Tuesday, December 16, 2014

I Love It When A Plan Comes Together

When I first saw Lee's {Freshly Pieced} post about her Fair Isle Quilt pattern I knew I wanted to make it. I have a hard time choosing colors for a quilt but this time I immediately thought of using a black background and making the reindeer look like Rudolph. I used Lee's photo and loaded it into PhotoShop Elements and then did a rough draft and changed the colors using the color picker tool.
The finished quilt makes me so happy. The colors seem to glow with that black background. It turned out exactly like I wanted it to look, even though the making of the quilt gave me a few headaches.
fair isle quilt

I really struggle with getting a perfect 1/4" seam. I have used every trick in the book and still I ended up with uneven sized blocks and reindeer that look like they have arthritic knees.
Once the blocks were all sewn together and sashed, my quilt was not perfectly square but the quilting helped to make it look more symmetrical. I could have quilted it myself, because in the end I just had my long arm quilter use wavy lines spaced 1" apart. I also wanted to try wool batting and I am sold on it. It is so warm but yet light weight and gives a lovely, squishy, cozy feeling to the quilt. I have been sleeping with it every night since I finished it last week.

The backing fabric is a perfect compliment and the black 1/2" binding keeps your eye on the beautiful colors and doesn't distract from Lee's design.
basic grey christmas fabric

This quilt needed a special label.Come back tomorrow and I'll tell you all about the label I made for this quilt.
Chalkboard Christmas Snowflakes Multi

The best part of finishing a Christmas quilt at Christmas time is being able to get some photos by the tree.
fair isle quilt

fair isle quilt
Rudolph and Santa feel nice and cozy with the quilt, too.
This last photo was made using several photo editing apps on the iPhone 6.
fair isle quilt

Quilt Stats:

Name: Midnight Christmas
Fabrics used: Michael Miller Cotton Couture Solids in Black, Cranberry, Lipstick, Cappuccino and Turf
Batting: Hobb's  Heirloom Washable Wool
Backing: Chalkboard Christmas Snowflakes Multi by Basic Grey
Thread: Pieced with Aurifil Black #2692
Quilting: by Susie Peterson with Perma Core Cranberry Thread
Finished Size: 70" x 73" after washing.


Lisa C said...

You have a great finish. I wish I could come up with original ideas but all I can do is copy other people's original ideas! The black is just --- well, there's not a word. Fabulous.

Geri said...

So Pretty!

Margaret said...

love the dark back ground, very dramatic

jednoiglec said...

The quilt looks gorgeous! And you're right: the colors are glowing on the black background.

Allison Sews said...

This is awesome, I love your colors!

OPQuilt said...

I love love this quilt, Diane! I think your reindeer look fine--with all those seams I doubt anyone could get a perfect 1/4" all the time. Impossible!

I smiled at the photo with Santa cuddling up under the quilt--terrific. Your choice of the black background is also spot on, as you are right--it makes all those colors jump out and sing.

Merry Christmas!

Kat said...

Awesome color choices! I love the reindeer and it really does glow against the black. Perfect backing choice, too! Great job!!

Staci said...

This is just the best quilt! I love the black background!

Leanne said...

I love this version, I think it looks perfect! And great photos too!

Susan Snooks said...

Your choice of a black background is perfect for this winter quilt! And as usual, your photos really capture its beauty! I love it!

Amy DeCesare said...

WOW! This is such a gorgeous, dramatic quilt! Lately I'm fascinated with all things Nordic, so this quilt really caught my eye. Don't worry about those reindeer - being attached to a magnificent warm quilt will fix their knees up. Seriously, they look FINE to me. Your photo of the quilt with the Christmas tree is good enough to be a Christmas card cover - I would buy a box of those cards!

Katy Cameron said...

It looks brilliant! About the only thing I've learned with lots of seams is to square up regularly, but still, it gives character when things go a wee bit wonky :o)

mascanlon said...

Just a fabulous quilt! I don't think I would have thought of the black background but it really does take this pattern to a whole nother level! K

Dianne Neale said...

Love is version of the quilt. The colours are inspired. And who doesn't love a reindeer with wonky knees? He's in very good company!

CapitolaQuilter said...

Oh I love this version of Lee's design, so rich and cozy. Fabulous and oozing with the holiday spirit.

Sarah said...

As I commented on ig, I just adore your version of this quilt. You're right, the black background makes the colours appear more bold and clear. I have the same struggles with a 1/4" seam too. I have the foot, the tape, tried moving the needle, the way I guide, everything and yet I never quite get a lock that measures exactly what it's supposed to.