Wednesday, July 18, 2012

A Touch of Blue

A Touch of Blue

That is A Touch of Blue. She is a 20" square pillow / cushion cover I made for A Modern Quilted Pillow Swap. The fabrics are Kona white and a selection of Kona blues and aquas. I quilted it densely with a slightly variegated white/golden Valdani 40 weight thread. I marked the quilting lines about every 3" with a hera marker and purposely made the distances between the quilted lines random but  reasonably straightish.

I wanted the bumpy effect from washing and I wanted to get the shrinking caused by such dense quilting and then washing and drying taken care of, so when the pieces were done, I measured them to be large - I can't recall exactly but I think I gave an extra 1.5 to 2" and trimmed. Then I zig zag stitched all around and threw them in the washer and dryer. Good thing because it shrunk to almost exactly the size I needed. Then I trimmed again, and added all the bindings.

A Touch of Blue - back

The back has an envelope type fold over closure (I bet there is a technical term for this). I machine stitched the scrappy binding in place, practicing Marianne from The Quilting Edge's technique. I managed to get all the corners reasonably well but you can see I missed a spot on the left side. I am repairing that this morning before I ship it off.

A Touch of Blue

Although in my head the first picture is "right side" up, I think this one works in any orientation. I really love playing with these very geometric improv blocks with plenty of negative space, but I still need more practice as it is a struggle for me to stop and embrace the view that less is more.

This swap involved making the pillow in silence and secret, and then sending a photo to the administrator who posted them to the group. I actually found this made deciding on what to make really hard as there was no flickr or blog encouragement. Once I finally stopped trying to decide what people might like and just made what made me happy, the pillow went quickly - although I was the last to finish.

Once the pillows are done, each person in the group ranks the pillows in order of the ones they want to receive - so you are not voting for the best one, rather you are voting for  the one you want for you, in ranked order. It was very hard to rank them as all the pillows were excellent. The pillows are distributed on the basis of that one with the most votes gets her first choice, the one with the second most votes gets her first choice unless already taken, then the next choice, and so on. The each of us receive the address of the person to ship to and it is a secret as to which one you will get until it actually arrives.

Well, to my surprise and honour, my pillow got the most votes! It is off today, once I stitch that bit of binding down. Maybe I should make one for me too, because I really did make exactly what I liked.

I swam in the one big ocean yesterday - well, some call it the Pacific Ocean, some call it the Salish Sea but I learned from David Suzuki that it was one big ocean and I believe him - and it was wonderful. I hope you are enjoying your week too.

Best,

Leanne

44 comments:

MariQuilts said...

Love the cushion....such lovely colours. That swim in the ocean sounds heavenly.

Cindy said...

Oh wow it's gorgeous! I love the improv blocks in blue and the binding is perfect. Great make!

Archie the wonder dog said...

A perfect cushion! I love everything you make!

Carla said...

How lovely!

Lucy @ Charm About You said...

Beautiful Leanne! I love the quilting as well!
I've tried so many tips for machine quilting binding but it never works for me, I'll give this one a go though. Even pressing the binding doesn't seem to work for me :(

Shevvy said...

Wonderful. It sounds like a really difficult way to do a swap but you came up trumps!

Rachel said...

Ooh, Leanne, it's gorgeous!!!
R x

Flying Blind... said...

I am not at all surprised that this pillow got top votes - lucky recipient - it's beautiful. As for going in the sea - I am insanely jealous of that too!

memmens said...

Yes go and make one for yourself it is gorgeous, or even make a full size quilt in it - I love it, well done

M-R said...

Love it!

Judith said...

Such a beautiful pillow. Go and make one for yourself.

Sheila said...

Sounds like a very unusual swap - your cushion deserves top ranking. You are fast developing a wonderful style.

Heather D. said...

Lovely, and I love that you made it crinkly.

Svetlana said...

So, so gorgeous!!!

nydia@add-crafter.com said...

Leanne this is fantastic! I LOVE your dense quilting!!!!

simplesew said...

beautiful..

Catherine said...

Its a fabulous pillow Leanne and deserves to have got the most votes. Never heard of a swap like that one before!
very jealous of you being in the ocean: I am hoping to get to Devon this summer, but it doesn't sound the same!!

susan said...

You have seriously blown me away once again. Love it!!

Sarah @ FairyFace Designs said...

Ooh, I just love this Leanne, its so completely fab! I love all the negative space and the dense quilting. Beautiful job.

Patchwork and Play said...

Great pillow Leanne. Not sure how you'll give it way! Look forward to seeing the one you receive!

Marg said...

Beautiful, love the colours and the quilting.

Sarah said...

Tis a fabulous cushion, really lovely. Not even remotely surprised it was so popular!!

Sarah said...

Oh Leanne! YOur swap partner will be dancing in her jammies that this is coming her way! Interesting swap concept.

Marjorie's Busy Corner said...

wish I was your partner...lol. It is quite beautiful Leanne. and the quilting is great!!

elle said...

Gorgeous is definitely the word!

Shocking Hocking said...

wow

West Michigan Quilter said...

I love your pillow. The various blues are perfect, the modern feel is great, and I love the way you have quilted it. Great job!

Katy Cameron said...

Oh,I'd have voted for this too! Love all the improvvy touches and that dense quilting

Melissa said...

This is lovely. I'd have wanted it too.

Ann Michelle said...

Ah... your pillow reminds me of sailing on the ocean with white clouds above. I saw your pillow on Flickr last night and loved it! Good job!

Valerie said...

Leanne, this turned put so great! So fresh and fun...

Heidi Staples said...

You must be so pleased, Leanne. It's beautiful!

OPQuilt said...

Yeah, you should get a ton of comments on this one because it's a winner. And not just from your group's estimation.

I agree that the negative space is luscious against those blue/greens, and the binding (brilliance, again) really makes it snap.

Your group sounds complicated, but I can hardly wait to see what you got in return!

Elizabeth E.
opquilt.com

Your Creative Friends at the Calico House said...

Love the colors and the quilting , very inspiring.

Jo @ a life in lists said...

Wow, I just love the dense quilting. Shoving it in the wash really was the perfect finish for it. Lucky recipient!

Debbie said...

Congrats on getting the most votes! That's awesome! I just love this and appreciated hearing about you washing it before binding to get the look you wanted. Really nice, Leanne!

Collette said...

beautiful cover love it and the blues x

Run Quilt Knit Write said...

I think i would have voted for it too Leanne!

Run Quilt Knit Write said...

I think i would have voted for it too Leanne!

Scrap,Quilt, Preach said...

You did a fantastic job. So much so I want to pin it to my inspiration wall so I can look at it often!

Holly said...

Love the pillow, Leanne! It can be hard to leave so much negative space, but the effect is stunning. A swim in the ocean sounds great, are you out here in BC?

Jess said...

I'm not surprised it got the most votes - it is truly stunning.

diane said...

what a fun swap, and it is no surprise to me that your received the most votes. It is fantastic. I want it too!

Kati said...

This is such a fun pillow! I'd have a very hard time letting it go. I do wish it was coming to me though! Everything about the design is perfect. I'm always amazed at what you create! Thanks for linking up to my hallway post this month!