It's a Fireworks Show!

Thursday, June 14, 2018

This month's Island Batik ambassador challenge was to make a modern quilt, crib size or larger. Well, that's what I try to do around here every day!


Firework modern quilt using Island Batik fabrics

The most challenging part of the quilt was limiting myself to the fabrics Island Batik has sent me as an ambassador. Every idea I came up with was color specific, and I never had just the "right" colors.

Modern batik challenge with Island Batik fabrics

I finally decided to pull out the leftover fabric from my Bloom Where You're Planted quilt from the Adventurous Applique challenge last year. I have lots of pieces leftover from the "Glowing Embers" 10" stacker - all with Heat-N-Bond Lite already applied to the back. The only large yardage piece I had in my stash was a 1 1/2 yard cut of black dot fabric. I decided I would just make it work!


Working with Island Batik scraps

I chose ten different fabrics with a general rainbow order. I cut each piece 1" wide by 9 1/2" long and cut four of each strip (but only ended up using three of each).

A rainbow of Island Batik fabrics

Next I printed a circle with 20th markings. I just Googled it and chose one that had a large image size. I cut out the circle and pinned it in the center of my background fabric. This is when I realized how much I've fallen in love with Lite Steam-A-Seam 2. That fusible is sticky so you can place the pieces right on the design wall and they won't fall off when you move the quilt to the ironing board. But. These pieces were already fused with Heat-N-Bond Lite. A great fusible, but it lacks the sticky quality, so I had to lay out and fuse each piece on the ironing board individually, not knowing what the overall picture would look like.


Firework modern quilt using Island Batik fabrics

Using my acrylic ruler and the markings on the circle, I laid out one of each fabric piece in rainbow order. I lined up the edge with the circle, then made sure each piece followed the 1/2" line on the ruler.


Firework modern quilt using Island Batik fabrics

Once all ten colors were fused, I used the same method to add ten more strips in-between the previous ones, this time 5" away from the circle. I placed the colors as close to opposite as possible.


Firework modern quilt using Island Batik fabrics

After fusing all the pieces, I hung the quilt top back up on my design wall (just a flannel backed table cloth), and instantly saw that the dark purple fabric blended too much with the background fabric.


Firework modern quilt using Island Batik fabrics

Since Heat-N-Bond Lite is not permanent, I was able to use the iron to re-heat those pieces, then peel them off the background. Luckily, I was able to find a replacement fabric in the stack that would work!


Firework modern quilt using Island Batik fabrics

Then I went to bed. And as it often happens, I thought of a way to spice up the design a bit. So the next morning, I cut six circles from each fabric. I used a quarter, a dime, and the tip of an Aurifil spool to trace the circles, then I cut them out with scissors.


Making raw edge circles for applique

The circles are about 1" in diameter, 1/2", and 1/4".


Raw edge circles ready for applique

I pressed three circles, from largest to smallest, at the end of each strip. I left about 1/8" between them, but definitely think 1/4" would have been better. After putting it back up on the design wall, I immediately thought this design would look very cool as crayons, or pencils!


Firework modern quilt using Island Batik fabrics

For the back, I decided to open a 10" stacker of Elementz fabrics. I just sewed the squares together, 5 across and 7 down.


Elementz Island Batik fabrics

I pin basted the quilt (as usual) on my dining room table, then picked matching 50wt Aurifil threads.

Starting at the top of the circle in the photo below and going clockwise, the ten colors are:
#2250 Red
#2255 Dark Red Orange
#2215 Peach
#1104 Neon Orange
#2135 Yellow
#1147 Light Leaf Green
#2725 Light Wedgewood
#2540 Medium Lavender
#2581 Dark Dusty Grape
#2455 Medium Carmine Red


A rainbow of Aurifil 50wt thread

Using the lines on the printed circle (which had markings for 10ths, 20ths, and 100ths), my acrylic ruler, and a Hera marker, I marked the lines I wanted to quilt for just one color at a time.


Firework modern quilt using Island Batik fabrics

I started by using my free motion foot on my Juki TL-2010Q to stitch just inside the raw edge of each fabric strip and circle. Then I would switch to my walking foot to quilt the lines.

I quilted one line straight through the middle of each "ray," and one on either side of that. Then I skipped the next marking, but quilted lines on the next markings. So each ray got five quilted lines of a matching color.


Firework modern quilt using Island Batik fabrics

For the next ray, I would do exactly the same process. This would "fill in" the missing line from the previous color. Since each ray had a matching color on the opposite side of the quilt, I could pivot just slightly after reaching the center and continue to the other side of the quilt following the line from my Hera marker.


Firework modern quilt using Island Batik fabrics

It was quite time consuming. But totally worth it! The center has 100 lines, each 3.6 degrees apart.


Firework modern quilt using Island Batik fabrics

The lines aren't perfect. At the edge of the quilt, the distances between lines are not exactly the same. But when you stand back just a bit, you don't even notice.


Firework modern quilt using Island Batik fabrics

I machine bound the quilt using 2 1/4" binding from a lime green dot Island Batik fabric.


Firework modern quilt using Island Batik fabrics

The back really shows off the quilting too!


Modern quilt using Elementz Island Batik fabrics
Modern quilt using Elementz Island Batik fabrics
Modern quilt using Elementz Island Batik fabrics


The finished quilt is right around 44" x 54" - about a crib size or lap quilt.


Modern quilt using Elementz Island Batik fabrics

As you know, I love trying new things. And I'm very pleased with how the quilting turned out on this one! It looks just like a colorful firework to me! Speaking of fireworks, wouldn't this look stunning in red, white, and blue?!


Firework modern quilt using Island Batik fabrics

Next month's Island Batik ambassador challenge is to make a quilt that has a secondary design. I'm already brainstorming and designing, and I know I'll be trying several new things with that one too! Surely I'm not the only one that plans the next quilt when still working on the current one! Right?!?


Firework modern quilt using Island Batik fabrics

This is my 30th quilt finish for the year!!

Linking up with Needle & Thread Thursday at My Quilt Infatuation, Can I Get Whoop Whoop at Confessions of a Fabric Addict, Finished or Not Friday at Busy Hands Quilts, TGIFF at Lisa in Port Hope, and Friday Foto Fun at Powered by Quilting.


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18 comments:

  1. So creative and very striking!

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  2. I absolutely love this! I love the simple but striking design and quilting!

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  3. It's gorgeous, Laura. You come up with the most creative ideas.

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  4. Adding the circles was a great way to change up the design, and I love all the lines of quilting you added (and how you know they are 3.6 degrees apart!)!

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  5. This is a gorgeous fireworks quilt - and a way that those who shy away from the noise and smoke of real fireworks can enjoy! I love the addition of the circles - they really add a little something else to the quilt. And the quilting - so great, so mathematical and so terrific. Congrats!

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  6. I love this! The circles add so much to the design and all that quilting is amazing. I'm planning at least two quilts in advance, not counting the two I'm currently working on, lol :)

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  7. That is just amazing! It looked good even before you added the circles, but once you added those .. WOW! So creative!

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  8. What a beautiful quilt. I would say that anyone who bothered to measure the lines for equidistance was looking at the trees and not the forest. You did a wonderful job. And yes, I'm always thinking way ahead...just not getting as much done as you. Congratulations.

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  9. Great photos and explanations - thanks for the enjoyable "play by play"!

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  10. WOW! So cool. I love how you have the angle circle in the middle. So clever! Thanks for linking up today!

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  11. Looks great! The background fabric is perfect!

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  12. Very beautiful quilt, thanks for the tutorial. I love to make this one also.

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  13. Beautiful!!! It looks like it would be fun to make.

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  14. The circles at the end of the "crayons" put life into your piece, and the quilting is perfect for the quilt! You did an excellent job, the quilt is beautiful!

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  15. Fab-u-lous. The dots were truly inspired. In fact, the entire quilt is inspired.

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  16. It is gorgeous! I love the dots, too. They really add an extra touch to each line.
    Oh my gosh! The math! That would have driven me insane. Honestly, it's just a stunning quilt. The rays of colored thread were brilliant. I can't say enough about all the things I love about this quilt. Thanks for sharing it and for the very detailed information.

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  17. Really amazing finish! I would love to see this in two or three colors as you suggest! Thanks for linking to TGIFF

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  18. This is beautiful! I don't do much applique ever...but if this is the results...I may rethink my stand! Love the quilting!

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