Sunday, May 31, 2015

Cool Modern Lines Improv Baby Quilt

This quilt was a spur-of-the-moment improv creation. I started digging through my scrap drawers a few months ago, and came across a pile of solids that I'd passed over time and time again. Honestly, the colours just didn't feel... current. Deep, mossy greens, grey-blue-green, and something that looked a little like hospital scrubs... not the most inspiring palette at first glance. For some reason I picked them up again, and the colours seemed to take on a new life when paired with cool moody blues and greys, on a background of winter white.

I'm kind of in love with these colours now - the feeling of this quilt reminds me of a lake in the boreal forest, blanketed in fog. The deep green near the top is so spruce tree, and one of my favourite prints seals the deal: the birch trees from Backyard Baby by Michael Miller. I bought this fabric three and a half years ago when I was starting to sew for my daughter's nursery before she was born; I used it in her baby quilt and even had some of it in a frame on her bedroom wall. It will always have a special place in my heart, which makes it hard to part with, but it just felt right in this quilt.

I didn't really have a solid plan when I started cutting, and I've been wanting to incorporate more improv into my work, so I ditched the ruler (a very scary thing for a quilter!) and started slicing and dicing the fabric and putting it back together. I could not be happier with the result... it pays to be brave! It's a good reminder to tiptoe outside my comfort zone more often.

I backed it in a teal print from Joel Dewberry's Botanics collection, and quilted it with organic straight lines to complement the horizontal lines in the piecing. It's bound in Widescreen by Carolyn Friedlander, one of my very favourite neutrals right now. I'm binding another quilt in it at the moment, too, which will be ready for sharing in a few days.

A random encounter with long-forgotten fabrics has turned into a quilt that I am really digging, the process of which has inspired me to flex my improv muscles more often. Don't you think this quilt would be perfect for a modern, gender neutral nursery? I'll be listing it in my Etsy shop tomorrow.

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