Tuesday, January 8, 2013

First finish of 2013

My first finish of the year....thought I'd finish this a week ago (as in last year!), but didn't quite get it done.

This is 'Rose of Hope'. See below for proof the binding is done. There was sunshine on the day I was at this point in the process and there hasn't been since, so this is the 'full' photo that gives great detail on the quilting. The binding is out of the same outer most border fabric. I stitched it on the front by machine, and folded over to the back and stitched down by hand ...I know (not my norm)...but felt this one warranted the hand work.

Back in 2009 do you remember the Rose of Sharon EQ Block Design Contest? The original contest encouraged us to think outside the box in using a fixed set of shapes in a fixed set of sizes. Most blocks submitted were of more typical rose of sharon styled blocks. This bird one was definitely outside the box! I realize that the story of Noah talks about a bird and an olive branch, but this image still makes me think of that story. I chose to use a rainbow effect in the borders, because a rainbow was seen in that story to remind us of God's promise. The first and third border are mitered and have darker sides to try and present an illusion of perspective looking through a thick wall and out through a window where the bird is seen flying by. Kind of like the walls of the ark.

There are two layers of batting, cotton on the bottom and wool on top to provide loft in unquilted areas.

The applique is stitched around, some are filled in more densely than others. The 'cloud' quilting is inspired from a fill sample by Gina Perkes in her newish book. The brown border with scrollwork I wanted to have a little pizzazz so incorporated the designs, echoed them once about 1/8" away and then did a woodgrain background fill around them. I hoped it would give the effect of carved wood. A woodgrain fill in the medium brown and light brown border. I tried, but could have been more intentional to stitch the 'further' away sides tighter and the 'nearer' sides less dense to help in the illusion of the perspective. They are only subtly different and could have had more exaggeration. The very outer border was sort of an experiment. A squiggly frame, echoed, and pebbles all around to fill in. The pieced rainbow borders are only ditched on the inner and outer edges (not at each pieced seam). They really pop up because of the wool batting and no quilting on them.

I blocked it by pinning it onto insulation board and then steaming it. The center block was done long before I became so aware of batik bleeding fabric and I think the lower right leaves would bleed if they got wet given my experience on a quilt recently that I am pretty sure used the same fabric. I think it was a hand-dye that I acquired sometime in the past and was just sitting in my stash. It is now laying fairly flat, so am happy with it to just be this way and just be a wallhanging. It finished at about 38" x 38".

The center block, blown up to 15" is originally one of my design entries to the Rose of Sharon EQ7 Block Design contest back in 2009. It was one selected to be included in Nine Patch Media's DVD. (Their website seems to be going through some construction at the time of posting or you'd see a link here).

My basket block was included in the book that they published as well.

The wallhanging I put together for that was auctioned off at our local festival and all proceeds went to the http://www.alzquilts.org/
Progress on the new studio is continuing. During the Christmas week, my husband and I created a scale model in gingerbread. Andies mints are the bricks, red hots and lips are on the door, a gingerbread tree and extra branches using guacmole chips. The other three trees are using tootsie rolls for trunks and guacmole chips for branches. The 'green' grass is made from sour green apple 'belts'. The shingles used special cuts from mocha covered waffle textured wafers. The same wafers were used (prior to being cut in thirds) for the walkway. The rock formation is made from Costco special almond toffee. Snow was made using a frosting made with meringue (I found it by looking up "frosting used as cement"). A fun time!


Happy New Year!


  1. Oh, I *love* this wall hanging! Great quilting job, Marlene. Sure love the basket quilting and angled edges, too.

  2. Beautiful! Love it! The colors are wonderful, the perspective is wonderful. The narrow borders really 'make' it for me, and the quilting, of course.

  3. Very nice! Love the GB house too!

  4. Both quilts are wonderful!! I love all the meaning behind the rose of sharon. The gingerbread studio is out of this world! Awesome.
    Have a great day.
    Always, Queenie

  5. I love this finish. Woo hoo, it is beautiful. Fantastic quilting too. And that little bird is so sweet. Very creative.


  6. That is adorable....I love the quilting on this.

  7. Your quilting is just beautiful on the Rose of hope!!