabric

Golden Net baby quilt | veni vidi vicky

Entrance Lupa! (You didn’t see that one coming, eh? ;-) ) Last weekend graced us with a day sans rain and word’s out the sun even made a short appearance. So I grabbed my crew to go out and take these photos. I hadn’t washed the quilt at that point, so I wasn’t too worried about it getting a little dirty. Let it be said though, I’m now reminded why I don’t usually set my designs on white background.

Okay, wherever you are, I hope weather’s actually nice there. If it is, let me now, so I can plan my move to your place. Until then I’ll sunbathe under my sewing light, stay quilty!

vicky_lang

This post is linked up with Modern Patch Monday at Modern Cologne Quilters and Handmade Monday at Sum of their Stories

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A literal Work in Progress [WIP]

This one started with me wanting to make a plus quilt and ended up somewhere pretty different.

When I design a quilt, I almost always start with the overall layout and composition. Once I have that figured out I will break the design down into smaller pieces. This way my quilts are rarely made up of repeating blocks. So how this baby quilt came about is pretty untraditional by my standards, but traditional in the common quilting sense.

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My starting point was the idea of a yellow plus with a orangey center, almost like an abstract star. These stars were to be set on a dark blue background. I lengthened the plus/star by a square on each end, so it would blend from yellow into a deeper red fabric in the center. When the dark blue hues came out really strong and the contrast felt too stark, I added in a group of mints to blend between the light warm hues and the dark background.

A literal Work in Progress | veni vidi vicky

At that stage I began cutting for my blocks. Pinned to the design wall I found the navy fabrics to be too loud still. Put next to each other the corners of 4 meeting blocks formed a really background heavy formation that took the focus away from the light block centers. This wasn’t going to work, the blocks needed to be separated by a white sashing (something I usually try to avoid, as it seems so old-fashioned to me personally).

A literal Work in Progress | veni vidi vicky

By breaking up the sashing with one yellow square in the middle of each side of the block I webbed the yellow strings back together, creating the look of a net spanned across the surface. This effect inspired the name of ‘Golden Net’, a little cheesy, but I settled ;-)

A literal Work in Progress | veni vidi vicky

I’m almost finished with this baby quilt now and will be back with pictures.
Have a good week everyone!

vicky_lang

This post is linked to Modern Patch Monday at Modern Cologne Quilters, Fabric Tuesday at Quilt Story, Sew Cute Tuesday at Young Texan Mama, Let's Bee Social at Sew Fresh Quilts, TGIFF this week at The Quilt Journal, Finish it Up Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts and Fabric Frenzy Friday at Fort Worth Fabric Studio.

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Match your quilt!

quilt / pouch match | veni vidi vickyMy friend came up with a genius idea! After I made her baby boy a quilt she asked me whether I could work the leftover fabric scraps into a pouch for her.

I mean seriously, of course I said yes. Not only do I enjoy making pouches, I was IN LOVE with the idea that she would carry around a small version of her baby’s quilt. And I’m almost sure a lot of my fellow quilters can appreciate the awesomeness of this as well!

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And all quilter’s geekery aside it makes sense that once you have found a colour/ fabric scheme you like, you would want another item out of it. Think about the perfect pair of jeans you finally, finally found – I bet you went back to buy another one! If you didn’t, you’re probably still beating yourself up over it years later. This is also the point where I’m strongly holding back on telling you that I own 5 pairs of my perfect jeans ;-)

grey/green Ombré Quilt | veni vidi vicky
Grey to Green Ombré baby quilt we’re working with

The baby quilt in question I showed you a couple of weeks ago. I never found a good name for it, so it got the descriptive title of Grey to Green Ombré Baby Quilt. I didn’t want to make an exact replica of it in form of a pouch, my goal was more to stay with the core idea of ombré.

quilt / pouch match | veni vidi vicky

This turned into a simple task: I cut up all the scraps I had left over from the project into 2” squares. I added a couple more gray fabrics I found in my scrap basket to great an even distribution of colour. I then pieced them together and proceeded with my usual pouch making technique, which is based on this tutorial with an added lining.

quilt / pouch match | veni vidi vickyThe ombré pouch will go into my friend’s diaper bag and will hold her essentials when she’s out and about with her baby boy. I assume that’s what happens when you have a baby – your stuff gets cramped into a tiny patchwork pouch whilst your kid’s stuff takes up all the space in your handbag =)

vicky_lang

This post is linked up with Modern Patch Monday at Modern Cologne Quilters, Let's Bee Social at Sew Fresh Quilts and Needle and Thread Thursday at My Quilt Infatuation.

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