Grand Illusion Mystery Quilt + More

Hi quilty friends!

I hope that your 2015 is off to a great start! I have a few quilty goals in mind for this year so I hope to add those to a blog post soon.

One goal is to participate in some mini quilt swaps on Instagram. I’m now signed up for 4 this year, and I’ll send the first one out later this week. There is a vibrant quilt community on Instagram, and you can find me there as nwquiltedcat.

The other day as I was driving home from work, some late afternoon sun beams hit Mt. Hood with a striking intensity. The volcano seemed to glow, and I pulled over to take a picture (along with several other people!). Unfortunately, I just had a little point-and-shoot, and the pictures don’t do the scene justice.

Mt. Hood at Evening

Mt. Hood at Evening

I’ve been participating in Bonnie Hunter’s latest mystery called Grand Illusion. She released the final clue last week so I have been working on putting my top together. I went with a smaller quilt center and just a solid aqua border rather than a thin inner yellow border and pieced outer border. I used some of my leftover pieces on the back.

Here’s the quilt flimsy:

Grand Illusion Flimsy

Grand Illusion Flimsy

For the backing, I used units that would have gone into the pieced border along with some darker turquoise fabric that I had on hand. While trying to lay it out on the floor, someone jumped on the fabric!

Tiger on Grand Illusion back

Tiger on Grand Illusion back

After piecing the back, I framed it up on my HQ16 and just quilted an all-over meandering pattern with white Aurifil thread:

Grand Illusion on the HQ16

Grand Illusion on the HQ16

My Grand Illusion quilt (small version) is now quilted. I need to square it up and bind it. What do you think for binding – aqua or black or something else?

Grand Illusion quilted

Grand Illusion quilted


You can view other finished Grand Illusion quilts at Bonnie’s link up party here.

Enjoy!
~Jennifer

Broken Dishes for the Grand Illusion Mystery Quilt!

Greeting quilty friends!

For those of you who follow Bonnie Hunter, you may know that she released the first clue in her latest mystery quilt, Grand Illusion. These clues will only be available for a short while, and Bonnie will retire them from her blog next spring for inclusion in a future book.

This quilt is named for the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island in Michigan and draws its color inspiration from the hotel’s interior and grounds. I hope to visit it one day!

In October, Bonnie posted color recommendations in the form of paint chips. Although you can choose your own color scheme, I decided to stick with Bonnie’s choices as she has fabulous color sense, and I really wanted to see how these rich hues will play together in the quilt.

Here are my paint chips and fabric pulls. I’m using mostly Moda Grunge fabrics for the neutrals, black, turquoise, and pink. The yellow is Moda Marble Dot. I couldn’t find one grassy green that I really liked in a single fabric so I pulled a few fat quarter pieces into my pile.

Grand Illusion Mystery fabrics

Grand Illusion Mystery fabrics

We sewed broken dishes for part 1 this week. I’m making one-half of the normal amount of blocks so I can make a smaller sized quilt. I did buy enough fabric to make the full quantity of blocks so if I later decide to expand the quilt once the mystery is revealed, I can do so.

Here are my broken dishes units:

Grand Illusion Mystery, part 1

Grand Illusion Mystery, part 1

The colors really do pop, although my camera faded the intensity of the fabrics, particularly the turquoise. I really like how the turquoise Grunge fabric has yellow accents in it to play well with the Marble Dots.

The next clue will be released this Friday, December 5th on Bonnie’s blog so go check it out!

Happy stitching!
~Jennifer

Blogger’s Quilt Festival – Scrappy!!

Happy Monday, everyone!

For Blogger’s Quilt Festival, I just knew that I had to enter my Celtic Solstice into the scrappy category! The quilt festival is hosted by Amy over at Amy’s Creative Side.

Celtic Solstice is a mystery quilt designed by the queen of scrappy quilts, Bonnie Hunter. I participated in this mystery quilt last year. Although the free pattern is no longer available, Bonnie will include Celtic Solstice in a future book.

Quilt stats:

  • Started November 2013 and finished summer 2014.
  • Fabrics include: 7 oranges, 5 creams, 7 blues, and 9 yellows. Most pieces were from my stash, but I did pick up a few fat quarters here and there to add to the project.
  • I did a meandering quilt design using a domestic machine. Whew!
  • This was my first all scrappy quilt, and I think it turned out wonderfully!

    Finished Celtic Solstice Quilt

    Finished Celtic Solstice Quilt

    Voting begins on November 1st so I can’t wait to check out all the beautiful quilts in the scrappy category and the other categories.

    Enjoy!
    ~Jennifer

    Celtic Solstice Finished!

    Whew – what a binding marathon for me this week! I finished the quilting and binding on my Celtic Solstice mystery quilt just in time for Bonnie’s classes in Portland this coming week. This quilt is designed by Bonnie Hunter over at Quiltville. As of June 1st, the pattern is no longer a freebie, but will included in a future publication.

    For my quilt top, I kept to Bonnie’s suggested color palette of greens, oranges, yellows, and blues. The fabrics came from my stash with the exception of the green outer border and the blue backing.

    I do have a couple of piecing boo-boos on this quilt top, but I’m really happy with how it turned out in the end. There are literally hundreds of individual fabric pieces comprising the blocks in this quilt!

    The entire quilt is pieced and quilted with Aurifil 50 wt in Light Sand, #2000. The batting is Quilter’s Dream Poly in Mid Loft. I did free-motion quilting using a domestic machine.

    Here is the quilt front with my little guy:

    Ian standing in front of my finished Celtic Solstice quilt

    Ian standing in front of my finished Celtic Solstice quilt

    The quilt front by itself:

    Finished Celtic Solstice Quilt

    Finished Celtic Solstice Quilt

    I used a solid blue for the back and attached a label to the lower corner. The binding is the same green fabric as the outer border.

    Back of Celtic Solstice

    Back of Celtic Solstice

    I’m so happy to have another quilt finished!

    Happy quilting,
    ~Jennifer

    Celtic Solstice, Part 5

    Happy Monday, quilty friends!

    I finished up all the individual block units for my Celtic Solstice Mystery Quilt this past weekend by completing part 5, the split triangle units! This mystery quilt is designed by Bonnie Hunter and all the instructions for this quilt are available on her website until June 1, 2014. After that date, the instructions will be included in one of Bonnie’s future books.

    Here are my completed split triangle units (100 of them) for the small quilt. I also stitched together 1 sample of each block that will form the body of the quilt: the Birthday Girl block (originally from Quiltmaker Magazine’s 100 Blocks, volume 2) and the 54-40 or Fight block.

    Celtic Solstice, Part 5, Split Triangle Units

    Celtic Solstice, Part 5, Split Triangle Units

    For this quilt, I’ve used scraps and pieces from my stash. I’m hoping that I have enough of the same fabrics left for the borders. The only fabric that I will probably need to purchase for this quilt is the backing, although maybe I can hobble something together using scraps. We’ll see!

    I have about 1 month until I get to take 2 workshops with Bonnie! I really want to have the quilt top finished, at a minimum, so that I can take it to the workshop. This is my first large-size, all-scrappy quilt!!

    In between sewing these split triangle units, I’ve been working on cutting out my fabrics for the Aviatrix Medallion quilt-along, designed and hosted by Elizabeth Hartman of Oh Fransson. I will post my fabric selections for this project soon.

    Enjoy!
    ~Jennifer

    Test Block Maker for Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks, Vol 9

    Hi everyone,

    For the past 6 months or so, I’ve been a test block maker for Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks magazine, volume 9. This issue will be available at retailers soon and contains some really fun blocks!

    I can now show you the blocks that I tested and hope they inspire you to try something new! I had fun making these blocks while improving my piecing skills at the same time.

    In total, I made 12 test blocks using traditional piecing, paper piecing, and applique (depending on the block). The blocks are all 12.5 x 12.5 inches unfinished.

    Block #807, Spring Tulips by Nancy Mahoney

    Spring Tulips designed by Nancy Mahoney

    Spring Tulips designed by Nancy Mahoney

    Block #808, Greetings Earthling by Sue Marsh

    Greetings Earthling designed by Sue Marsh

    Greetings Earthling designed by Sue Marsh

    Block #810, Felicity by Ellen Murphy

    Felicity designed by Ellen Murphy

    Felicity designed by Ellen Murphy

    Block #827, Flying Dutchman by Doris Rice

    Flying Dutchman designed by Doris Rice

    Flying Dutchman designed by Doris Rice

    Block #844, Plant Perfect by Amanda Murphy

    Plant Perfect designed by Amanda Murphy

    Plant Perfect designed by Amanda Murphy

    Block #845, Tweet-ness by Heidi Pridemore

    Tweet-ness designed by Heidi Pridemore

    Tweet-ness designed by Heidi Pridemore

    Block #849, Tribal Crossing by Anita Grossman Solomon

    Tribal Crossing designed by Anita Grossman Solomon

    Tribal Crossing designed by Anita Grossman Solomon

    Block #865, Spin Cycle by Gudrun Erla

    Spin Cycle by Gudrun Erla

    Spin Cycle by Gudrun Erla

    Block #873, Hovering Stars by Bonnie Hunter

    Hovering Stars designed by Bonnie Hunter

    Hovering Stars designed by Bonnie Hunter

    Block #875, Robo-Bop by Kimberly Jolly

    Robo-Bop designed by Kimberly Jolly

    Robo-Bop designed by Kimberly Jolly

    Block #892, Love Letters by Amy Rullkoetter

    Love Letters designed by Amy Rullkoetter

    Love Letters designed by Amy Rullkoetter

    Block #898, Two Tulips by Margie Ullery

    Two Tulips designed by Margie Ullery

    Two Tulips designed by Margie Ullery

    I’m continuing to be a test block maker for volume 10, which will be published later this year.

    Quiltmaker is sponsoring a blog hop to celebrate the publication of volume 9 so check it out!

    Enjoy!
    ~Jennifer

    Celtic Solstice, Part 4 Completed

    I’m continuing to make slow but steady progress on my Celtic Solstice. This is a mystery quilt designed by Bonnie Hunter during the last part of 2013. I’m way behind many quilters who have already completed and quilted their beautiful finishes. The pattern is still available until about June on Bonnie’s website if you want to make your own Celtic Solstice.

    You can read about my Celtic Solstice Part 3 units here.

    For step 4, our task was to make 4-patches. I’m making the smaller quilt so I needed to make 100 of these units. I’m using Bonnie’s suggested color scheme of oranges, greens, yellows, blues, and neutrals.

    Once I had completed all the 4-patches, I couldn’t resist making one Block A: 54-40 or Fight!

    This picture shows 1 block A, the 4-patches on the floor, and units from parts 1-3 in the basket.

    Celtic Solstice 4-Patches

    Celtic Solstice 4-Patches

    My block isn’t perfect, but I’m happy with it! Now, on to step 5!

    I really need to finish this quilt because I’m attending one of Bonnie’s workshops in June, and I’d love to be able to show it to her. Wish me luck!

    Happy piecing,
    ~Jennifer