A Quilter’s KD

It seems my On the Road to Spring quilt was a true harbinger of spring. Last week we had record-breaking temperatures of 27°C that beat the old record by10°. Alas, the heat wave has passed. On the plus side, I have a brand new quilt to cuddle under!

Last month I told you I had started  Randi’s quilt along and now it’s done.

I’m really pleased with the colours and fabrics and how easily it went together. The quilt is called A Quilter’s KD because the orange reminds me of the inorganic colour of Kraft Dinner cheese sauce and the rectangles are shaped like KD noodles. The backing is Robert Kaufman’s Pointillist Palette from the mid-1990s. Finished size: 50” x 60”.

A Quilter's KD, detail

My free-motion machine quilting skills don’t seem to transfer too well to anything larger than 2 feet square. Which is one of the reasons the quilt’s been washed already. If I could remember to keep from stitching the whole top together I would quilt the segments first, then sew it together; but a 30-year-old habit is difficult to break. Once a quilt top’s up on my design wall I just keep sewing till it’s done (or becomes a UFO).  And now, A Quilter’s KD is done, done, done.

A Quilter's KD, back

Starting On the Road to Spring

It seems that many of the quilts I’ve made use muted colours. Maybe that’s because I find neutrals to be peaceful and relaxing, whereas vibrant colours are stimulating and I feel some self-imposed pressure to do something spectacular with them. But after working on the Cake Mix quilt I was ready to work with some lively colour.

My LQS had a pre-inventory sale in early January and I picked up a sunny orange solid, a Kaffe Fassett orange print, and two other fabrics. Now what? Enter: On the Road to Spring, a quilt along run by Randi at I Have to Say, in 2010.  The pattern calls for 10 prints and one solid. So I put the two new orange fabrics to work and was able find the 9 remaining prints in my stash (yay!).

My assembly technique was a little different from Randi’s. Skip this paragraph if you’re not interested in the details. Rather than stitch together one row at a time,  I string pieced each solid square to a rectangle. Let’s call that a unit. And since the quilt is 20 rows long and 5 rectangles wide, I set aside 20 units and sewed the remaining 80 units together in pairs to make 40 sets, then I sewed the sets together and ended up with 20 almost-finished rows. Added one unit to each of the rows and fini.

As Randi warned, it did take at least half an hour to find an arrangement I liked. It got very tiresome moving the strips around my design wall, so I printed a colour photo of the wall, cut it up, and played with 8.5-inch, rather than 50-inch, strips. Once I had a paper layout I liked I replicated it using the fabric strips. Of course, I didn’t stop there and fussed around a little bit more.

This was a fast and fun quilt to make. The top is finished, sandwiched, and basted to a backing that also came from my stash (double yay!). And it’s partially quilted thanks to Roger at Yarn Forward and Sew On, who fixed my sewing machine. Turns out the machine quilting problem I reported last April was with the machine and not the operator.

I hope to finish my rather mediocre quilting job over the next week. Didn’t realise how rusty I was and decided I just have to work through it. Then on to the binding.