My first ever patchwork quilt.

When I booked my first day course at Yarnia in Belvedere I have to say I was a little bit ambivalent  about the whole quilting, patchwork thing, but I have to say two courses down the line and another one booked and I am hooked.

I’ve enjoyed learning new skills and it’s an absolute joy that the learning is practical rather than cerebral and theoretical, so relaxing!  I can legitimately indulge myself and work with mouth-watering fabrics in multitudes of colour palettes. Mmmm. I’ve met great people and had fun and Kate, our teacher, is skilled and so positive and encouraging.

Juicy Jelly

Jelly Roll and Charm Pack
Jelly Roll and Charm Pack

So the first attempt at a patchwork quilt was the Juicy Jelly. Made with a charm pack and a jelly roll (loving the new language too), ready cut squares and strips that meant just enough time cutting fabric to learn some techniques but not so much that impatience crept  up – I soon found myself beginning to sew the patches together.

The 9 and 5 inch strips were to make a border for the 5 inch squares. Matching up the colours and patterns needed a bit of thought and I had to be careful not to use all my favourites first.

A fab tip

Sewing the squares together in a chain really speeded things up. A really clever tip.

Sewing the patch together
Sewing the patch together

More experienced quilters managed to put their patchwork together on the day but I was a bit slower and didn’t want to rush but Kate had explained well and I felt confident about continuing at home to get the rest done.

The border was going to be made up of ‘piano keys’ made from the remaining jelly roll and I chose a cream self-coloured ditsy print fabric to edge the patchwork.

The piano keys would be cut into 4 equal strips to make the border.
The piano keys would be cut into 4 equal strips to make the border.

I commandeered the kitchen and the dining room tables when I was putting my squares together, I was just a little bit paranoid about not getting the same patterns and colours next to each other; not having blocks where one colour dominated or, once again, that I didn’t use up all my favourite fabric squares first, leaving blocks that I might not like at all. I was eventually satisfied with how it looked; let’s call it ‘deliberately random’!

Time then to add three border strips; first the cream, then the ‘piano key’ and lastly a final border of the cream.

So, here it is, the finished patchwork.

Finished patchwork
Finished patchwork

I think it does look a bit redder towards the back there but all in all I’m pleased with the result.

All that remains is to add the wadding and backing, to bind the edges and decide on quilting! Time to get back to practicing some free motion quilting and to decide if I can use some on the quilt.

And am I going to do it again? Hell yes – next Friday ‘Hugs and Kisses’ quilt. Kate has one on her lovely website here.

 

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