11 May 2014

Quilt: McKenna Ryan's Willow Beauty pattern

I first saw this quilt in 2010 when my mother whipped it together.  The pattern is beautifully simplistic, and really takes advantage of McKenna Ryan's lovely fabric washes.

And the fabric was available to make a quilt just like the one you see on the picture.  However, I was not so thrilled with the color combo available.  It just wasn't me.

The joy of putting together a quilt begins with the pattern, and moves to the fabric selection.  If I buy a kit, regardless of how attractive, someone else has had half my joy. 

So I collect the pattern and ponder. 

Flash forward to 2011, my mother is heading to a fabric shop that has quite a bit of Ryan's fabrics, and invites me along.  Please, what sewer can resist a fabric fondling fieldtrip?

While there, I got to see several other colorways of Ryan's design and fell for several yards of fabric.  They all came home with me.  (Now!) I know what fabrics I can use for that Willow pattern.

I chose two basic color families to start ... a blue-green and a red-violet (berrys).  Being that the willow pattern needs four different color families, I decided to take a glance across the color wheel, and match each of my chosen fabric families with its opposite for maximum contrast.  This gave me a peach/orange/rust family to oppose my blue-greens, and the yellow-green family to oppose my red-violets.

The last requirement that I gave myself was that everything (else) needed to come from stash.  Luckily, my quilt stash is just big enough (thanks to the influx of Ryan fabrics) that I was able to pull out yards and yards of fabric, finally reducing my choices to the needed 16 fabrics ... you can choose 20 if you would rather, but I thought that caused too much busy-ness.

I was ready to sing the praises of the gal I hired to quilt this for me, until I noticed this "thread nightmare" while I was binding the quilt.  What is all of that, a mistake?

And this is what it looks like on the other side.  Oh goody, she cut a 1/2" gash in my quilt, did not tell me about it, poured an entire bottle of fray check on it (see the dark splotches?),  and then quilted a tangled mass of thread onto it.  Like I wasn't going to notice?

Well, obviously not until I started binding it!  This means I will likely never have another quilt quilted by another.  She proved I cannot trust other quilters, and that makes me sad.  :(

This below is a fairly accurate color representation of my quilt.  I did change the directionality of several blocks to give it motion.  It was too jumbled otherwise for my tastes.

And the mister holding up the quilt for a full size photo.  Thanks hun!

It has a thin bamboo blend batting, and will be my new summer quilt.

I took several photos while binding it completely by machine.  A process that went much faster than I anticipated.  It is something I have dreaded for years ... YEARS I tell you.  And it was practically painless. 

Good, I have several more to bind ...

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