But first in all it's glory I give you...........
Circles. Goodness knows I have tried to give it another name, but I can only think of it as Circles, so Circles it is.
To quilt it first I secured the blocks going around the circles and diamonds, then I did a meander on the background with Aurifil 2600, pale grey to allow the quilting to blend in. The circles was a more difficult decision, I wanted a variegated thread so I decided to use what I had, King Tut 936, quite a strong yellow red and green, if I had realised it would take so much (I ran out and had to buy more) I would have probably bought a paler one, but I didn't. I quilted pebbles in the circles varying it only with the odd double one. I'm not proficient at quilting and this was my the first time I had used a meander or pebbles, in fact only the second time I had free motion quilted but I think it's high time I made use of all the Craftsy classes I have bought and take a step away from my walking foot.
I left the diamonds unquilted.
The borders were more difficult, I ended up staying with a small meander in the background borders and doing a single line with big pebbles, I say pebbles, circles they are not!
Want to see the back?
I really must apologise for the shocking colours, it is so difficult taking pics at this time of year when it is so dull and rainy. However, there is nowhere to hide using a contrasting colour on a plain background is there?
You have seen the back before. All I did was stitch together leftovers of various sizes and shapes adding in pieces of the background, adding large pieces of the background top and bottom to make it long enough to make a panel for the back. I cut a piece of standard width fabric about two thirds across and inserted the panel. It uses up leftovers and allows me to use standard width fabric therefor saving money.
You can see the quilting better here, the meander varies a little in size but all in all I'm fairly pleased with it.
You can see the pebbles and wonky border circles here, I'm not sure if I should go back and add some more quilting to the coloured border, what do you think?
For those of you who have only started reading recently here is how I made it.
The first thing I did was to decide about the quilt style and size. I had look at a number of circle quilts, but the circles were mostly too big or too small, so I drew it out. When I was sort of happy with it I counted the blocks so I could determine the size. The block layout I decided to be 6 x 6, and I decided on an 8 inch block. That gave me a size of 48 inches square before borders. Fine, I can get 5 blocks out of an 8.5 inch strip, so I needed 7 x 8.5 inches for my background, 59.5 inches plus a little wiggle room to allow for straightening and such. I decided on 2 meters, then I would have a little left over for scrappy backgrounds, but 2 yards works too. I can only buy in meters and centimetres in the UK.
Now the circles. I knew I wanted quarter circles in two corners of the squares, so it wasn't too busy. I drew part of the square to make my template and marked 4.5 inches to allow for the seam allowance. Actually I didn't have my thinking head on as it should have been 4.25 inches, but it makes little difference. I got out my compasses which I bought when I started quilting and had never used in 10 years, REALLY, and I kept them all this time. So, I drew my quarter circle for the template. I could have just drawn around a dish of the approximate size either, the halved and quartered it, but my brain doesn't always think in the logical way, until I have finished the hard way that is. Next I glued the paper to the back of a cereal box and cut it out. If it was something I would use in the future I would have used a plastic template sheet but it's likely to be a one off.
Then it was just a matter of drawing around the template on freezer paper, and cutting them out. I ironed the papers on to the back of the fabric. and left a quarter inch on the curve so I could turn it under and tack in place followed by a zap with the iron for a nice sharp edge. The seam allowance was already included on the straight sides.
I didn't want to do bonded applique because I intended to trim the background just before stitching the blocks together to reduce bulk. I could of course have removed the paper leaving the edge turned under, and tacked the fabric to the background before stitching it with a buttonhole stitch, in fact if I ever consider making it again I will probably do just that as some of my appliqué stitching started to come away a little I noticed when I was quilting it, so I zapped it with the machine. See, I always tell you the things I could have done better.
When I put them together they were fine but just a bit ordinary and needed some more interest.
So, I added a stitch and flip triangle to the plain corners using 1.5 inch squares.
I added a one inch finished background border, a two inch finished coloured border, and another 1 inch finished background border. The grey of the diamonds was added as cornerstones to the coloured border.
I used the grey diamond fabric for the binding, which had posed a bit of a problem as I had used fabric I had, only the shop didn't have any more, panic! However a bit of hunting and two fat quarters were found so it has a 'few' more joins than normal but it's hardly noticeable. Good job I went for the extra fabric straight away, I'd never get it now. So there it is, it ended up 56 inches square.
My last post about circles, sad :-( There again I will be talking about Gypsy for at least a couple more years until that's finished so there is my consolation. No I haven't made the back yet, too busy with..........secret sewing!
Yes I promised a sneak peak, didn't I?
Here it is, all layered and basted, ready to start quilting in a couple of days! What? You didn't think I was about to show you the front did you?
Ok, as you can probably tell it is a quilt, rather than a wall hanging or something. What's it for? For Cheryl and Paige's Modern Plus Sign Book Hop starting on May 12th.
There are over 40 bloggers taking part, I will be posting on March 21st and you will see my version of one of the quilts. The book is out now and available in hardcopy and a digital version. I made a block for a group quilt in the book too, ages ago, I feel as if I've been keeping this secret for eons.
I have been doing lots of other stuff this week but I ran out of time to tell you, I've been chasing squirrels too, but more about that next time.
With smiles from,
Linking up with:
Let's Bee Social
Wednesday Wait Loss
Needle and Thread Thursday
Can I Get A Whoop Whoop?
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Finished Or Not Friday
Crazy Mom Quilts