Habitat

The Boston Modern Quilt Guild was asked to participate in Jay McCarroll’s Habitat challenge. We were each given a fat eighth of the fabrics in the BRIGHTS colorway.

However, one of the prints was not from the BRIGHTS colorway, but (accidentally?)  from the EARTH colorway.  And, as much as I tried, I could not bring myself to mix it in.

I also could not bring myself to add this print in, although looking at my finished quilt, I actually think it would have looked OK.

I spent a lot of time thinking about what I wanted to do for this quilt. As I haven’t been quilting for very long, I am trying to do something unique with each quilt to help me learn a new technique. I had a vision of doing something with curves. I drew a sketch on a manilla envelope and then Jake whipped out a really nice drawing in Adobe Illustrator.

 I was initially going to try to make the curves with finished seams, but then decided it just seemed too hard. Since then I have seen some tutorials of people doing designs similar to what I had envisioned (check out Amy’s tutorial from Stichery Dickory Dock).

I decided to cut a bazillion curved pieces of fabric from kona snow with a template. This was a perfect project to do while watching Dexter (we watched multiple seasons in a few weeks…).

 I sewed together the fabric squares with some kona solids mixed in (we were only allowed to add solids).  I used pomegranate, carnation, buttercup, peridot, aqua and black.  It actually looked so nice and simple that I almost stopped there. But then I decided that this was a challenge quilt so it would be better to do my original design. And I’m glad I did.

 The “template” pieces give the quilt an entirely different look.

I laid the template pieces on top of the squares and then did a snake-like stitch from one end to the other. It made a beautiful pattern on the back of the quilt.

 The night before the quilt was due, I had not yet finished sewing all the pieces on. Taz came over and was working on her challenge quilt and it was so nice to have company!

I finished the outside edges with a serger and then changed my mind multiple times on how I wanted to do the edging/binding. I felt like a traditional binding would look strange with all the curves so I wanted to wrap the template pieces around the edge. But when I wrapped them, they didn’t overlap anymore so you could see the serged seam. So, I cut larger pieces out of kona snow and sewed those on so they overlapped, but that looked strange, so I ripped all of those out (this is where I always hear Laura saying “If you’re going to sew you’ve got to be willing to rip…”), and put the original pieces back on.

 If I had been forward planning I would have turned right sides together on the ends to have a closed seam, but I couldn’t change it once all the pieces had been sewn on (this is hard to explain…). Or, if I had used a matching thread color it wouldn’t have been as noticeable.

Taz gave me the idea to fringe the edges of the pieces, and I love how that turned out. I was racing against the clock to get to our quilt guild meeting and Jake helped me fringe all the edges (*best husband EVER*).

 It turned out baby quilt size. I like it, but am not sure exactly what to do with it. Kitty quilt?

-erica