Friday, November 11, 2011

Hollyhock Fabric Makes a Sweet and Summery Quilt Perfect for a Garden Party

Coral "Heavenly Hollyhock" fabric by Northcott in an original quilt.
   Like so many quilters, I love gardening, too. That made it nearly impossible to resist a bit of this Hollyhock fabric from Northcott. It sure was expensive, so I only splurged on a little...maybe a yard or so. I also picked up a half yard of a matching allover hollyhock print.  I came to discover there were many prints in the Heavenly Hollyhock line (you can see all the fabrics available in this series here, as well as what it looks like in a purple) but I only used these two, along with a wood-ish looking fabric I thought looked like fencing, and a green print for the background that I thought looked more vintage than the green that was in the collection.
   At the time, I was a relatively new quilter, and did almost everything in 12 1/12" blocks, thinking it would be easier to find help if I messed up on a standard size!

   To create this quilt, I basically knew just 3 things: I wanted a lattice effect, it was  very important to show off the flowers, and I didn't want to spend any more money! I must have looked at that fabric for 2 dozen hours before I decided to cut up the panel as you would for a kaleidoscope quilt. If I recall correctly, I did have to go back and buy about a third of a yard more of fabric, as the floral print on the butterscotch fabric had about 3 repeats to the yard, and I needed 4.  After stacking up the short lengths of fabric, I cut half-square triangles from the most interesting spots on the fabric. I was able to cut enough stacks of triangles to make 9 blocks, and decided to use the coordinating hollyhock print for the additional 4 blocks. They were easy, at least! I think that's when my love affair with larger prints began...they could be used for a whole 12 1/2" block if they were pretty enough!  As I think back, I only had 1/2 yard of the plain hollyhock fabric, and had to cut the squares on the diagonal to make them fit. Once the blocks were done, it was easy to use 2 1/2" strips of the wood fabric to make the sashing, and luckily, there were enough fabric scraps to make the cornerstones.
   The setting triangles were a challenge. I didn't have large pieces of the floral print, and I did have that glorious butterscotch fabric leftover from the background, as well as some small pieces of the hollyhock print. Happily enjoying a "make do" connection with quilters of the past, I pieced 8 triangles together to complete the quilt top. What do you think? It always makes me happy when I look at it.

1 comment:

  1. I think it's fabulous! I love lattice style quilts. I, like many quilters, am a gardener, cook, crocheter, anything else creative indulger as well. I think we just have artsy blood. I'm a new Follower by the way and I'm really enjoying your work. The only problem is I'm taking so much time I need to get back to what I need to do!