I inherited a jelly roll quilt from my mom, who got it from a friend of hers who got it at an estate sale. This friend has amazing luck at estate sales! She once got a brand new in the box Bernina sewing machine for $5 and in her most recent stroke of luck, landed at an estate sale of a woman whose only hobby was quilting and whose house was full of quilt tops, fabric and other sewing supplies.
The jelly roll wasn’t really my thing, to be honest, mainly because the colors are so dark. But I thought it would be fun to play with so I sewed all the strips together, cut them up and sewed them back together again. Though I don’t love this quilt, it was kind of fun to work on. The fabric reminds me of neckties which reminded me of a promise I made to my brother of making a quilt out of our grandfather’s old neckties. Not exactly the inspiration I was expecting :-)
I used every scrap of the jelly roll. I ended up with a few orphans which fit perfectly into the corners with some bright yellow fabric I had. Normally I’m kind of jazzed about having left over fabric scraps, but as I said, these colors aren’t really my thing, so I’m please to have made a “zero waste quilt”.
I used an old sheet for the back. This batting is a little different than the batting I’ve been using – it has a little less fluff – which made for really easy quilting (no puckering!).
This quilt is for Project Linus.
My mom and I are new members of the New England Quilt Museum. Last month we went to check out a couple of exhibits and as we entered, we were asked “Are you here to see the quilts or the fabric sale?” Fabric sale?!? Apparently we picked the one Saturday they have each year to hold a gigantic fabric sale. We checked out the exhibits and yes, went to the sale – it was for a good cause, after all :-) The idea was to fill a bag for $X, with all the money going back to the museum. This was one of the most exciting and overwhelming experiences I’ve ever had as a quilter! So much fabric! So many decisions to make! I’m so picky! And I didn’t really have any quilts on my to do list, so I couldn’t imagine what I’d do with all of the fabric! We each ended up with ~7lbs of fabric and as a testament to how stressed it made me feel to have that much fabric in my home, I bored my bf to tears with taking about my anxiety over it all weekend.
So I did what any self-respecting quilter would do – I whipped together a quick quilt just to get some of that 7lbs of fabric out of my house! It’s a half-rectangle quilt and due to the fabric that was available at the sale, is kind of a throwback to all those calico quilts the pioneer women made.
I swapped a couple of rows to make them upside down just to make the quilt a little more interesting.
Isn’t this backing wild? It’s from IKEA and I just love it. I love how traditional the front of the quilt it and how modern the back is.
If you look in the upper right corner of this picture, you can see a stack of fabric on top of a plastic bag. The bag has all of my quilts that are ready to be turned into Project Linus; the stack of fabric is just *some* of what I got at the sale. Eeep – time to make more quilts!
I’m going to file this quilt under “I had an idea for a quilt but then forgot what it was and by the time I remembered it, it was too late so I decided to just power through and get it done.” Has this ever happened to you? This quilt totally didn’t turn out the way I planned and once I realized what my plan was, it was too late so I just played a bit and it ended up as a large courthouse steps quilt. It still kind of worked out and I enjoyed just playing a bit.
The back is a fun numbers fabric that, honestly, is just fine for a bright quit like this.
I must confess that the biggest mistake I made with this quilt is the quilting. I had used my zigzag stitch for something just before I started quilting and forgot to change it back. Instead of picking out the stitches, I just went with it and used zigzag stitching for all of the quilting. It kinds of adds a nice texture to the quilt and I may just have to make this same “mistake” again sometime :-)
This quilt is for Project Linus. I’ll do a better job of planning out my next quilt to avoid the same frustrations!
I have to confess that I really don’t like the last quilt I made. There’s nothing really wrong with it, it’s just not “me”. The colors don’t play the way I like fabric colors to play together which distracts from the pattern. It was a fun experiment but once it was done I could not wait to start my next project.
Enter the churn dash quilt! It’s a really traditional pattern and it was fund to use up a ton of fabrics that probably look boringly familiar to anyone who’s read more than a post of this blog. I like bright happy colors and I love how all the fabrics worked together. The block is pretty simple but there’s a lot of pieces and a lot of trimming. There are 80 blocks in this quilt and it was nice to work on a more “long term” project.
Amazingly, I managed to have 80 unique blocks. A few are mirrors of each other but none are the same. I know there are quilters that cut out their entire quilts before sewing. I’m more of a start cutting and then do some sewing and see how much fabric the blocks use and the hope you don’t run out by the end. I really underestimated the amount of fabric I’d need for this quilt and ended up doing a few raids on my stash. It all worked out – it usually does :-)
There are three scrappy-ish blocks that I absolutely love. Can you spot two of them in the picture above? I’m glad I didn’t make every block scrappy as I think that would have been too much. There are just enough to make things a little interesting.
I had the perfect fabric for the back!
I absolutely love how this quilt turned out! And I’m thrilled to be back in my “safe zone” of bright, happy quilts :-)
Sometimes I struggle to execute a quilting idea in my head. This is one of the those quilts. I don’t know if it’s the color combination or the design, but there’s something about this quilt that I don’t love. I like the fabrics . . . as individual fabrics. I like the design . . . but not all together. Actually, if I’m being honest, my favorite part of the quilt is the fabric I used for the back. I suppose this is all part of both the learning and creative processes, but it’s hard not to feel like I’ve failed when I haven’t totally fallen in love with a quilt that I spent time designing and executing. I’m not sure I would call this an “ugly quilt”, it just doesn’t sit right with me. Maybe the next quilt will be a happier finish :-)