Saturday, October 8, 2011


So, I don't just read and write lame, amateurish book reviews all the time. Sometimes I do lame, amateurish crafts, too!

I quilt! I've been quilting since 2002, although I've just come off about a three-year hiatus. That's how long the quilt above had been sitting in a heap in my living room, until I decided to dust it off, brush off the cat fur and finish it last week. Before, it made me sad, sitting by itself, unfinished and unappreciated. Now, I love it.  For the quilters of you out there, I pieced this quilt by machine and hand-quilted it using both black and variegated quilting thread.

The pattern is called "Jacob's Ladder" and I like the video-game look of this quilt with the rich black contrasting with the flamboyant brights and exuberant floral border fabric. I had a lot of fun going through my stash for the brights I used in the quilt's interior.
Instructions came from one of my favorite pattern books, More Nickel Quilts, by Pat Speth. Basically a "nickel quilt" is one made using 5-inch squares of fabric as the basic unit of construction. This premise allows for a very scrap-friendly approach, and this book features patterns that are very easy to do for beginning quilters and up. I consider myself an intermediate quilter and for me the patterns combine ease of construction with beautiful results. I love traditional quilts and this book has gorgeous, straightforward traditionally-pieced patterns that you can make to suit your home decor or the taste of a gift recipient. The final look you get depends on the fabric you choose; you can use brights like I did with this quilt for a contemporary look, or vintage-inspired fabrics for a more traditional look. As long as you're consistent with theme and palette, you'll get results you or your friends will treasure!