Sunday, August 16, 2015

The grandfather and nephew quilts

I've been a busy little beaver lately as I have a number of projects on to go, a few of which really were overdue to be finished. I could probably make a lot more progress in a timely manner if I did only one thing at a time, but where's the fun in that? ;)

So this one is the 'nephew quilt' and is quite overdue as said nephew has been with us for a year now ;) But, in my defense, I was a bit stumped what to make. Originally I had bought the fabric for two unrelated projects, but once I got it, I realized it wasn't quite right and it got set aside. Then one day I noticed how nicely all the colors went together and I had just enough to make a baby sized quilt, so one afternoon I took all of the squares and threw them together (mostly) at random and produced an improvisational quilt top. 

Quilt top
At first it was going to be a top of all HSTs, until I noticed one of the blocks I really liked (below) that I took out of the top and replaced with just a solid white block (above), putting the lone color block on the back of the quilt instead. And suddenly it was so much more interesting than before! The quilting was kept very simple but was also somewhat improvisational... I picked a random measurement from a seam and just repeated it on every diagonal row.

Quilt back
I usually avoid improv quilts as I'm never quite happy with how they come out... there's always some little detail that bugs me. But this one came together almost effortlessly, used up some fabric I had thought wouldn't end up getting used, and I couldn't be happier with the end result. :)

Quilt top
This one is the 'grandfather quilt' which I've made, obviously, for my grandfather. I had meant to have it done and sent off earlier in the year around his birthday, but he lives in California and the summer months aren't exactly lap quilt weather, so it's been hanging around on my work table. This one was definitely not improv and I have decided on and then changed my mind half a dozen times on just the fabrics alone. I started out with some very wild colors and patterns, but finally settled on using the Katagami bundle from Mad About Patchwork and I think it was a good choice for him.

Quilt top close up
The pattern is a simple herringbone pattern (I used this pattern from Camelot fabrics for inspiration) and while some of the directional prints absolutely drove me up the wall with the way they came together in the blocks, I can choke down my OCD and appreciate the end result ;) Lesson learned for next time though... either stick with solids, avoid directional prints, or buy yardage instead of fat quarters.

Quilt back
On the back I simply used up the scraps from the blues and made a single off-set stripe.

Quilt back and quilting close up
And for the quilting I used my 'default' quilting stitch of unevenly spaced wavy lines. It's not an exciting stitch to use, but I seem to like the finish it gives to quilts where I don't want the quilting to really be the focus. It gives a touchable texture without taking attention away from the patterns.

So there's those two done, finally! Now I can move on to the half a dozen other ones I've got in various states on my work table! I hold out somewhat dim hope of being caught up by Christmas :P

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