This quilt is my own design, based on a fat quarter bundle of Animal Soup Fabric by Zoe Pearn in green. This first quilt is a smaller, crib-size quilt and was my first opportunity to experiment with whole-quilt ticker taping. I cut out rectangles in each of the fabrics in this set, then laid them out on a whole size piece of solid-colored cotton and stitched them on with a straight stitch, leaving the edges exposed. I batted this quilt with very high-loft batting, and then kept the quilting simple – just straight horizontal lines, to echo the shape of the rectangles and to emphasize the high-loft batting.
I know that usually you sew on the ticker tape fabrics with the batting already basted on, so that you sew and quilt at the same time (called “quilt-as-you-go”), but because the batting was so puffy, I didn’t relish the idea of sticking this entire piece of fabric under my sewing machine and trying to sew on the rectangles with that puffy batting on the bottom layer. Instead, I used the traditional method, sewing on the rectangles first, then pinning together the backing, batting, and front, quilting the entire project, and then binding it with stash fabric.
I’m experimenting with making the backs of my quilts more interesting – and using up leftover fabrics from the quilt front – instead of just using one whole piece of fabric for the backing. I liked the look of this very linear, almost “striping” effect I used for the back – I like the back so much, it’s really a two-sided quilt, either side could be the front!
As a final step, I threw the quilt in the wash and then the dryer (which I don’t usually do with newly finished projects) so that the edges of the ticker taping would begin to fray, then I trimmed off all of the loose threads. I love the finished product (although it’s a little puffy, maybe I won’t use this batting again!) I’d definitely like to experiment more with ticker taping, although I like the Bottled Rainbows approach of creating blocks, instead of doing a whole-quilt ticker taping, especially if I’m going to try out quilt-as-you-go techniques.
For this next quilt used the same fabrics, but in the blue color family. I used a traditional piecing method here, rectangles again but I wanted something that wasn’t too geometric, so I tried off-setting each row. When I realized how many rectangles I had, I added the dark-colored interior border, and then used up the rest of the rectangles as an outer border. The final border is a lighter colored linen from my stash.
I wanted to use up the remaining fabric on the back, but I wanted it to look planned – not just like I threw in what I had left to build the backing. Again, I almost like the back more than the front! I kept the quilting simple, but linear, to reflect the lines of the front and back – I quilted horizontally, in the ditch for each of the rows and also through the middle of each row. Then I quilted around the outside of the dark-colored border and the pieced rectangles border. I like how the quilting pattern adds to the grid-like look of the piecing.
I’ve noticed that brightly colored and/or contrasting bindings tend to look best – I think that the orange “pops” with both the front and the back. Designing my own layout is always such an interesting experience, I never know how the finished product will look or whether I’ll like it, and even though I lay it out before stitching it together, it’s really already too late at that point, since the pieces are all cut! I think one of the most challenging parts of design is when I find a fabric or fabrics that I love, and I want to show them off in a quilt, but of course the very nature of quilting is to cut the fabrics apart, so how to cut them apart, lay them out, and then sew them all together in a way that will end up looking good? For me, it comes down to experimentation – a lot of quilts made, some of which I don’t like very much – and now, having the chance to look and see what everyone else is doing, on blogs and on Flickr photos.Pin It