November Challenge Week 4 - my work

Posted by on 27 November 2018 | 2 Comments

This week Virginia sent me a photo of her challenge. She chose a water background, bird's eye view, and hibiscus. "I have always liked the 9-Patch but seldom found a pattern I was interested in. So thought this would be the challenge for me too," says Virginia. This is what she made.

virginia keim hibiscus over water

Virginia's challenge

What a wonderful way to dress up a nine-patch! Thanks for joining in Virginia.

Now it is time for me to finish my quilt. Before getting started on the quilting, I need a backing fabric. I think this one might be perfect. What do you think?

ruth w4 1background fabric

this sky fabric will make an interesting backing I think

To bring this piece together I'll start with the flower and free-motion the petals. I selected a variegated orange thread and stitched back and forth along each petal. That definitely makes the petals look less pieced as it sort of obscures the seams.

ruth w4 2quilted petals

petals stitched

I like the way it has brought the petals to life. I think I will leave the center part for now and move onto the background.

When we started this challenge, Emma was describing the perspective views to me so I could look for possible photos I could take. The "Looking Up" image was difficult as the only thing I could see was a plane flying by. At the time, I actually snapped the photo. It was a very grey day I might add.


plane flying overhead

Of course, a plane isn't a natural element and at the time I had wished it was a bird. Unfortunately, a bird didn't fly overhead but it did give me an idea for my quilting. I decided to add some quilted birds on the sky background.

I sketched a bird on paper to start the process...

ruth w4 3sketched bird


... then drew it on Freezer Paper to cut out for a template.

ruth w4 4bird drawn on freezerpaper

bird on freezer paper

I only cut out one but used the cut-out section as a guide to know where I might place an additional bird.

ruth w4 5bird positions

Using a light-weight thread, one I usually use for the bobbin but also love to quilt with, I quilted the first bird adding in feathers on the wings and tail. I did have to double track a little over the lines and I also needed to remove the paper to stitch the feathers.

ruth w4 6bird quilting

quilting the first bird

ruth w4 7bird quilted

First bird quilted

At this time I still had the cut-out section pressed on my background and I figured it was probably a lot easier to use that to quilt around as I wouldn't need to remove the paper to quilt in the feathers. It ended up being more accurate too.

ruth w4 8second bird quilted

2nd bird quilted

I added one last bird.

To finish off I wanted to quilt down the background. I selected a variegated blue thread...

ruth w4 9thread

variegated thread for quilting

and echoed around the flower twice...

ruth w4 10echo quilting

Echo quilting around petals

and then added some wavy lines to connect the birds...

ruth w4 11background quilting

Background quilting

Here's how the back looks.

ruth w4 12quilting on back

On the back

After this was complete I felt it still needed more background quilting but I didn't want to use more colored thread so went back to the light-weight thread and added two more lines between each of the blue lines.

ruth w4 13more quilting

more quilting added

With it all squared up, now all that is left is to do the binding.

ruth w4 15trimmed ready for binding

Quilting finished and ready to bind


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  • This is such an interesting prospective! I love it!

    Posted by Claudia W, 11/12/2018 1:14pm (1 year ago)

  • I especially like the quilted bird. It seems to be the attention to detail in the quilting that brings the piece to life. Bleed to see what I can add to my piece. Thanks to both of you for a great challenge.

    Posted by Barbara F, 28/11/2018 12:26pm (1 year ago)

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