It is January! So I am sharing one of my 2018 completed projects, a Christmas quilt for my daughter!
This year I finally made a quilt with a pattern I had been meaning to try since I saw her awesome version here. I have been endlessly inspired by Erin’s beautiful quilts and color palates and I knew that this would be the perfect pattern to use for a Christmas quilt for my middle child who carries Christmas in her heart all year long.
I have nicknamed her my Christmas elf. She and her husband throw themselves wholeheartedly into the Christmas season and I thought it would be nice for them to have a special quilt to use during advent. Erin’s free pattern fit the bill. I love these oversized Ohio stars. I used a mixture of Christmas fabrics from the original Cotton and Steel designers lines (some of which I bought in a panic last spring when I worried that I wouldn’t be able to get them anymore) together with scraps from my stash, which included this red gingham left over from a set of matching duvet covers that were on my children’s bunkbeds back in Brooklyn when my Christmas elf was 3 (she is now almost 29!) I stuck mostly to blues and reds and aqua. I love that you can use so many different colors and still have a cohesive quilt. I have different versions floating through my head now.
I machine-pieced 9 blocks using the larger size of the stars from Erin’s pattern to make a throw quilt that is a bit bigger than 60 inches square. Then I started machine quilting it. Unfortunately, my machine had other ideas. I am generally a hand quilter and most of the machine quilting I have done has been on small pieces like the Tamarack Jacket. It worked a charm for that project but not so much for this quilt. Fortunately, I had seen Crinklelove‘s beautiful work on Instagram. It couldn’t have been easier to bundle off my top and bottom fabrics, choose a quilting design and wait a very short time. When I got the beautifully quilted quilt back, I was so pleased. I chose the orange peel design for the quilting because I like the juxtaposition of curved lines with straight-line piecing as can be seen here and here in my hand-quilted projects. I also liked the repeating star-like pattern in the quilting and the idea of an orange which brought me back to reading about early Christmas traditions that included oranges in the stocking. (Did that happen in the Little House books? I think it might have.) Here are some pictures of the finished quilt. Some of the fabrics are from stores I visited in person including The Cloth Pocket and Stitchlab in Austin, Tx. Using the fabrics in the quilt brought back memories of fun trips to those stores.
The oversized blocks came together so easily and it was just enough thinking-picking three fabrics that worked for each oversized-20 inch block-but not too much. I just made them at random but once I had 7 blocks, I laid them out to see how the values worked and then did a sort of tic tac toe grid alternating darker and lighter backgrounds which you can see here.
It is fun to finally share this project! I used the vivid filter in this picture to give a better idea of what the colors look like. The light was very stark on the day we took pictures. I have been vivifying all the things lately. 🙂
I can’t recommend Erin’s blog, quilt patterns and tutorials more highly. She will be hosting a sewalong on Instagram for her new beautiful squash blossom pattern this spring and believe me, I will be participating. After 4 busy years of sewing, I have accumulated quite a bit of fabric and I am excited to make all the quilts this year. If you are new to quilting, try this pattern! It is a great place to start. I plan to try to make one of these for each of the rest of my children. Between us, my husband and I have five which seems like a lot of work but really you could piece this top in a couple of afternoons, even if you new to sewing. I am also saving all of my linen scraps to make a larger version for our bed.
Give it a try! Happy sewing and happy quilting! Ho ho ho!