Sunday, July 12, 2015

Crop Circles - Mystery Quilt finished

At this year's  Patch n Peace, ( annual quilt retreat I go on) Betty, one of the organisers ran a Mystery quilt. Early on in the year she sent out a list of the fabric requirements for the quilt and I got mine organised really early.

The quilt had been featured in a magazine and was called Fooled By Thelma by Karen Cunningham

One of the steps involved making circles. There were collective moans when this was revealed. We had the choice to make them raw edge applique or to turn the edges. I went for raw edge as I wanted to get it finished as quickly as possible. Usually I use iron on stuff when doing applique and then button hole stitch around the fabric by hand but this time, in the interest of speed I glue basted the circles to the background fabric and then straight stitched around the edge. This was a new technique for me and worked well.

I was pleased to get all 9 blocks completed by the end of the weekend. I didn't get a lot else done but they were finished

The pattern didn't have borders with it. We could finish it off however we pleased. Betty had with her another quilt pattern which showed the half circle motif that we had on the edges of our quilts finished off in the border. I really liked this idea so back home I made more circles for the border and put them on. I wanted the quilt to be rectangular rather than square and to be a size to fit a single beds in the spare room.

I played around with the borders for a bit till I was happy with the result. An extra row of circles on the ends to give it length and using up the half square triangles down the side. These were from the flying geese units in the blocks. I can never just cut those suckers off and throw them away... I always make them into hst and this time I used them up in the same quilt... bonus.

For the backing I used some string blocks that I had foundation pieced a good few years ago. I had pieced them into a rectangular piece that I had never finished off. The colours went well with the leftover purple linen I had (left over from another backing I had made recently). I had some pieced circles, a few more hst and various other orphan blocks and scraps in the right hues.

Kym from PQS long armed it for me. After some messaging back and forth re appropriate motifs we chose Circle Swirl which continued the circle theme into the negative space with a bit of extra added interest. I loved how it came out. I was initially a bit concerned that the extra white at the top and bottom of the quilt was too much and sat oddly but Kym's work meant it wasn't at odds with the rest of the quilt and in fact added a bubbly mix to the whole thing.

I am not 100 percent sure that the binding I chose was the best I could have gone for - not sure if the mustardy yellow was quite right but I loved the pinky flower like circle motif on it and that ties it in. Sometimes I a a bit too matchy matchy so I have been adventurous in this quilt.

I used an old circular doily for the label. Initially this was because I couldn't find the commercial labels I have stashed somewhere but then I decided I really liked the look of it. Its circular with circular flowers on it. The doily is stained but that doesn't matter to me and in fact ties in with the name. Crop Circles. Crops grow in soil so its ok that the label is soiled.

The name came from the fact that the quilt was a mystery quilt involving circles. Crop circles are also a mystery... so Crop Circles it was.


  1. Well done - love the doiley as a label. The quilting design is a great choice and compliments your border and the design perfectly. Looking forward to see it for real at next year's PnP Show and Tell.

  2. Great looking quilt!! Love the purple.