Hello everyone! I also contributed to the friendly in-store Battle of Blueberry Park Challenge! According to The Modern Quilt Guild, “Modern quilts are primarily functional and inspired by modern design. Modern quilters work in different styles and define modern quilting in different ways, but several characteristics often appear which may help identify a modern quilt. These include, but are not limited to: the use of bold colors and prints, high contrast and graphic areas of solid color, improvisational piecing, minimalism, expansive negative space, and alternate grid work. “Modern traditionalism” or the updating of classic quilt designs is also often seen in modern quilting.”
My entry for The Battle of Blueberry Park is my first modern quilt project. My inspiration: The day Mary Fons came to present at The Sewing Studio is the day I decided to better understand and explore modern quilting techniques. Hearing her stories, seeing her quilts and the improvisational piecing she does on the back of her quilts opened up a whole new world for me. In this project, I interpret modern quilting in my own way. You can read about the process here:
I started by ironing Heat and Bond Light on to each 5” charm square, and then I used the Accuquilt Go! Big Electric Fabric Cutter and Go! Circle 5” Die (Part number 55012) to cut my 5” squares into 5” circles. I love the Go! Big Cutter because it helps me get my cutting done efficiently. All I had to do was lay my squares over the 5” circle die cutter, gently push the die through the machine, and it comes out on the other end with perfectly cut circles.
When you have finished cutting your squares into circles, the real fun begins. As you can see, there are A LOT of different options in placing the circles on the background fabric. Speaking of the background fabric, this awesome print gives the illusion that all of the squares are pieced together, when really it is a pre-made patchwork design!
I spent a while moving the circles here and there on the background fabric, playing with design and so forth. In the end, I ironed the circles down at random directly over each background square, and I love the outcome! Now you may be asking yourself: “Are the circles going to fray?” The answer is yes, because the circles were left with raw edges, they will eventually fray. I think this is one of the great design aspects of this quilt!
The next step is the quilting process. I used a scrap of Quilter’s Dream Batting and 1 yard of a great Michael Miller fabric I found in our 50% off bin at The Sewing Studio. I basted my quilt top, batting, and backing together using 505 temporary adhesive basting spray, then put a few safety pins in here and there for good measure, then took my project to the Babylock Crescendo for quilting.
I decided to quilt “wonky” straight lines to achieve a modern outcome. To do this, I set up my walking foot on the Crescendo, started at the top of my quilt, and reminded myself NOT to quilt a straight line (this can be hard if you are a perfectionist, but the outcome will be worth it). The distance between each line is the width of the walking foot. Repeat the process until your whole top is quilted.
I then squared my quilt top up, cut ½ yard for the binding, sub cut that into 2 ½” strips, and began sewing the strips together to make one long strip of binding for my quilt. I also cut a 2 ½” strip from my leftover backing fabric (something I had never done before) and incorporated that into the binding, it pulled the whole project together!
The last step is to attach the binding to the quilt, I accidentally attached mine with too wide a seam allowance, so turning it to the other side and trying to catch it while stitching in the ditch was difficult. BE SURE you are attaching your binding with ¼” seam allowance, no larger!
I hope you enjoyed reading this blog post as much as I enjoyed writing it. Now that the project is done and the challenge has passed, I cannot wait to display it as a table topper in my apartment!
*Note- if you have never used Heat n Bond before – here is the definition of the product & directions : HeatnBond® Lite is a paper backed, iron-on, sewable, double-sided adhesive for bonding fabric without extra weight or stiffness. Use it in place of pinning or basting for appliqué shapes on quilts, wall hangings and attire. Draw or print directly on the paper backing to easily design appliqué pieces! – Preheat iron to medium heat, No steam – Place adhesive on back of material to be bonded (paper liner should face up). -. Place and hold iron on the paper liner for 2 seconds. Repeat until entire surface is bonded. Allow to cool- Cut to size or shape needed. Peel off paper liner. – Place material, adhesive side down, on top of project. Press and hold iron for 6 seconds on each section until entire piece is bonded- Times listed above are for cotton. Iron thick fabrics an additional 2 seconds from the back of the project- Hand or Machine sew along edges . Definition was retrieved from http://www.thermowebonline.com/
- Blueberry Park Charm Pack
- Heat n Bond Lite
- Accuquilt Go! Big Electric Fabric Cutter
- Quilter’s Dream Batting
- 505 Temporary Spray Adhesive
- Go! Circle 5” Die (Part number 55012)
- Babylock Crescendo and Walking Foot