Butterfly Block for Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks, Vol10 + Giveaway

Hi everyone,

I’m so excited to share with you my first block published in Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks magazine. My block is #958 and it appears in volume 10 which arrives at retailers this month.

My block was inspired by my son and his love of butterflies. The block has a modern twist to it because I decided to use plenty of negative space and a block (pixel style) design.

While visiting the Victoria Butterfly Gardens earlier this year on vacation, we saw this beautiful Blue Morpho butterfly.

Blue Morpho Butterfly

Blue Morpho Butterfly

Soon after, this other butterfly decided to crawl up my son’s arm much to our surprise!

I started drafting my butterfly block by sketching it out on paper and then did my fabric calculations.

Next, I cut some squares from various blue fabrics and some strips from white fabric:

Butterfly Block Components

Butterfly Block Components

I made a blue version and a pink/purple version. The blue version appears in Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks, volume 10 and I kept the pink version.

Butterfly Block in Quiltmaker's 100 Blocks, Volume 10

Butterfly Block in Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks, Volume 10

Here are the two blocks together:

Blue and Pink Butterfly Blocks

Blue and Pink Butterfly Blocks

This block is very versatile and you could use it to make quilts, table runners, or pillows. I decided that I needed a cute butterfly pillow for my office so I used my pink block, some extra Kona Snow fabric, and some silver metallic thread by Superior to make an adorable pillow.

Yes, I did use metallic thread on the free-motion quilting using my domestic machine, and it turned out wonderfully.

Ready for a giveaway?
Quiltmaker is giving away 1 free copy of Volume 10 to one of my blog readers, and I’m giving away a second copy! To enter, just leave me a comment, and I will pick a winner using a random number generator at the end of the blog tour. Please leave me a way to contact you. Sometimes Blogger and WordPress do not communicate very well.

I hope that you are enjoying Quiltmaker’s 100 blocks blog tour and that you find inspiration in the many wonderful blocks!


Quiltmaker’s Blog Hop Starts Today!

Happy Monday, everyone!

Quiltmaker’s blog hop tour for volume 10 of the fabulous 100 Blocks issue starts today! My blog date is tomorrow where I will feature my block and have a giveaway.

For today, I want to show you what I made for this issue as a block tester. In all, I tested a dozen blocks over the course of a few months. I then had the opportunity to make a sample quilt using 3 different blocks. I called my quilt “Bali Posies” and it appears in the Block Tester’s Gallery section on page 95 in the magazine.

If you happen to be in the Golden, Colorado area between December 2014 and February 2015, all the block tester quilts are on display at Quiltmaker’s office. Wish I could go see them in person! If you do go, I’d love to see a picture.

I used 3 different blocks in the layout:
#947, Nine-Patch Posies by Kay Mackenzie
#989, French Twist by Celine Perkins
#999, Diamonds are Forever by Susan Work

The fabrics are Bali Paradise and Bali Batiks from Hoffman California Fabrics.

Here’s a look at Bali Posies:

Bali Posies Quilt Front

Bali Posies Quilt Front

Bali Posies Quilt Back

Bali Posies Quilt Back

I added some interest to the center block (#947) by applying some crystals to the center of each flower and along each leaf.

Here’s a close-up of the center block:

Bali Posies Center Block

Bali Posies Center Block

I did free-motion quilting using Aurifil 50 wt. cream thread with an all-over pattern over most of the quilt. I did some echo-quilting in the posies petals, circles in the posie centers, and some other detailed stitching in the leaves and flower pot.

I was also excited to see that Sandy George, another block tester, made a quilt using my Butterfly block (#958). Her quilt is called “Butterfly Kisses” and you can see it in the Block Tester’s Gallery on page 94 in the magazine.

Come back tomorrow and see the inspiration behind my Butterfly block and for your chance to win a copy of the magazine!


Picture Piecing

I started organizing my sewing room a bit this weekend. I didn’t get too far because I was distracted by some of the patterns, books, and fabrics that I “re-discovered.” One of those books is called Picture Piecing by Cynthia England.

Picture Piecing Book

Picture Piecing Book

The idea behind this technique is to create realistic pictorial quilts by piecing fabric together rather than using an applique technique. It differs from paper piecing in that you use freezer paper and iron it to the right side of your fabric rather than using it on the back of the fabric. Another major difference is that you don’t sew through the paper like you would in paper piecing. This means that there is no paper to remove at the end of your project!

I highly recommend getting a copy of Cynthia’s book to learn more about this fascinating technique.

The book contains a small butterfly practice pattern so you can get a feel for the technique before moving onto more complex projects.

Here’s my sample butterfly:

Batik Butterfly

Batik Butterfly

I really like how the butterfly turned out and plan to use it in a yet-to-be-determined project!

One of my goals this year is to design my own picture pieced pattern. Before I do so, I went ahead and ordered one of Cynthia’s patterns to gain more experience. You can order the patterns directly from her website.

Have you sewn a picture pieced quilt before? If so, please share in the comments below!

Happy piecing!