Despite it being overdue, I do feel it is fitting that I finished it in March, when there is a Blue Moon this month! What exactly is a Blue Moon? It is when there are two full moons within one month. The moon was full in North America on March 1, in Europe on March 2, and the second full moon, or Blue Moon will be March 31.
One of the fabric collections I received in my Island Batik Ambassador box was Blue Moon. May I just say it is my absolute hands-down favourite of the collections? Here it is, well just the light blue yardage is missing, with the Foundations Bundle:
Here are the fabrics I pulled:
The design is based on one of my designs I submitted for #30quiltdesignschallenge2018 that I'm hosting on Instagram.
|You can see the evolving wavy-seamed rectangles for the water section|
February, especially the second half, was a blur. My Real Life stuff took over and put a huge damper on my Quilting Life: a trip to Nashville that was rescheduled due to flights being cancelled, a wedding dress found (and a fabulous 4-day trip may I add, in most excellent company), driving back home from Florida, and all the packing and organizing at both ends that entails. As soon as we got home, I got to work.
This is a section of the water that I gave a sneak peek of on Instagram. The original design was all HSts, but once I pulled fabrics, and realized most were of similar patterns and saturation, I knew I needed to further distinguish between the sky and the water sections. I thought of rectangles, more linear. Then, I thought what if instead of straight seams, I sewed them together with gentle curves? Eureka! And then I hit upon joining some of them in gently curving vertical seams as well! I was also cutting and sewing HSTs, of which there are 63. A few squares are solid, and there is a larger square, the equivalent of four HSTs, behind the moon. I used the same grey batik so that there wouldn't be any potential shadowing, but I needn't have worried.
Here it is on the improvised small design wall in my sewing loft. The large design wall in the guest room on the main floor is fully occupied with another project which shall be revealed on Wednesday!
|Please ignore the little peeking-through of my round robin mini-quilt in the one corner!|
I knew I needed to create the straight horizon line, to differentiate between the sky and the water. I tried to line up all the darkest batiks on the lowest row of the sky section. I pinned the moon in place over the grey large square and stepped back:
For the moon, I used Lara Buccella's Crafted Appliqué technique (no affiliation), amazing, as it provides a strong bond that is soft and pliable, and the edges do not fray. Keep this in mind when you see some close-ups of the quilting on the moon. (LOL, that makes me think one day there will be quilting on the moon 'cruises', like quilt cruises)
UPDATE: Okay I just barely finished linking this post up, go to check my gmail, and one of my Twitter notifications is THIS shared by Valori Wells:
Like HOW? .... Okay I know it's from 2013, but still, wee-ooh, wee-ooh, as my sister Linda likes to chant when strange things happen...
It always amazes me how much a quilt shrinks as you start sewing the blocks together... Here are the first three rows sewn.
It wasn't long before I had a flimsy.
|Notice the kinda/sorta Evening Star block the moon rests upon?|
It is so very satisfying to see something that came out of your head, then drawn on graph paper, and then made in fabric!
I layered it with an older batik backing, and Hobbs Thermore batting, which I am loving more and more for minis. It quilts like a dream, is nice and thin for minis, and retains its shape beautifully. There is some pretty dense quilting on this piece.
I was a little nervous about how to quilt the moon, so Google helped show me a ton of various moon images, and I started with this after seeing one actual photo where these lines are clear:
|Unbelievably FAB-YOO-LUSS grey moony batik!👏🌕|
Again, I decided to differentiate between the sky and the water with the quilting. For the sky, I did walking foot straight lines 1/4" on either side of each vertical seam, and then down the centre of each square, using Sulky Blendables 30 weight. Again, not a hitch, but I do use a Topstitch 90 needle. On the water section I did an free-motion water back-and-forth like ripples with the same Sulky Blendables thread.
For the centre of the moon, I used a Sulky variegated greys rayon, and then to create a glow effect around it, another Sulky metallic, this one in silver and dark grey. For the moon's reflection on the water I did super-dense back-and forth lines using the Sulky variegated grey, Polyneon by Madeira, 100% polyester in grey with a lovely sheen to it, and then Sulky metallic and blue Holoshimmer.
|Taken outside on the front step in the dusk for a blueish light!|
I sewed a hanging sleeve on the back so I can switch it out with my current snowman wallhanging lol. It is machine bound with the navy and the deep purple from the Batik Foundations. I had another epiphany on binding to help again distinguish between the sky and water: I bound the sky section with the purple and the water with the navy! First time I've pieced a binding to purposely land at a particular point of a quilt. It is bound by machine on the front and then ditch-stitched from the front to catch in the back, which was glued down with Elmer's School Glue (love the stuff).
Here's one last shot in natural light:
Pattern: original design
Size: Pre-quilting: 14.25X16.5"; Post-quilting: 14.25X16.25"
Fabric: Island Batik batiks
Batting: Hobbs Thermore 100% polyester
Quilted: on my Bernina
Threads: pieced with Gütermann cotton; quilted with Sulky Blendables 30 wt #733-4022, Sulky Metallic #142 (silver and dark grey and silver, light blue and light pink), Sulky Holoshimmer #145-6030, Connecting Threads Essential 50 wt #21000 100% cotton, Aurifil 50 wt #2745 100% cotton, Madeira Polyneon in Grey #1611
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