Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Up, up and Away!


Originally, I wasn't going to share this small quilt but as I thought more about it, this humble little quilt reminded me that quilting doesn't have to have rules and sometimes I make a quilt far too difficult with my own preconceived ideas.





This project started when I was given the below fabric panel to use for one of my charity quilts.  I am not a fan of panels but charities always love boy themed quilts so I thought I could easily make a quilt from it.







Well, this panel hung out in my sewing room for months.  I would frequently go to my fabric stash and try to get some inspiration but all I did was drag out tons of fabric that only had to be put back away.

The panel is actually quite large at about 30 x 40" and I just couldn't come up with any ideas on how to make a quilt from it.  I even put the project on my Q3 FAL list thinking that might motivate me to finish the project....Nope!



Then, one day while I was looking at block ideas, I came across some paper-pieced airplane blocks and the quilt finally clicked into place.  Why does the panel need to be part of the quilt top?  Instead, why not incorporate it into the quilt backing!



So I went to my fabric stash (because I don't like to buy fabric for my donation quilts) and pulled some red and blue fabric and a colorful text print for the background and made these cute paper pieced blocks from a pattern I found.  I had just enough to make 5 blocks of each color.  Finally, this project was moving forward!

Except it stalled immediately.  I needed fabric for the alternate blocks.  I had originally envisioned clouds but I didn't have enough of any one fabric.  And no matter how deep I dug, there just didn't seem to be any fabric in my stash that would work.




After a few weeks, I finally came to my senses and heard my inner child say, why do the clouds have to match?!  Simple as that!  By the end of the day, the quilt was pieced and quilted. 




And the panel, now residing on the back of the quilt, looks great with the light weight striped denim I used.  I quilted fun clouds all over the quilt so now its new owner can decided which side he (or she) likes best.  I even used a higher loft polyester batting that has been hanging around for years so the clouds are puffy and the quilt feels really squishy!

Thanks little quilt for reminding me to keep a more open mind.  I wanted to make a quilt to bring comfort to a child in crisis, not be scrutinized by the quilting police.  Even though I fought this quilt through the whole process, I am glad I stuck with it and learned the lessons it had within it.

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27 comments:

  1. Perfect. I love that airplane block.

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  2. Adorable quilt! I love that dates print you used with the airplane blocks. Very cheery, and a little someone will cherish it

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  3. Your quilt is great! Some little soul will love it. I am looking for ideas for charity quilts for boys and will keep this in mind. Thank you for your inspiration.

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  4. Oh my goodness: I love this quilt and I love the story behind it. I am so glad that you decided to share it. I love that airplane block. I remember it from the very first issue of Quilty that I ever bought. Now, if only I could learn how to paper-piece!

    Great work!

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  5. What a fantastic reminder to keep an open mind to inspiration. This quilt is so fun on both sides, and some lucky little boy is going to love it!

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  6. This is such a cute quilt! I love those airplane squares.

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  7. In so glad you shared this quilt with us , I love it! I think having different clouds adds interest to the layout and the big panel on the back makes it a two sided quilt.

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  8. I think this would be a great quilt for an airforce son.

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  9. I was getting into the trap where I thought my next quilt had to be more technical and more complicated than the last ... but then I recently finished a simple quilt and I think I love it more than some of the complicated ones. I love the different cloud fabrics, the sky is always changing :)

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  10. I had the same dilemma recently. I wanted to make a baby quilt for my goddaughter's baby which is expected in November. I had bought a bunch of dinosaur fabrics with no idea what I was going to do. I had not bought the full panel at the same time for the same reason as you- I tend to avoid them as I think it is cheating. I made a large shoo fly block with the different prints and a solid then could not think what to back it with. Then the penny dropped and I went back to the shop and bought the panel. So what if it is a simple quilt- it will look great when it is finished!

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  11. Perfect, everything is beautiful. What a lovely quilt for your son. I will pin it so sew something like this for my grandsons when they know what a plane is. Thanks for sharing.

    Love from Amsterdam

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  12. I love the little planes - great way to use up that panel. I have had a panel in my sewing room for at least two years... I don't think I like them either!

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  13. Very cute! I love the plane blocks.

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  14. Those little planes are so cute! May I ask what pattern you used for them? I am sure I have a pattern somewhere-key word somewhere, LOL

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  15. Nice quilt, and great lesson! I try to remember that inspiration can strike anywhere, we just need to remain open to it! Sometimes, like you, I get stuck though!

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  16. Great message - simple quilts are gorgeous too. I have a christmas panel in my box that's been there for nearly 2 years!

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  17. I love the quilt , it is awesome !

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  18. Sweet little quilt. Anyone would love it, for sure.
    Hugs

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  19. What a fun quilt (times two)! I'm sure there is a little boy somewhere who will be very happy with it. (Make what you love and never listen to the quilting police.)

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  20. I am so glad you decided to post about it. It helps to know that some quilts come easily and others don't. I think it turned out amazing, and I love the cloudy quilting.

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  21. Looks great! Isn't it nice when ideas (and stash) just start to fall in place over a period of time? Sometimes it's best to just walk away and wait for the ideas to come.

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  22. Isn't that funny how the Quilt Police get into our heads, when in fact, they really aren't there at all? A riot, eh? Glad you came to your senses and finished it up - it's adorable, and someone will surely love it.

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  23. What an adorable quilt and the planes are so cute!

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  24. Those paper pieced planes are charming

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  25. Yeah for you and it really turned out great. Sometimes thinking outside the box is just the ticket.

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  26. The result is wonderful.
    Thanks for sharing the process, especially since it wasn't a smooth one. It's nice to know that I'm not the only one struggling part way through making a quilt.

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  27. What a great solution! Don't you love how "obvious" an idea (like mixing cloud fabrics) seems after you get it, not matter how hard it was to come to it?
    claire aka knitnkwilt

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