Sunday, 18 November 2012

Porthole Petal Quilt

Years ago when I started writing this blog I would share the gestation of every quilt, with sneak peeks and progress reports until the day I could say 'it's finished!'
But here's a quilt I have been working on, intermittently, since the summer and I realise I haven't mentioned it here once! I think this is due to too many projects and too little time these days.

I loved learning how to make portholes at Lu Summer's class at FQ London 2012 Retreat, and made this cot quilt pretty much as soon as I got back. But I wanted to do something more grown up with this technique and also wanted to show off all the lovely Flea Market Fancy that I had, finally, taken delivery of at the shop.
So I chose some nice pastelly Kona and added some Melody Ross Vintage Ladies and some polka dots, and started portholing some petal shapes. Here's a big pile of 'holes' ready to be filled.
This is quite a restrained palette for me, and I wasn't sure if is was really doing it for me. However, I showed it to my Scottish blogging buddies when we had our Sunday Sewing Day in July, and they were all quite encouraging, so I kept on making the 8 inch blocks during my summer holidays.
I made 36 and was about to sew them together but other projects and work must have got in the way so I only got round to it a couple of weeks ago.
When I found I only had 34!
I went back to my stash to make another 2 and somehow that orange colour leapt off the shelves and demanded to be included (along with a couple of new Blend fabrics that had arrived that week). I am really pleased it did as I think it was the 'oomph' that was missing.
I used another Blend fabric by Maude Asbury (from her Kitchy Kitch line) fot the back, and machine appliqued some of the left over cut-out petals on to it.
That orange demanded, again, to be part of the border (it's a very forthright colour). I just love it, even it's name is great - School Bus!
And then I really went for it with the machine quilting (for me).
My Pfaff has made machine quilting a total joy! I never would have thought the FMQing could be fun, but it actually is with my beautiful new machine (I also never knew I could have such feelings for an electrical appliance!).
I used the walking foot to go round the petals and fill in the cross sections. Then I FMQed the middle of the petals, (with an actual pattern!)
 Look at that fancy stitching on the border! So easy and quick!
It took me most of this week to finish sewing the binding (in snatched moments, even during one of my evening classes!). And finally I have a day off today and the sun is shining (a bit).
I usually always have a person or need in mind for every quilt, but really I made this one to show off the fabric in the shop (so we can sell more of it) and to explore the technique further. I may give it away at some stage, but for now I think it will go on display in the craft room. Luckily FMF has a long run and we have just ordered more (and widened the range), so the quilt isn't out of date yet!
Now it's washed and dried it looks very snuggly, I think the extra layers in the middle of each block add to this.
I have to say, the colour palette is not exactly seasonal! This is what comes of starting a quilt in the summer and taking so long to finish it. Still I hate to have too many half finished projects so this is another one ticked off the list and that makes me very happy :)
In case anyone is interested (I always forget about these quilt stats) it measure 142cm / 56inches square.
I may be quiet for the next couple of weeks as I am preparing for the Country Living Fair in Glasgow which starts next Thursday. Not only am I having a stand but I'm also giving a demo everyday (Felt Robin), just to pile on a bit more pressure!
If anyone reading this makes it to the SECC, please come and say hello, and if you get a place on one of the demos - no heckling please!!

30 comments:

  1. Love it! That orange is perfect with all the other colours. I'm going to come and have a proper look at it when I pop into your shop next month :-)

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  2. This is a totally stunning quilt, Jo! Love it so much.

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  3. Gorgeous Jo, a great take on Lu's portholes!

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  4. It looks great, fab way to use the portholes! Sorry I can't see you at the fair though, I'm going to be at the Brit Bee Christmas party at Susan's...

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  5. Love it Jo, well done and you're right that orange really adds to it - well done.

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  6. It's wonderful, I love the orange - good call!

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  7. Stunning work.....but then.....all your work is!

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  8. At first I thought the original palate was kind of subdued, then I thought the two orange pieces looked a little jarring, but OH MY the whole picture is stunning. I absolutely love it, and the orange brings out the yellow brighter, and the tiny bits of orange in the prints I had not even noticed! Absolutely gorgeous :)
    xoxo melzie

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  9. It is beautiful! I love this shape for the portholes, and I love how the colours came together for you. Oh, and your quilting is lovely!

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  10. Fantastic, I love it and so does my husband who just happened to be walking by as I was admiring it! :D

    Tabath at BendingPins.com

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  11. It is a very cheerful and pretty quilt and cheers up a chilly autumn day.

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  12. All those lovely curves, it's fantastic Jo

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  13. I agree with melzie... the orange does bring out the yellow! It a gorgeous quilt, not out of date or out of season either!!!! It's summer here and would make a great picnic quilt!

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  14. This quilt looks like a lot of fun. The fabrics and colors are fresh and beautiful.

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  15. I agree, the orange really changed the flavour! It's a lovely quilt in ever way, great colours, gorgeous pattern, beautiful quilting, stunning borders, interesting back and pretty binding.

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  16. It is completely beautiful and will NEVER go out of date!

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  17. Gorgeous quilt - the orange is perfect with the other fabrics!

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  18. Love the orange border, and you have used some of my favourite fabrics for the petals.

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  19. Love the quilt. Also the Orange is Great!!

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  20. Beautiful work and a great showcase for your lovely fabrics. I am intrigued by the porthole method and wonder if you will be having a class on this any time in the future.

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  21. The orange is genius, it really does make the quilt. Juliex

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  22. It's really beautiful! I'd love to learn how to do the portholes. Janita

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  23. What a beautiful quilt!!! So bright and lively!! :)

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  24. brilliant jo - great change up re the portholes - and perfick to send to oz for our summer!!

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  25. Like a robin jubbly! No comments for that post so posting here.

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  26. Hi Jo, hope you and yours have had a wonderful Christmas. Just discovered this wonderful quilt in flickr! Love it! I was at Lucie's porthole class too - wasn't it fab! Must get more portholes onto my to-do list! Jxo

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  27. Just found this today! Love your quilt. Is "portholing" hard to do? I've never heard of it but then again I'm in South Carolina, USA.
    Beautiful!

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