Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Ocean Quilt

My cousin's daughter, "K", got married earlier this summer in San Francisco and they just had a reception up in Seattle for friends and family that didn't make the trip.  This is my 3rd quilt for K ... a high-school graduation quilt, a law school graduation quilt, and now a quilt to celebrate her marriage.


I haven't seen their San Francisco digs ... but her mom said think lots of blues and grays ... so i was at least pointed in the right direction!

I had personally fallen in love with a quilt that I made my sister last year and wanted to try a variation of that one ...

I started laying it out on the design wall ... and it looked too boring (top photo below) ... so I then added a little "new-growth green" and it was exactly what was needed to spice it up a bit.


On the other quilt, I had used gray as the main solid ... which I loved, but wanted this one to pop a bit more ... so I used Kona white instead.  

For the back ... I over did it as usual.  I have this "thing" for backs ... I LOVE piecing them and usually go overboard with something that adds little value but takes up a LOT of time.  In this case, I probably added 3 hours of time to the quilt for something that is visually appealing, but probably not interesting to many people besides me < sigh >.  I used Kona white on the top third of the back and Kona ash on the bottom two thirds.  


I bound it with Botanics in blue by Robert Kaufman, with one strip of navy solid on the long side to ground it a bit.  I quilted it with overall meandering pattern with white cotton thread over the entire quilt ... hoping to get that scrunched up crinkle that I love so much.  


If I had made it for me, I would have probably preferred the kona ash that I used on my sisters version ... but for this young couple just starting out ... I think the white was definitely the right choice.  Hopefully K and here new husband will find it handy as the fall chill starts to hit the air in the coming weeks.  



Hope you're having a great week out there ... 

All the best,
Lisa



Monday, August 1, 2016

How to design a quilt in Excel ...

I wanted to put together a post on how I use Excel to design my quilts.

First ... I quilt a lot in solids ... I love many of the beautiful prints that are out there, but my budget has been limited and I enjoy the simplicity of using solids to create from.  Second, this design tool only works for rectangular shapes ... it won't work for circles or triangles.  Finally, I use Excel on a Mac (granted ... not a great user experience, but it's what I have and haven't been able to convince MicroSoft to make a better version for Mac).

The following reflects a view of some placemats I want to make ... then I will follow up with a few views of how I have used it for quilt decisions.

1)  Start with a blank spreadsheet:


2)  Then I resize the height and width of the cells to make squares -- on the Mac, I use 0.21 for both the height and the width.  I then use Borders to make an outline of the quilt/placemat.  You can choose the dimension of each square.  For this placemat, I am using 1 square = 1".  That works well for high-level design -- typically, for more complex quilts I will go to 1 square = 1/2".


3)  I then fill in the square with the background color I intend to use ... remember, my quilts are usually solid, so there is often a base color that I am using.  In this case, it's gray.


4)  Then, I add color where I want to add design.


5)  In this case, I am making multiple placemats, so I copy and paste and then put in a different design with color on some.


This gives me an opportunity to evolve my design.  Try different dimensions, colors, shapes, etc.  I have had a vision in my head multiple times and when I put it on an excel spreadsheet ... it didn't go well ;-).  

You can change the view from 100% down to 25%.  I design at 100%, but then, in the case of quilts, to see the whole thing ... take it to 25%.

Here are a couple of examples of quilts designed this way ...

The back of a queen size quilt ... went with the design on the right.


A quilt design for my brother's birthday ... I didn't like either of them.


A quilt for my niece for her high school graduation.  Went with the one on the left.



As you can see, using Excel can work as a design tool for quilting ... it's not perfect ... but it's a tool I am comfortable in and it's already installed on my computer ...

Hope everyone had a great weekend ...

All the best,
Lisa


LinkWithin

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...