Tuesday, October 17, 2017


For some reason, I fell out of love with this quilt the moment I started in on the quilting. Something just didn't feel right, as often is the case with curvy straight-line. I think it had something to do with the thread color I chose. With the variations in color in the quilt, nothing I had was the perfect choice - I even momentarily wondered if this is why Jill/Pie Lady Quilts often uses mono-filament thread for her value quilts. But I wasn't prepared to go there quite yet, so I forged ahead, and often throughout the process I doubted my action.

The quilt started with high hopes at our guild retreat last month. I had actually talked to Jill a bit about playing with value quilts, and she mentioned that Nancy Crow suggests using at least 7 different values in a quilt. Since I had a pretty generous stack of cool Cotton Supreme Solids, I actually chose 9 and then for a bit of contrast, some Kona Pink Flamingo. Again inspired by an actual Starbucks cup, I made my own template, and then was able to cut all the tumbler shapes to size with the help of the measurements on my cutting board. [Like this....]

I gotta say, tumbler quilts go together as quick as anything I know. This one measures 56" square, and piecing the top took just a few hours once the blocks were cut. Besides making the top at retreat, I also recruited my guild-mate's help in pattern-matching a backing. Matt/@odditease is obsessive about this technique, and gave me plenty of good tips.

So up to that point, I was super pleased with what I had going. And now that it's done, I'm happy enough with the quilting. I used two Aurifil 50wts - #2810 (Turquoise) and #5006 (Light Turquoise) - for the bulk of the quilting, and obviously they're perfectly fine in and of themselves. I think it was all those different shades of fabric that made me question my choices. On some blocks, the quilting is pretty much hidden, while in others it stands out alot. I really don't know what would have been a better choice, actually. And I'll just say that almost always with quilting such as this, I always doubt it until I really get into it. The denser it gets, the more I fall back in love with it. Oh, and I did quilt the pink blocks with matching thread in squarish spirals - #2435 (Peachy Pink) - and I really like that bit.

I didn't have enough of any of my solids for a binding, and scrappy didn't seem quite right. Fortunately, I found the perfect unidentified shot cotton in my stash. Blue, cross-woven with a dark green, it totally 'fit' with those greener blocks included in the quilt.

At some point, I'm pretty sure there will be another in what I am beginning to consider a series. With Double Tall Skinny Vanilla, and now Venti, I feel like there's more I want to explore, and the tumbler block is such a friendly one to partner with. Time will tell.

This quilt was on my Q4 2017 Finish-A-Long list!