Amy at Park City Girl is hosting the Blogger's Quilt Festival today through Oct 16th. She asked us to post a picture of our favorite quilt and tell it's story. Well nearly every quilt is my favorite quilt, but I could only pick one, so here is my Blue Charm Applecore quilt.
Actually, it's my husband's. This quilt was finished New Year's Eve 2005. It was only 2 to 6 days late -- depending on whether it was supposed to be his Christmas present or his birthday present, and that was dependent on when I finished it. Regardless, with the exception of the quilt I gave my mother for Mother's Day 2005, it's the quilt closest to meeting the gift giving deadline.
I've previously blogged about this quilt here.
My best guess is I purchased the pattern, ruler and rotary cutter (love my Ergo 2000) in October 2004 at a quilt show. It might have been the previous year. The pattern sat for a while and then late spring 2005 I got a wild idea to make this quilt for my husband in all blue fabric -- at this time, no deadline had been set.
Previously I had been collecting music fabric, so now I added blue fabric to my collection each time I entered a quilt shop. I gathered fabric from my friends' stashes. When a fabric was both blue and music themed I scored.
Part of what makes this quilt special is the time I spent collecting the fabric with my friends. My friends T & S and I took a road trip to Iowa to hit quilt shops. We left Kansas City late afternoon on Friday and then hit 11 shops over the next 2 1/2 days. By Monday, we were so exhausted, we walked into one of the last quilt shops and said "Yep, this is a quilt shop" and then left without any of us buying anything. I picked up blue and/or music themed FQs at each shop.
Surprisingly, I ended up with only a couple of duplicates fabrics.
It helped that I put together a book of my fabric before I left home. This quilt is made with 6" circles that overlap. So, before the trip, I started cutting circles of each of my fabrics. I then scanned them 18 - 20 of them at a time, and printed off the scan so I had a record of my fabrics.
I was still collecting fabric - I wanted all 400 pieces to be unique, but impatience won out in late summer and I started it when I only had about 225 different blue fabrics. The next decision I had to make was how to arrange the pieces. I finally decided on light to dark to light. So, I took the scans I made earlier and converted them to black and white to help with value placement -- then I went back and cut additional circles where I had more fabric.
The final quilt has 400 pieces in it. Not including the 400 pieces of the backing. For the backing I purchased 10 different pieces of blue flannel.
So when it came time to putting the quilt together, I had to know where in the quilt to top fabric belonged, and which piece of the back went with it and keep all 20 rows in order or the pattern (front and/or back) would be disturbed.
I ended up stringing each row together, and as I finished each step of the process, it went back on the table in the correct position.
My husband likes the quilt -- It's too warm for me with the flannel backing, not to mention it's heavy. It think it finished about 70" square, more or less.
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