Wednesday, May 21, 2014

My next quilt: Stars and Suns

My sister Cindy came to town, and I asked her how one goes about machine quilting for a show-quality quilt, which I want the Perfect Square quilt to be.  After she showed me, I told her that I have been thinking about making a simpler quilt, since I'm still very intimidated by the thought of the Perfect Square.  She agreed that that would probably be a good idea.

We will soon be visiting my second daughter, Elizabeth, spending three weeks at her house in Arizona to help her care for her soon-to-be-newborn son Matthew and her two older sons, Joshua and David.  Liz's husband Eric is in the National Guard, and his annual two-week training is scheduled for right when Matthew is expected to arrive.  I remembered a fabric I like, which features stars and swirling gas clouds on a deep blue background.  I knew it was a popular fabric, and that the pattern was available in various colors.  I came up with a design that features squares of this fabric, with one bright color in the shape of two diamonds, one on top of the other, with two darker colors for accents.  The pieces will be as simple as can be: nothing but squares.  The border will be right triangles, with the hypotenuse on the squares, and other triangles of the same size filling in.  That's a horrible description, but the idea is simple.  Then, there will be bright yellow circles in applique with batting inside to raise them, and the quilting will be circles in gold thread centered on the appliqued circles.  The circles will be random sizes, probably ranging from three inches to eight inches, and in random locations.  There will probably around eight of them.

I had planned on using eight-inch squares, and the border would be about 4 inches wide.  But then I looked up quilt sizes.  I found that if I went to 6-inch squares, I'd have the size of a baby quilt, and if I went to 9-inch squares I'd have the size of a twin quilt.  David is now three, and Joshua is around five.  David has been seeing Joshua's "grandfather blanket" most of his life.  I will be working on this quilt in Arizona.  If David sees me working on a quilt for Matthew, he would probably be jealous.  So, I'll make this a twin quilt for David.  Of course, that means that after this, I'll have to make a quilt for Matthew.  By the time that one's finished, Matthew will be old enough to appreciate it.

I went to Joanne Fabric and bought the pattern I wanted in red, deep blue and black.  The two diamonds will be done in red.  The squares have been cut out.  Here they are, laid out in the final arrangement:

Here is a closeup of the fabric:

And here (in an unfortunately dark snapshot) is the fabric for the appliqued circles: