With my quilting buddies, Di B and Sue M, I signed up, through Fabric Garden, for the 6 month Jaybird Mini Quilt Club at the Sydney Craft and Quilt Fair in July, and the postman brings us a different Jaybird mini quilt pattern every month.
To add to the fun, the three of us get together for a full day once a month to sew our minis, each using our own fabric. It's amazing how different one pattern can look when three friends put their own stamp on it. I'll show you what I mean a little later in this post.
For July's pattern, the Mini Radio Way Quilt, I decided to keep the white frames but use a rainbow of fabrics in a colour wash effect across the quilt, so my first step was to draw up a grid and plan the hues for each block. Overthinking? Quite possibly :-)
Next I went to my scrap bin, pulled fabrics in every colour of the rainbow, rotary cut them into 1 and a 1/2 inch wide strips and stacked them in colour groups. I love playing with fabrics!
Following my sketched plan, I crosscut my strips and arranged them into blocks. This was where it started to become exciting!
Once I had also cut all my white framing strips I was ready to label each group with masking tape and pack them into plastic bags to take to our sewing day. Obsessive? me?
With the thinking part done, I could relax and enjoy all the fun, laughter and chatter that's inevitable when we get together.
As I sewed each block, those masking tape labels went right back on so I could keep track of my overall scheme.
This little quilt, once assembled, had quite a radiance, almost like sunshine, so I decided to quilt it in concentric circles.
As a guide I drew the first few rings with a compass because these were quite tight curves that I needed to free motion quilt, but once I had moved out a bit to where my curves were gentler I used my walking foot and its space guide to keep me on track.
For the first time I used Aurifil invisible thread for the top quilting, and Aurifil white Mako 50 in the bobbin. The invisible thread worked like a dream, and although I anticipated tension issues there were absolutely none!
I was very happy with the result, which was just as I had envisaged. It's not often I can say that ;-)
For the binding I decided that no single colour was going to do it justice, so I used red, green, blue and purple, in unequal quadrants, to stay within the rainbow theme.
In the Bible the rainbow symbolizes God's faithfulness, and as I mark off the second anniversary of Boak's death this week it seems no-so-coincidental that I should find myself playing around with rainbows. After all, it's only because God has faithfully held me close that I've managed all the fresh challenges I've faced.
Here, as promised, are our three finished, but unquilted, Radio Way quilts. The top right is Sue's, which she has made a little larger by adding extra blocks, and this will become a Blanket of Love for RPA Newborn Care. The one on the bottom is Di B's, a delicious creation that somehow reminds me of lollies!
We have more five months of Jaybird mini quilt making, and I can't wait to share them with you. Hope you're ready!