October 17, 2019

Quilty Hearts Quilt

A lot of quilters who design patterns also organize quiltalongs for the pattern release. It's a period of weeks or months when quilters are encouraged to buy the pattern and join the fun, making the quilt at the same time and posting their progress on social media. There are usually benchmark goals and prizes involved. A couple times a year, I get sucked into this excitement. Sometimes I talk myself out of it, but sometimes I join in, knowing from the start that I won't be able to keep up with the pace. I guess I'm not technically quilting along when I'm actually working at my own speed and making the quilt in my own time, but it's the idea that counts. And the quiltalong motivates me to start the project even though I'm always so far behind that I'm not eligible for any prizes.

This year, the pattern that got me was Quilty Hearts by Emily Dennis of Quilty Love. What do I like about this quilt? It's block-based, set on point, and scrappy. It's also easy to cut and assemble, so it was a good project to work on a little bit here and there whenever I had time (evenings and weekends).

Initially, I thought that I might give this one to someone in my family, but when it came time to choose the backing fabric, I struggled to find something that would work with their home. So I decided not to force it and changed my plan -- I gifted this quilt to my friend Jessica and her family. They have pops of color in their living room that I thought would make it the perfect home for the quilt.

The fabrics in the hearts have a lot of memories attached to them. Some of them were used in the two quilts I made for Jessica's daughters. Others appeared in quilts for my nieces, clothing I made for myself, dresses that my mom made for my nieces, and gifts I've given to friends and family. The thing I love about scrappy quilts is that they remind me of everything I've made -- I can remember where each fabric was used before.

Being twin size, this quilt needed to be longarmed, so I sent it off to my fellow Knoxville Modern Quilt Guild member Pat. The scalloped quilting adds some soft curves to this otherwise sharp and blocky design. The binding is the same fabric as the backing.

This quilt was a lot of fun to make, and I'm pretty proud that I managed to both start and finish it within the same year!

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