Our cover quilt for the July/August 2017 issue of Quilty magazine, called Some Say She’s a Dreamer, was also our Giving Quilt featured on Easy Quilts Fall 2017. The fabric—the Dreamer Collection by Carrie Bloomston for Windham Fabrics—has a charitable donation tied to it, with a portion of the proceeds from the bee print going to the Xerces Society for Pollinator Conservation.
The quilt itself was designed by Angie Milligan, and made with the help of her sister-in-law and mother.
Angie was attracted to feather print in the bright coral. (“Geese would look a LOT better with feathers like that,” she says, laughing.) The feather fabric has a hand-done, collage-y appeal to it.
“I liked that the feathers weren’t in a line, weren’t perfectly symmetrical,” she says. In fact, the imperfect, hand-done look is ideal for a quilt design like this.
About the Design
Angie designed the quilt with long strips that finished 3 inches wide, just enough to capture a few complete feathers, as well as preserving the vertical repeat of the print. The hand-made asymmetry actually helps camouflage piecing imperfections.
“With longer strips, it’s harder to keep them all perfectly straight,” she says. And—while those long strips are simple to sew—if they’re not perfectly straight, you’ll notice.
In addition to choosing a fabric that can hide that (like Bloomston’s Dreamer collection), there are a few other tricks to help a quilter out, like adding in patchwork “pauses,” or choosing the right quilting design—both of which Angie did.
“It was fun to break up the lines with the Flying Geese units, so you don’t have that full length.” Then she grins. “Flying Geese. Feathers. Get it?”
Breaking up those hard lines is also why Angie and her mother, Lisa Beeson, picked the all-over feather quilting. (Feathers. Get it?) The vertical quilting ties in nicely with the patchwork design, of course, but its back-and-forth waving flow also distracts the eye from any non-perfect piecing.
Matching fabric prints to quilt pattern, and then quilting design to the pieced top—a lot goes into making a good quilt. Which makes it so much fun.
To read an interview with fabric designer Carrie Bloomston, and learn about the inspiration, the creativity, and the cause behind the Dreamer collection, click here, or pick up a copy of Easy Quilts Fall 2017.