Monday, January 27, 2014

Radiant Orchid Colour Study - Ta Da! (and some exciting news)

Radiant Orchid Colour Study

This quilt is called Radiant Orchid Colour Study. The design was inspired by the work of Josef Albers. Radiant Orchid is the Pantone Colour of the Year for 2014 and I think that the outside right block is probably the closest to it. She is about 53" square after washing and is made from various Kona purples and Kona Snow.

2014 Pantone Quilt Challenge 
I made this quilt for the quilt challenge that my friends Anne and Adrianne are hosting. You have plenty of time to join in, the link for finished projects opens on March 14.

If you visit often, you know that I am a last minute finisher and will wonder why on earth I imagined, planned, cut, pieced, quilted, bound and washed this quilt over this last weekend - yes it was two days start to finish. Well, on Saturday afternoon I was booked to spend 3 hours trying out a long arm machine at Sparrow Studioz and needed a practice piece.

Radiant Orchid Colour Study - before washing

I woke up early on Saturday and this idea popped into my head as giving me a lot of room to try different quilting designs and also to cover off the purple challenge all in one. Since I am not much of a fan of purple, it did not worry me that my quilting might be far below regular standards, at least it would be done.

Radiant Orchid Colour Study - before washing

I chose a purple thread that looked radiant orchid to me. It was a shiny polyester thread, which runs very smoothly through the long arm and stands out nicely on the different parts of the quilt. I played with a bunch of quilting patterns, and did not use a ruler (except to draw an X in the top right middle square to work around) or a pantograph, I just held the handles and doodled.


The two photos above and below were taken before I washed her. You can see that it is not hard to do matchstick quilting (top right and lower left centre squares) and also a freehand 1/4" grid which just means that you follow the outside of the hopping foot. My new favourite might just be that one in the top right, it is so easy and fast to make that curvy woven look and it looks so good in a nice big colour space like this.

I also tried various all over designs like a regular curvy and also square stipple, both of which go incredibly fast. You can see that I need tons of practice on the clamshells and boxes that are on the left. I expect that after a year or 10 of developing some skill on the long arm that this quilt will make me cringe but today I totally love it.

Radiant Orchid Colour Study - before washing

Despite the fact that my ability to control the machine and to make nice patterns is pitiful, I loved the machine. So much so that I have paid the deposit and will complete all the details early this week. Once that is done, in a week or so a flatbed truck will deliver a shining new Millenium APQS long arm quilting machine and 10 foot table to my door, just in time for my birthday.

Radiant Orchid Colour Study - Back

I backed her with this crazy IKEA print which makes me laugh. I had enough of it prewashed and handy, and it's extra wide so no piecing was required, so it was an obvious choice. And the binding is more Kona Snow and was attached by machine. The overall look of this quilt, back, front and binding is "industrial" as opposed to refined, nicely crafted or even middling perfect. So I am going with industrial modern - as if I did it on purpose.

Radiant Orchid Colour Study

I have long wondered how quilts made with intricate long arm quilting looked after the first wash. The photo above is after a wash and dry. It became soft and cuddly with a nice drape. The tight designs remained well defined but their texture increased and the larger stipple, loops, swirls and daisy loops softened and mellowed nicely.

Radiant Orchid Colour Study

There she is after the wash in lighting that emphasizes the quilting (which happened by accident, not through any clever technical expertise of mine). There are swirls in the top border, a large stipple on the left, loopy loops on the right and a daisy loop at the bottom. Mostly you see nice crinkly goodness until you get closer.

Radiant Orchid Colour Study

And this my best outdoor shot. The purples are pretty true in this photo. I love the colour study design too, and I understand now why Mr. Albers spent so much time making his art. The interactions between the different purples in the calm minimal design is really so pleasing, I might have to write this up as a pattern too.

I hope you are up for details of this long arm adventure, as I am keen to start it and to share it all with you here. For now, I am off to work, this week is back to normal so I hope to post more often here again too.

 

And I remembered that I can link up with my friend Aylin's Monday Maker group - I am excited to see who else is linked there. I might link to the Tuesday links too, let's see how much time I have tomorrow.

Best,

Leanne

58 comments:

  1. Oooh, lucky you to be getting a long arm! You did a fabulous job for your first go, Leanne -- wow! Great colour study too!

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  2. Very exciting news about the long arm purchase! It sounds like you wikk be hacing tons of creative fun with the machine.

    tthe quilting on your radiant orchid is really interesting. I love how the lower left inside square looks like a woodgrain with the matchstick quilting.

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  3. Congrats on your b'day present - what a landmark gift! Perfect color study for the challenge and I think "Industrial Modern" might just catch on.

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  4. Really cool!! Enjoy your new LA machine when it arrives!

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  5. I'm so excited for you! This looks great, you are a natural! I have some of that Ikea print somewhere too and haven't a clue what I'm going to use it for!

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  6. What a fabulous quilt - I love the simplicity of the design but the quilting is amazing!! Have fun with your new toy when it arrives! R x

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  7. How brilliant! For a first effort this is pretty amazing. Cannot imagine how good you will be when you've had proper time to practice! Have fun exploring and learning and I look forward to reading your journey! Will it help your matchstick quilting to be easier of your back and shoulders? Hope so!

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  8. wow, what a fantastic design. I love how perfectly this quilt shows off all the wonderful quilting you did. and how totally wonderful about your new long arm machine. Congrats!!! So looking forward to seeing all the amazing work you do with it.

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  9. Beautiful and a perfect 'practice' piece though who would have known! It is lovely and I am eager to hear more about this new journey of yours. Congrats! Happy for you and your new 'toy!'

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  10. Nice one and what an exciting news!

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  11. Now that's a birthday present! Enjoy. The quilt is amazing, and your 'pitiful' quilting looks pretty good to me.

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  12. I can't believe you are finished the Radiant Orchid quilt already! I thought I was going well having chosen the fabrics in 4 days, and completed the cutting over 2 days! Well done, your quilt looks great.

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  13. Love it! You did a beautiful quilting job, too :) Congrats on the longarm!!

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  14. Well that's a pretty fantastic birthday present, you luck gal!
    And i love your radiant orchid quilt, can't wait to see more long arm amazingness from you!

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  15. This is so beautiful! I really love the many different quilting styles. I'm not sure if I would have thought of that. Yes, yes...washing quilts makes them so cuddly. I love the crinkles!

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  16. a great quilt with awesome FMQ, and how exciting that you are getting a long arm!!!

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  17. fabulous quilt Leanne - what fun trying out a longarm and then purchasing one !! yippee can't wait for the adventure to begin :)

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  18. Everything about this post is FABULOUS! Congrats!

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  19. Brilliant, love the finished quilt and it sounds like you had loads of fun quilting it- can't wait to hear about your new machine!

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  20. Yay!!! I can't wait to observe your long-arm experiences! You did a fabulous job with this one. I'm super impressed!

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  21. Beautiful, Enjoy your new machine.

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  22. How fabulous to be getting a long arm! I love purples

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  23. Congrats on the birthday present. Your quilting looks amazing for being brand new at this. It's going to be fun to watch your quilting evolve with a new tool.

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  24. Oh how wonderful! I love collecting friends with long arms!! I just know you will be in your element! Enjoy your new toy! Jxo

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  25. It turned out great, what a nice selection of patterns you picked out. I especially like the bottom lavender colored one in the center on the left.....the horizontal lines look very cool!

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  26. That sounds like the embarking on a grand adventure! Enjoy!

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  27. I love purple and I love your piece too! Have fun with your wonderful gift...

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  28. So fun! I totally knew you'd succumb too ;o) And for May?

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  29. Well planned or not, you hit a home run! Happy birthday early!! Enjoy your new machine.

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  30. Congrats on the new long-arm, I look forward to hearing more! The quilting on the radiant orchid quilt turned out absolutely great!

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  31. This is fantastic! I love all the different quilting textures you added.

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  32. Cool quilt! I am waiting for the block-rockit machine to be available and then am planning on getting my longarm (midarm really) life started with it. Can't wait to hear more about your quilting adventures!

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  33. It's so beautiful, Leanne!! I absolutely love all the different long-arming you did on it! Also I am so excited for you that you're getting a long arm!!! I know you will be an expert in no time!

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  34. Oh my, Leanne, I am so jelous! I have Never Seen a langarmig in real Life and you had the Chance to quilt with it. Your little quilt is gorgeous. I have to try to use more solids ;-)

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  35. Your quilt looks amazing - love all of the different quilting styles you did too! How exciting to be getting your own long arm machine:)

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  36. Congratulations on your birthday and your longarm! Happy times! Looking forward to seeing all your future masterpieces :-)

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  37. I'm so excited for You!!!! The quilt looks wonderful and have fun playing with your new machine!!!

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  38. You are really going to fly with a long arm - exciting. Your quilt is a great example of what can be done. Di x

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  39. The quilt is brilliant and the new purchase so exciting. Which child is being made homeless so you have somewhere to put it?

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  40. An absolute stunner, Leanne. The quilt is gorgeous and your quilting amazing. You did a brilliant job. I think the quilting keeps your eye interested - you could easily glance over this quilt as just a purple square, but the interesting quilting design makes you look longer. Great idea.
    I have the same IKEA fabric. It makes me smile too :)

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  41. It's beautiful and I do love the way the very still and peaceful front is paired with the mad back! Look forward to see where your long arm takes you.

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  42. This is beautiful! Congrats and good luck with the new machine!

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  43. Congratulations on soon becoming a longarmer! Radiant Orchid is a beauty in her simplicity and I really love all the different quilting patterns.

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  44. What a cool quilt, I love your quilting, especially the border. I may use that idea for my next one!

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  45. Happy Birthday to you!! What a great gift! Every quilter's dream! Love your take on the Radiant Orchid challenge, and the quilting turned out great. I can just imagine how inspired your quilting will become when your new machine is put into action.

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  46. Love every thing about this, especially how the back is sort of whimsical in your industrial modern masterpiece ;)

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  47. Happy Birthday to you! Nicely done.
    Do you know Andrea at Urban Quiltworks? That's the same machine she bought.

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  48. I love that quilt and suspect you may be a natural at this LA-ing lark ;o) It's a fabulous present - happy birthday!

    P.S. I can't wait to see your LA-ing skills develop!

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  49. What a grand Happy Birthday gift! And here's another: you don't have to reply to this comment. I just wanted to wish you happy, happy and a big congrats on your new quilting machine. I imagine you'll have a grand time with it!

    Elizabeth

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  50. I am positively green right now Leanne! What a fantastic birthday present - I would LOVE to hear all about your longarm journey. I love the doodling you have done on your radiant orchid quilt, it looks like it was lots of fun to do.

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  51. Love it! The quilting is so much fun. And I can't wait to hear all about your journey to your Millie.

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  52. Love it! Radiant Orchid is really growning on me! Great way to try new quilting techniques!

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  53. I really love this Leanne. The quilting is absolutely gorgeous and the design so simple and refreshing. You are braver than I when it comes to quilting. I need to find my FMQ mojo.

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  54. What a great design to showcase various quilting patterns. I also appreciated the before and after washing shots.

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  55. Cool quilt! The quilting is great too! Nice work!!

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