Quilt as Desired? Oh Dear! | Inside Quilters Newsletter

I’m the person who made this quilt. So I get have to decide how to quilt it. “Quilt as desired.” Sometimes that phrase makes me a little nervous.


It’s Supersheep

I had a wonderful four days off for Thanksgiving. I had a huge chunk of time to spend at the sewing machine. I completed the top and the pieced back for a scrappy throw-size quilt, then I worked on this cute little baby quilt.

It’s Supersheep is a web bonus for the January/February 2017 issue of McCall’s Quilting. I love it. It’s just one big block enlarged from my Gone to Pieces quilt, which is patterned in that same issue of McCall’s Quilting. The issue is available now at your local quilt shop and on newsstands or at quiltandsewshop.com in hard copy or digital format.

I used fabric from Moda’s Darling Little Dickens collection to make my baby quilt. I had a single length of fabric for the back of the quilt, but at a recent fabric grab I got a bundle of fat eighths of the same collection. So I cut two 9” squares from 18 of the fat eighths and sewed them together in rows.

11 28 supersheepback Quilt as Desired? Oh Dear!

The Back of It’s Supersheep

As you can see, I got as far as layering, pin basting and the stitch-in-the-ditch quilting. Now I have to decide what to do for the rest of the quilting. Quilt as desired? I don’t have a clue what I desire.

I quilt my small quilts myself. The bed-size quilts, I send out to be quilted. It’s Supersheep, I’m planning to quilt myself.

Sometimes, as I’m making a quilt, I have an idea and I know by the time the quilt sandwich is assembled how I’m going to quilt it but that’s not always the case. Supersheep is one of those that I didn’t know what I was going to quilt as I pieced it.

There is a funny story about Supersheep. I named it because of the cute fabric you see here.

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The Sheep Fabric

I love those funny round sheep. That fabric was a possibility for the background fabric but when I auditioned it, the quilt looked “mushy”. There wasn’t enough contrast. The sheep fabric was too busy for a background.

I’d actually been afraid that would be the case so I had ordered plenty of the polka dot fabric as a second possibility for the background and that’s what I used.

I’d already named the quilt It’s Supersheep and handed the pattern off before I actually made it. I forgot that was what I named it. I literally didn’t think about it again until the magazine was already printed and the pattern was online. So here is a quilt named It’s Supersheep and there are NO sheep on the front of the quilt.

I brought my quilt to work today and asked my friends Tricia Patterson and Paula Stoddard for advice about the quilting. Because of the bears and bees and honey on some of the fabrics, Paula suggested loops and bees. I loved that idea. Paula drew one little bee to get me started.

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Paula’s Bee

Then when I told the story about the quilt name and the absence of sheep, Tricia suggested that I quilt sheep in the five big background squares. What a fun plan! I can hardly wait to go home and start stitching.

Hint: Because I’ve never tried to quilt bees combined with loops, I’ll practice a while before I start stitching. I’ll doodle with just plain paper and a pencil. I find that makes it much easier to quilt something. If I know how to draw it, I can quilt it. I won’t spend a long time doodling – maybe 15-20 minutes — but that much time spent doodling makes a big difference.

I have to tell you one last thing about the Darling Little Dickens fabrics. Look at the selvedges. The registration marks are these cute little rabbits. Isn’t that a fun addition?

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The Selvedges

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