I'm so pleased to be able to share my finished Blackberry Winter Blossom quilt with you. Sometimes I think the quilts with absolutely no purpose other than playing with colour and design are the most fun to make, and this quilt definitely fits into that category!
Most of the fabrics in this quilt come from this stack I put together on a dark and rainy winter's day when I was thinking of spring. This is essentially a one block quilt, which uses my Blackberry Winter Blossom block on a large scale.
The piecing of this quilt is really simple so I had a lot of fun with the quilting. The central "flower" section is quilted with a quite dense flower petal design - it makes for really great texture and is easy to do.
Still free motion quilting, I quilted in the ditch (mostly) around the flower shape, and then quilted a row of small circles next to that line (I would normally call them pebbles but in this context I think they're more like beads). Then I quilted another straight (ish) line on the outside to give the flower a bit of an outline.
The trickiest part of the quilting for me was the blue and green background and border sections. I really wanted quilting that looked like wind because it's super windy here during spring. I quilted swirls surrounded by kind of swirly lines, which ended up looking a bit more like water than wind, but I still like the effect. This quilting required a lot of concentration and I lost control a few times - it's something I'd like to practice more. I find designs which are larger than the space between my hands when quilting hard, because I can't always see where I am going. It's hard to explain but I think it's why FMQ done on a domestic machine will always be denser than FMQ done on a long-arm - your immediate area of work will always be smaller on a domestic machine.
I think the swirly water/wind quilting shows up better on the back of the quilt where there is a bit more solid fabric space. I think that the next time I FMQ a quilt this intensely, I'll make sure it includes plenty of solid fabrics so that my hard work is actually visible!
All the quilting on this quilt was done with Aurifil 50 weight thread in colour 2021. I have to say, I am now a complete Aurifil convert, especially for FMQ. The 50 weight is so fine that it leaves the quilt less stiff, even with dense quilting, and the large spool seems to last forever (I managed to FMQ three baby quilts with a single 1300 metre spool, using it in the bobbin as well). This cream colour blended in really well with all the fabrics despite the wide range of values in the quilt.
This is the back - I really adore the green and pink Heather Bailey print. The width of the quilt meant I would inevitably have to piece the back so I decided to use a bit of this gorgeous Anna Maria Horner orange peel print in a fun way, and I think it adds a nice touch.
I am especially pleased with the binding on this quilt. This hot pink and white stripe print is from Spotlight and is part of a new range they have which features stripes, spots and chevron prints in a variety of fun and modern colours. I know Spotlight has had something of a bad rep amongst quilters for its fabric quality, and while I think they still have work to do (I've experienced print run errors on a number of occasions), I've been impressed at the increasing range and quality of the quilting fabrics Spotlight stocks. They quite often have cool and quirky Japanese prints, Sarah Fielke's collections are lovely and they are even branching out into linen blend quilting fabrics.
Pattern: my Blackberry Winter Blossom block, scaled up
Finished Size: approx 42" by 42"
Backing: Heather Bailey print and Anna Maria Horner print
Binding: pink and white stripe from Spotlight
Pieced and quilted by: me
Linking up with finish it up friday at crazy mom quilts. I'm also linking up with Gemma's I Quilt linky part for the first time.
This quilt is the second of my fourth quarter finishes. I'll be linking up with Leanne at she can quilt as part of the 2013 Finish Along in due course.