Quilter's Academy - Volume 2 - Sophomore Year

Vol 3 - Junior Year

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Project 7 & 8 - Town Square / Asian Nights

I love this quilt!  It's kind of 2 projects in one as I made the Town Square pattern first, then when I decided I was happy with it (and cause I cut too much fabric) I extended it into the larger Asian Nights design.

I have been working, truly, but between groups, socialising, house-hunting, husbands locking themselves out of the house and trips interstate (another coming up soon) there's not been much progress in the sewing room. 

I started adding the borders to this top a few days ago - I decided to be unadventurous and follow Harriet's lead, doing the same borders as she did on her quilt.  What can I say - Harriet's quilt looks fabulous and I want to try my best to have a stunning looking quilt too. 

Harriet's stunning Asian Nights quilt

I added a narrow blue border and was set to add the dark brown one as well - but disaster!  I didn't have enough fabric.  I measured the borders, making them an inch and a bit smaller than I wanted, but wasn't able to eke enough from the leftovers to go all the way around.  Frustratingly, I was only about 3 inches short on the top and bottom borders.  Ho Hum. 

I finally made it into town this morning and was relieved to find they had some of the fabric left.  If they didn't it wouldn't have been a disaster - another colour/print would have done, but I did have my heart set on using the same fabric as I used in the top.  Anyhow, I got them sewed on and here's how it looks so far...........

Borders on finally!

I had intended to follow the quilting suggestion for this top from the book, but using the same cable design I've used previously for the border.  While buying the extra fabric, I found a small selection of stencils in the shop (why stencils are so difficult to find here is beyond me - they are around, but the choices are really limited).  I decided it would be a great border for this quilt and purchased it. 

Because I cut the borders narrower than I wanted, this design only just fits!

Then I started fiddling around and thought maybe I could use the stencil on the top itself as well, in a diagional direction.  I also chose one of the stencils Harriet sent, for the centre block.

Harriet's stencil is priced at $2.89 - the one I purchased here cost $12.95 ????? 

I've chosen a beautiful wool batting to use with this quilt.  Hobbs Tuscany Wool.  A local quilter/teacher had a very small supply of this batting and I bought 2 packs.  The packs are 'throw size' and too small for this top, but Harriet has instructions for splicing batting together, which I'm going to do for this.  Sadly, this is probably the last I'll see of this batting, as the seller is doubtful she can get anymore of it.  If I have any leftovers after splicing and making the sandwich, I'll make a couple of samples first.

Cotton is lovely, but winter is coming and I'd like a warm quilt to snuggle in - you can't beat wool for warmth and snuggling!

I'll ponder the quilting design a bit more before committing (your comments are always welcome).  Once decided I'll use pounce powder to mark it.  I'm not nervous about marking the design before sandwiching and basting (chalk pencils tend to rub off during this process) as I can always use the stencil and powder to re-mark, something I can't do if I use a light-box. 

Next week I'm off to the Australian Quilt Show in Melbourne, which I'm very excited about.  Sadly no classes for me, but I have booked for Jinny Beyer's lectures on Colour and another on Border prints.  While there I want to see which suppliers have what, particularly battings and I'll also keep a lookout for stencils.

Tomorrow night I have a class in free motion quilting with Stephanie Newman.  It's a 3 part class for beginners and I'm hoping to get some hands-on tips for this technique.  I really need help with stops/starts and also with hand/foot speed co-ordination.  Stephanie is very experienced and I've heard is also an excellent teacher.  She has a couple of quilts in the Melbourne show as well, so I'll be very interested in viewing those as well.  Stephanie's blog can be found here..... http://stephanienewman.blogspot.com/


  1. Lesley-Wow! Just beautiful-love the colors that you picked and you did such a fine job!
    This is the project we worked on when Harriet was here in town. What a great class that was! Like I say- I felt like I "won the lotto" getting into her class!
    I love this quilt top. It is a fun one to work on. I also like the neat trick she taught us to lessen the bulk of the 9 patch squares. I know when it comes time for quilting, it will make it much easier to "glide" along with your design.
    I like the stencils that you have picked out. They look like they are going to work real well- Can't wait to see it all done!
    Have a great time at the Quilt show- take a lot of photos!
    That's where I get a lot of inspiration for my projects-some day I may get to enter something of my own!LOL!

  2. Lovely quilt - glad you managed to find a bit more of the border fabric. You should bring it along to the next meeting of the Warped Wenches, so we can all be impressed!