I've really enjoyed the time I set aside for myself to create new designs and quilts not tied to a deadline.  One of the projects I was able to work on and complete, which is always a bonus, is my Swatches quilt!

This quilt was inspired from my oil painting days; sketches, painter palettes, paint tubes, canvases, brushes, lighting and other images both concrete and abstract.  I designed this quilt to convey a feeling more than actual objects tied to painting.

I’m finding that more and more I’m merging my first creative love, oil painting, with my current creative love in my quilt designs.  I've even started working with watercolors again mainly because the clean up is so easy. 

I chose the quilting to add interest and depth to the design. I took some risks, like black thread echos around the paint swatches and hand quilting the small grey squares. Most of the quilting is fairly dense and I was shocked when blocking the quilt to find out the length shrunk by 3”.

I reall…

This One's for Me.

The last time I made a quilt without a deadline was my Balance and Fade quilt in July.  It was also the last time I designed and created a quilt for no other purpose than the joy of the process... until now.  Here's my Stratagem quilt!

Stratagem Quilt
The inspiration for this quilt came from a Parcheesi game board and the first time I saw Parcheesi was on Christmas morning so the timing of this finish couldn't be more perfect.

My dad got my sister and I a board game a piece for Christmas one year when we were kids.  She got Parcheesi and I got Tripoley.  Upon opening the gift I was very unappreciative, teasing my dad for picking such an "uncool" gift but after a bit of persuasion we played Parcheesi and had a blast.  We eventually played Tripoley and it was a great too.

As you can see from the game board above the overall design of the quilt meant only to capture the feel of the Parcheesi board and not be a literal representation but the quilting patterns I chose come directly from the detail on the game board.  I even added circles to the middle of the dark green stripes just like the exit and entry squares.

Stratagem Quilt
Stratagem Quilt
I knew instantly what backing to use for this quilt, Anna Marie Horner's Pretty Potent Banner.  I had about 5 yards hanging out in my stash which was the perfect amount for the backing and sleeve.  (I've learned my lesson and now add a sleeve to all my quilts while attaching the binding.)

Stratagem Quilt
I love this quilt and really enjoyed making it and for once picking a name.  I knew I couldn't use "Parcheesi" but I wanted to pick a name that captured the spirit of the game so I chose Stratagem.  It took me over two months but I squeezed it in here and there between deadlines and am so happy to finally share it.

Statagem Quilt
I have another deadline coming up but for now I have a few days to just play around in my sewing room.  I don't mind deadlines because I love quilting and I love finishing projects so a good deadline gives me an excuse to make time to do what I love!

In closing, QuiltCon notifications will be coming out shortly so fingers crossed.  I've seen some of the submissions on social media and the competition is fierce, there are so many talented quilters with amazing modern quilts out there.  I can't wait to see all the QuiltCon submissions on Instagram!

"For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jer 29:11