Finished Top

2 06 2009

 I finished another top from my UFO list this morning.  This quilt was made from the pattern Simple gifts from Country Sampler.  I started this quilt in 2006 at a block party hosted by Ruth’s Stitchery.  About half way through the year I dropped out of the block party due to other commitments.  I’ve been plugging away on it ever since.

I will admit I wouldn’t have purchased the pattern based on the picture.  The sample quilt is done in “Thimbleberry” type colors and I’m just not a fan.  I quilted the shop sample and was actually drawn to the quilt because of the setting triangles.  After purchasing the pattern I drafted the whole thing in Electric Quilt to try different color combinations.  These are what I considered — they weren’t intended to be a map for the quilt.  Rather the point was to get a feel for various color ways.





My favorite was the third one, but I chose to use the pastel version for a couple of reasons.  Guy isn’t wild about quilts with black backgrounds and I hope to use this quilt on our bed.  Also that color variation wasn’t really a stretch requiring me to move outside my comfort zone.  I opted for the pastel version.  I found I didn’t have many pastels in my stash, which meant I needed several shopping trips.  In fact when I went on the Western Washington Shop Hop that year pastels were my goal.  I added five blocks to the quilt to make it wider.  This is the finished top.


I think some of my pastels were getting a little dark, but they are harder to find than one might imagine.

I do have a word of caution for anyone using this pattern.  The directions for the border say to cut strips of fabric and stitch them into strip sets.  Which means you are dealing with just one border piece when it is time to miter the corners.  That’s great, but the pattern doesn’t say anything about making sure each of your strips is the same length before stitching them together.  I might have followed the directions as written if I hadn’t quilted the shop sample.  The person who pieced it followed the directions and had extremely wavy borders.  Wavy borders are the bane of a machine quilters existence and I avoid them at all costs on my own quilts.  So my advice is go ahead and cut those strip sets, but before stitching them together measure and cut each strip to the same length.  Then sew them together and be sure they fit exactly.

I plan to quilt this top with a freehand all over design, so it is possible it will be finished before the end of the summer. 

  Just one last funny observation to leave you with.  For some reason when making a masculine quilt most people lean toward dark muted colors.  My husband has commented several times that this is the prettiest quilt I’ve ever made (sorry I don’t agree with that opinion) and how much he likes the colors.  Just goes to show you can’t put people in a box based on preconceived notions.