This quilt was inspired by my love of text fabrics. When I first saw Violet Craft's Madrona Road line at Spring Market, I knew I had to do something with her charcoal/black memoir print. I bought several yards of it when it first came out, and it sat unused for a bit, trying to think of a fun way to use it. As I started preparing mini samples for Sewing Summit, I decided I wanted to tackle a few Mariner's Compass blocks, and I thought the print would make a great background. I spent a good bit of time carefully cutting and placing each piece so that it would give a sense of movement throughout the quilt.
Using a black print for the background made me think of Amish quilts and their often vibrant use of solids, so I used some of V & Co's Simply Color ombres, which gave me the ability to cut several different shades of each color I was using from one single cut off the bolt.
While I adore the piecing in this quilt, I think the free-motion quilting might be my absolute favorite part! The four different blocks in the quilt each have their own different styles of free-motion quilting accenting the different solids. The background is quilted in black thread, in a micro stipple, throughout the quilt.
The Which Way North block features four different FMQ techniques: a simple FMQ echo on the blue outer points, an infinity FMQ on the lightest pink spokes, a wiggle FMQ on the darkest pink spokes, and a pulley styled FMQ on the medium pink outer points. That pulley style was so much fun to do, I definitely want to try it on something larger soon!
The Kaleidoscope block shows two different styles of FMQ: a simple FMQ echo on the green, blue, and pink points, and a wiggle on the light and dark orange points. I love how colorful this block is.
I think what really makes the quilting work on this mini is the coordinating threads for the quilting. This is the first project I've ever done that on, and after seeing the way Angela Walters' quilting gives such depth and texture by using coordinating threads, I might just be a convert to doing that. I say might because burying all those starts and stops in eleventy-million different shades of thread was a bit irksome, to say the least! But I love the final effect, so I suspect I'll be using coordinating thread in the future. Maybe not always, but it feels good to have strayed away from my usual white quilting thread.
Name: A Light in the Dark
Finished quilt measures: 24" square
Special techniques used: foundation paper piecing
Quilted by: yours truly, using various threads including Aurifil 50 wt, Madeira thread and Gutermann thread in many different colors and styles of FMQ
Best category: Doll/mini quilt, Home machine quilted quilt
BQF Number: 397