Monday, January 17, 2011

Workshop in Progess - January 19, 2011

Cheryl over at Naptime Quilter is hosting

This is an opportunity to show what you are working on

and get some feed back on questions you might have.

This is my first time participating in this workshop and I am thrilled to have the chance to get some wonderful advice from all of you!

I have been working on this commissioned quilt for a friend.

You can see how it started here.

She gave my free reign on everything!

It is a disappearing nine patch block made with all Kaffe Fassett fabrics.

It measures 59" x 72" right now, but needs to be a bit bigger.

It is a wedding present for a queen size bed.

So my dilemma is the borders.

I'm not big on borders, but I thought this quilt needed one to frame

all that delicious fabric.

So first off above, a three inch blue and 5" squares of the same fabric.

Then I added another three inch blue. Too heavy I think.

Why is this picture on it's side?

Anyway, then I tried the three inch blue strips with 3"blocks and spaced them apart.

I think it's still too heavy, but I like the idea of this. Maybe if I scaled everything down by half it wouldn't be so heavy???

This last shot is of the border at 1.5" with the 5" blocks. So far I like this, but I could really use some help here. And if you have another idea entirely, let's hear it!

I am open to anything.

Thanks again to Cheryl for putting this all together and hosting!


  1. What a gorgeous quilt! I love the three inch blue strips with 3"blocks and spaced apart - but that is a tremendous amount of work. Have you considered doing just a strip of the solid blue, followed by a stripe of another solid color (like a fuchsia or a yellow) and doing the binding in yet another solid color? That would really frame the quilt and give the eye a place to rest. Thanks for sharing!

  2. I am favouring the 1.5" border with the pieced blocks, but I'm not sure if 5" or 3" blocks would be best. It really depends on scale and how the quilt looks as a whole, which is hard to get a sense of from the photos. Love that profusion of colour!

  3. I like the three inch blue strips with 3" blocks spaced apart, but I agree it might be a bit heavy. What if you cut down the blue strips to 1.5 inches on each side?

  4. Hi, have you considered using a slightly lighter colour, or even a really subtle pattern (e.g. a marble or a mirage - not sure if mirage is a common term, it's what connecting threads calls it)? That would take a lot of the 'heaviness' out of it.
    I like the 3" blocks with the stripes best because it's like a gallery of some of the fabrics you used in the quilt and a bit calmer than the center!
    I made a large D9P quilt out of all pink fabrics for a friend, with an improv border, see here (scroll down):

    Good luck!
    Cheers, Christine

  5. A queen bed is 60x80 inches, and the standard queen quilt is 86 x 93 inches (this let's the quilt fall 13 inches on all sides but the top). I like the 1.5 inch strip with the 5 inch squares, but I think it would be fun, too, if those squares were smaller (maybe 3 rows of 2.5 inch squares). Or, you could make some more disappearing 9 patches with the 5 inch squares... You might not even need the blue, have it be a subtle change between the top and the sides. It looks beautiful! Someone will be very lucky to get it!

  6. Agree with TAF, above, that the blue border should be narrower, and that the squares should be a bit smaller too - like the idea of more disappearing 9 patch as part of the border. Some way of lightening/opening up the border, I think the contrast between the solid dark blue and the beautiful color explosion is almost a bit much - draws the eye to the border and less to the wonderfulness inside it.

  7. Beautiful colours! I definitely prefer the narrower blue border, with the outer border made from charms. What about a piano-key layout for the outer border? i.e. cut the strips so that they're the same width as the smaller rectangles in the quilt top.

  8. Lovely colouring in the blocks. You might consider a narrower strip, really narrow. If there isn't any good reason for the blue I'd use a different colour for that thin border, maybe in the pink/rose family or a gold. Then I'd just add another row of the disappearing nine patch around the outside for the 'border'. Good job so far.

  9. Hmmmmm....I'd audition a few other colors where you have the solid blue. Maybe a lighter shade, or a different color all together. (That solid is quite different from the center.) Maybe it needs a little bit of a pattern to connect with the rest of it. The squares spaced apart are interesting...what if they stairstepped from the edge of the center to the edge of the quilt? So many options!

    Fun to see your'll be fun to see what it becomes!

  10. I really like the blocks spaced apart, and I also like the idea of making the blue narrower. Maybe 5" blocks with 1.5-2" blue strips between and on either side. Is that wide enough to get you to the size you need?

    I like the dark blue (just narrower) to balance out the riot of color in the rest of the quilt. I think it frames all those beautiful, busy fabrics nicely.

    Thanks for sharing!

  11. Just love the fabrics you have used! I am at the same stage with a similar quilt in red, oranges and greens and have decided to go for a very narrow blue border (an inch) followed by a wider border (6 inches I think) of a Kaffe Fassett fabric. I was gong to do a pieced squares border like yours until I found the perfect border fabric and decided I would go for that and keep the exuberance of the quilt contained in the centre. I look forward to seeing how your quilt progresses - have fun!

  12. Hi Lisa! First of all, love the quilt! Gorgeous colors/fabrics. And I like the idea of the floating squares as a border - but I wouldn't use a solid fabric, like the blue. Doesn't seem to relate to the middle - I would use a deep-toned print instead, with floating squares in mid and lighter/contrasting prints. Good luck!

  13. Thanks to everyone for all the positive feedback! I think I have found a different fabric to replace the blue. I'll be playing around with this and let you know what I decide on. So great to have so many fresh eyes giving suggestions.

  14. I do like floating squares a lot, but am wondering if you have tried setting the border squares on point?

  15. I love the disappearing 9-patch of Kaffe fabrics! I like the idea of a narrow border to separate things, but maybe a not-so-intense shade of blue? and maybe a border of fabulous Kaffe fabric rather than a pieced border.

  16. I like the squares spaced apart, with perhaps a slightly narrower blue. That blue really makes it pop!

  17. I'm with you, it is rather heavy. I think part of it is the sudden switch to solids after such vivid prints.

    Is it possible to just make more blocks? Or use the blocks from the prints you have, all by themselves? The change in shape of blocks should be enough of a change in rhythm of the quilt.

    Good luck!