Sunday, March 19, 2023

Heart X0XO ---A Challenge

Scraps collected
Last August, the Clark County Quilters guild newsletter shared the challenge rules for "Put A Heart On It." In a nutshell, we were to make a quilt that was about 20 inches on each side. The quilt had to contain a heart. I'd wanted to make another heart quilt so I looked through my pattern collection and decided on a project that used 2 1/2 inch squares. XOXO is a free pattern by Robin Pickens

I had some black squares that I've petted for a long time. It was time to stitch them into a project. Next, I checked my red strips for "possible candidates." Finally, I picked a few pink scraps for the project.

The top before embellishment
I realized that I could make the whole project entirely from scraps. I even pieced the back from my scraps! One of the fabrics had been in my stash for years. I loved the print, I just hadn't found a project in which to use it. In my description for the project, I wrote that no yardage was harmed in making the project! 

After I had cut the fabrics, I began laying out the squares following the pattern design. The background was flat.  My middle granddaughter was over for a visit so I asked for her help. Miss J immediately showed me a solution. . .she flipped one particular fabric to the wrong side. 

Thread, rulers and quilting design
While she did it, she reminded me that I had purchased both sides so I could choose which side I wanted to show. (I had to chuckle hearing her share my words back to me!) She was right. The smoky, bluish grey fabrics are the wrong side of the fabric. The change improved the project.

Pieced back
Once I had the fabrics on the design wall, I began stitching the design. Miss J questioned why I was following the pattern. She asked me why I didn't offset the heart. I told her that was a good question. 

We arranged the squares to represent that layout to see what we thought. She was right. Although, because I planned a dark binding, I added one row of blocks so that the binding didn't encroach on the pink X.

We talked about quilting designs. Miss J suggested circles that blended into the background. I used a couple quilting templates to stitch circles. Of course, I stitched in the ditch first!

Then Miss J thought I needed to add a word in the background space. She couldn't put her finger on the reason; but, I could. Adding an element would make the project have three elements. Odd numbers are more pleasing to the eye.

She suggested adding a word. I wrote "Love" in several fonts.  She liked the word and picked one of the fonts. 

Miss J commented that the word would pop if I wrote with "string." I had some red perle cotton that I purchased to tie quilts close to forty years ago. She liked the weight of the thread. 

After I had auditioned the word, Miss J let me know
I needed to add a heart with thread. I added a heart. Miss J had the best ideas!

I couched the string into position. Couching was a little tricky but it wasn't impossible. I machine stitched a scrap of black binding in place. It was in my friend Martha's string scraps. 

To finish the project, I added the label and the sleeve. The quilt hung at the guild quilt show at the end of October. I'll enjoy it for a time before I gift it. Since Miss J provided so much input on this project, the wall hanging will be hers. . .if she wants it! 

Finished front

I used 2 yards from my stash. With this finish, I used 63 and 3/4 yards of stash for 2022. I would have published this post in 2022; but for a time I wasn't able to spend much time on electronic devices. 

It is truly a scrap quilt so I'm linking to Cynthia at Oh Scrap/Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework.

Publishing this post was goal number nine on my March list.


LIttle Penguin Quilts said...

That is a fun finish, Terry! The suggestions from Miss J were spot on, too. I don't often think to use the back side of the fabric, but I should keep that in mind. I bet it was fun to see all the different entries in the challenge!

Jill at emeraldcottage said...

Your put a heart in it quilt is fabulous! And I LOVE that you made it all from scraps, how satisfying is that!

The Joyful Quilter said...

Super cute challenge quilt! Sounds like you may have a future quilt designer on your hands, Terry. Miss J had some fabulous insights and ideas to share!

Bonnie said...

Terry -- You and Miss J did a great job on your challenge piece. I really like all the extra creative things you added. Kudos to both of you.

Rebecca Grace said...

What a cute project, Terry!