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Monday, 25 March 2013

A Labour of Love...

In January I sent out a stack of precut HST triangles to my fellow Brit Bees.  Greys, oranges and pinks, one of my all time favourite combos.

I requested (another, I know) whopping 24" block, instead of the usual two 12 inchers.  I toyed with just asking for random placement, but then decided on the Diamond Ripples block by Lara Finlayson from the Modern Blocks book.

Here's my original block...

Obviously as it was to be a Brit Bee quilt, Diamond Ripples was immediately renamed Diamond Nipples in my head at least, and is now affectionately thought of as my Brit Bee Nips!  You can stick to Ripples if you prefer.

I received all my blocks back by the end of February, and since then I have stitched up the mega-siggy block, embroidered over all our names, pieced and then quilted my new favourite quilt.

I am really trying to build up the tension here, but what the heck, here it is...

Ta da!!!
I bagged a seriously cheap bolt end of Loulouthi whilst all the blocks were out with the ladies, and I couldn't wait to use it on the second side; no backside here, I love both sides equally!


I madly decided that I wanted to contrast with all the pointy angles with some curvy quilting.  But FMQing is not my friend, and the only pattern I kept coming back to was the continuous spiral, on a 72" square quilt, with 1.25" spacing...


As it happens, that's 42 full 360 degree turns, plus corners!

NB.  If you quilt an anti-clockwise spiral, you will end up with more and more of your quilt passing through the throat of your machine until you reach gridlock.  If you lie awake at night knowing there must be a solution, and then finally twig that flipping the quilt and working from the other side will rectify the problem, and an ever decreasing throat-mass, you will be a lot happier.  If you are smart like Fiona, you will realise this quite quickly; if you are a bit slow, like me, and are too stubborn to google it, take heed!

Anywho, this quilting was hard, I still ache, but I LOVE IT!!!

I used a variegated 28wt Aurifil thread (4657), it's reddy-pink, orange and yellow, and works perfectly.  I almost chickened out and went for a straight grey or orange, but I am so glad I didn't.

Once it was quilted I thought I wanted a solid for the binding, to give it a proper frame, but firstly I didn't have enough of any solid, let alone a perfect one; secondly I didn't want to wait, and thirdly I had the perfect print ready and waiting.  Patty Young's Dandelion print in raspberry.  I bought a couple of yards ages and ages ago on sale, and the last serendipitous 20" was absolutely perfect as an almost solid in the colour I wanted...


As you know, I was a bit worried that the embroidery of the siggy block was going to end up looking like a dog's dinner after a wash and tumble; so many useful and wise suggestions received, brain not fully in gear, I promptly forgot them all and remembered at the point when I had basted the whole quilt!

But fear not...
Before & After.
The photos are not too clear, the grey block is 16" square, which is why the signatures appear so teeny, but rest assured, all the embroidery is still perfectly legible, and another favourite thing about this quilt.

I cannot thank all my fellow Brit Bee ladies enough for their sterling piecing, and speedy return of blocks, you have enabled me to have the most wonderful quilt...again!  Mwah mwah mwah xxx

As you are probably aware, us Brit Bees are an emotional bunch, and not getting this quilt finished quickly, (even though it is on my FAL list), was never an option.  I know that as a Bee quilt some people may not think that I have made best use of all the mighty skills we have between us, but the fact that these blocks all merge and flow together is exactly what I love about it.  A lot of love and meaning got stitched into this quilt, and it will rank up there as one of my most treasured possessions for always.
I am snuggled up under it right now; the only perk of this damn cold weather!!

If you need me, you know where you can find me, cosy and smiling xxx

68 comments:

  1. This is a seriously gorgeous creation! I love the blocks, the colors, the quilting!!

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  2. What fantastic nips you have ;) gorgeous quilt yet again ladies of the Brit Bee! I would be jealous if I didn't have a new bee quilt in the making :)

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  3. Absolutely stunning!! I love the color combination too!! I am not so brave with my quilting but this is tempting!!

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  4. That is one seriously gorgeous quilt! All that back breaking quilting was definitely worth it too, great job! :o)

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  5. It's AWESOME!! Amazing work :)

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  6. Just gorgeous - LOVE the quilting!

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  7. Aw, you almost made me cry with this post! Absolutely love it and you have a perfect eye for choosing fabrics, blocks and friends.

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  8. Loving corals, pinks and greys together - beautiful

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  9. Speechless! This is just stunning wow wow wow!! And I totally love it's name haha

    Rachael

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  10. Another stunning quilt Hadley! Love the spiral quilting too. x

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  11. Really love the spiral quilting - it looks amazing!

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  12. Love your nips :) it's absolutely stunning!!

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  13. It's just beautiful and the quilting is fabulous

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  14. Another amazing finish! Well done, Brit Bee ladies!

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  15. another beautiful quilt. Brava!

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  16. Oh, H, that is one yummy quilt! Well done to all of you, but especially you for the mega quilting task! I'm too dim to grasp the quilting hint, I would expect to start in the middle with loads inthe throat, And get less as you work out to the edges? But thn I'm a minimal quilter - and dense!!!

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  17. I love it! But you knew that already!

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  18. Stunning. It doesn't look like a bee quilt which, IMO, makes it look even more fab.
    Really like it.

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  19. This quilt is stunning! And so special too. You must be really proud of all your ladies. And fab quilting too, it's perfect. :-)

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  20. Woohoo! Flippin' awesome chick! I love both sides! And thanks for making me (nearly) cry! Jxo

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  21. I love it! The back is perfect - you are so talented!

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  22. That's one great quilt - I love the colours, the design and all the love that's stitched into it. The quilting is just perfect - it looks like ripples in water.

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  23. I love this quilt! So beautiful :)

    I've wanted to join a bee for a while but keep chickening out...any tips?

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  24. Really beautiful. I like all my quilts to have two fronts too :)
    AmandaK@whatthebobbin

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  25. Love it - it is truly beautiful quilt. I am going to have to add it to my inspirational quilts board

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  26. You do know that a 24" block is equivalent to four 12" blocks, not two. They do love you. And the quilt is so excellent, this pattern turned out even better than I would have imagined.

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  27. This was so worth the the circular quilting.

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  28. I enjoyed your story almost as much as the gorgeous photos.

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  29. This is just absolutely lovely. And I agree with Diane -loved your quilt story as well.

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  30. What a fabulous quilt and a thing of beauty on both sides. It's so lovely to see quilts that have been made in friendship, with true selflessness. Thanks for posting an inspiring story and even more inspiring pictures

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  31. What a great quilt. Love the colours, love the pattern, love the quilting and the binding too.

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  32. This is stunning, and will clearly be well treasured and loved for all the special meaning that has gone into it x

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  33. Hehe I think Susan just said you are perfect for choosing her as a friend - yup I think she's right! Great quilt, great colours, great fabrics, great block and great friends! Lucky, lucky you!

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  34. Lovely! Great choice going for orange thread :)

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  35. Beautiful and such a great story. It's wonderful that it will be so treasured.

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  36. that bloody ROCKS! I'm not surprised you love it so much :-D

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  37. It's incredible! Trying to work out why the spiral thing happens is making my head hurt, though!

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  38. It's another beautiful quilt Hadley - good to think of it wrapped around you!

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  39. Ripplesnipples, hehe.. It turned out a stunner, seriously. Absolutely gorgeous. Love how the spiral and HSTs go together. Yeah, might've been a pain but so so worth it. I'd hibernate under that beauty!

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  40. A beautiful quilt and wonderful friendship.

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  41. It's a stunning quilt. Well done to all.

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  42. Gorgeous colours, you Brit Bee ladies certainly bring up the best for each ther :-)

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  43. Dare I say your best ta da yet!! Yes it is gorgeous!! X

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  44. It looks amazing Hadley! Your quilting is perfect. I love that it's double sided too. You are a very clever lady x

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  45. I just learnt a lesson....get to your blog as soon as you post then I don't have to scroll down through 48 comments before I can add mine!
    This is beautiful as always and that quilting is amazing, how did you get it so neat??

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  46. It's fabulous! But I can't get my head around the spiral quilting from the flip side making it any easier....maybe it's just too early in the a.m. to think that deeply. Will have to google, cause I certainly want to try a spiral very soon - the result is so clean and such a beautiful contrast to the sharp points. Great job!

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  47. Wow, it's stunning! I love the colours and might just have to copy them. Do your fellow Brit Bees get joint custody of the quilt, or is it all yours?

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  48. totally gorgeous stunning quilt! I LOVE that colourway and your quilting - must try that on next quilt I do (if I even finish another one!). I completely understand how much you love (both sides) of this beauty - well done all of you :)

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  49. Its the sign of a great quilt when it is loved so much, its beautiful! X

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  50. Fabulous, now we can shout across the room to you at FQR to get your nips out. You will, of course, be brining it, right? ;o)

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  51. Oh flipping heck, Mrs, that's amazing - I didn't realise the blocks were all going to merge together like that...proud to be part of it :) x

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  52. I expect you are grinning like a cheshire cat over this beauty! Congratulations on an amazing finish!! Love the spiral quilting- rather you than me!

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  53. It is absolutely stunning, I adore it! The blocks, the fabric, the quilting....everything. Enjoy it xx

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  54. I really love this... especially the quilting.

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  55. So Gorgeous! What a great color palette and such a fun layout.

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  56. It is seriously stunning!! A perfect quilt!

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  57. Beautiful!! I love the fabric choice!

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  58. What a gorgeous quilt - amazing result from all of the blocks together and I love the back with one block tipped off! Great colors and great Bee quilt. By the way - I have taken note about the circle quilting for an upcoming project - thanks for the tip!

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  59. It's gorgeous! I think I may love te other side more! I quilted my first spiral in January. Yep, I went the wrong way. Live and learn!

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  60. Wow Hadley, what a mammoth job you had of quilting this! I really love how our blocks all merge together. Loving both sides equally. Can't wait to get my grubby hands on it in person!

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  61. HI there, this gorgeous quilt was an inspiration behind my Comma Wedding Quilt, and I just want to thank you for that and ask if I can borrow a picture (with a link to this post) from your blog for an upcoming blog post I'm doing which will share instructions and my inspiration. Here is my quilt and blog post:

    http://emmalinebags.blogspot.ca/2013/07/a-comma-quilt-finish-asymmetrical.html\

    I would love it if you had a look see! Thank you, Janelle

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  62. HI Hadley, I finally got around to that post. Thank you for allowing me to link to your blog. I love your quilt!

    Here is the post:

    http://emmalinebags.blogspot.ca/2013/08/a-modern-wedding-quilt-cutting-piecing.html

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  63. Oh WOW - I cannot tell you how much I love this quilt, and what a thrill I get out of seeing the block I designed turn into a finished object! It is absolutely beautiful, and you have used some of my favourite colours and fabrics!

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