About 3 years ago, John asked me to make him a quilt, so off to Fabricland we went, and he even picked out all the fabrics! I was so happy to finally be able to make him something. He doesn't often make requests. I had originally planned this super complex Canasta pattern (by Elizabeth Hartman of Oh Fransson), but it involved so much cutting and piecing! I started it with gusto, but then it got thrown in the corner one day so I could work on something else, and it became super intimidating every time I thought about it. I'm not sure why, it's just a bunch of straight lines, but anyway, I found I just could not go back to it. Everytime I thought about picking it up again, there were pantries to be straightened, carpets to vacuum, and sock drawers to organize.
So at the beginning of this year, I thought, this is stupid. I have tons of fabric, let's change the pattern, and I came up with this. It's the biggest quilt I have ever made; somewhere in between a Queen and a King. I was going to piece the back together, but then I found this awesome fabric made especially for quilt backs at Fabric.com. Who knew they made fabric just for this purpose?
I saw a tutorial for a similar quilt block somewhere, but I can't remember where (Oops!). Anyway, here's how I did it.
First... cut out a bunch of squares (you need nine per block and the size depends on how big you want your finished block to be - mine squares were 8"x 8").
Then you sew them together:
Then you cut them:
Then you rearrange them in a pleasing manor (just by turning the cut blocks) and sew them back together:
And Voila! A fancy quilt block.
One you've made a bunch of these, you sew them together and you have a quilt top. Easy peasy!
While I struggled a lot with this quilt. I am super happy with how it turned out. I didn't do any fancy free hand quilting or anything, mostly because I don't know how, and the prospect of screwing up everything I had done up until the quilting point freaked me out. So I used my old stand-by stitch in the ditch method and while it's not perfect, I think it looks pretty good. It's the sixth quilt I've ever made. I'm pretty proud of it, can you tell? (It passes Solomon's inspection too!)
John is pretty happy with it too. He made some lovely fabric choices, which I supplemented with a few of my own choices from the Maui Quilt Shop. I had to replace the fabrics I cut up for the original Canasta blocks (which I may still sew up into a little lap quilt).
It feels so good to have this baby done! It's weight off my shoulders and I am so happy to be able to give my husband something that I've made (and that he likes).
Have you ever made a quilt? How about a handmade gift?