Bali Fever

Hi - welcome to my first ever blog post!  Hmmm....what to about my latest quilt?  I just completed a custom quilt for a friend of mine.  She makes the most beautiful quilts, and LOVES paper piecing.  This one was a quiltworx pattern by Judy Niemeyer called "Bali Fever", and even had a piece of fabric in the quilt that was autographed by Judy herself! So, without further ado, here's the quilt:

This being my first Judy Niemeyer quilt (and knowing it was going in a show!) made me do LOTS of pondering on design ideas.  But, that's the fun part, right?  My sweet husband surprised me last week with an iPad Pro and the apple pencil (he's definitely a keeper!!) which I absolutely LOVE!!  I like to take pictures of the quilts I'm getting ready to work on, then draw on them using the Procreate app.  That way I can see how it's all going to look, and get an overall perspective of the quilt, before I start.  And, I can also send my drawings directly to my clients via email so they can see it too!  I could spend hours doodling on quilt photos :) But, back to the, on this one, I knew I wanted to emphasize the circles, and I liked the lines of the piecing in the border, but couldn't figure out what to do behind the first I thought maybe some all over fill so the circles would pop out, but I just couldn't get settled on that.  So I started stitching all the circles because I knew I wanted to do the feather fill in one, and emphasize the spikes of the other.  Once I got that done, I went back to pondering and it hit me to bring out the individual squares instead.  So I just did a 1" echo on the inside of each square block to "frame" them, and filled around with pebbles.  I really love how it turned out!  So glad I didn't do that all over fill...ha!

 The border I just kept simple, with stitching in the ditch and a 1/4" echo on each strip.  

Then for the inner border, I did a simple swirl, but at the end, I didn't like how it looked.  It left too much open space (see above).  So, I went back and did an echo line, tucking it in to the center part of the swirl and then echoing over the tail on each side of the swirl (see new & improved below).  It was just right, and a very easy fix (no picking!!  Hooray!) 

I used double batting, a layer of Hobbs 80/20 on the bottom, and a layer of Hobbs Tuscany Wool on top.  I just love their wool!  It's so fluffy and nice.  And the double batting just really makes the quilting stand out.  I used Superior Threads Mono-Poly thread on top, that way I didn't have to change thread colors a hundred times, but it still allows the piecing to shine through!  (Added bonus - it hides imperfections really well) Now it is all finished, and I have to say I'm feeling pretty proud :) Here's a few more pictures...since I took a bunch...ha!

This is the fabric with Judy's autograph!  This block is different...truth be told, this was my original design idea for the looked great on my iPad, but then when I started stitching it out, I didn't like it because the circle is closer to the edge of the block in some areas than others.  This made the area with pebbles different, etc. and apparently I really like symmetry.  So, after I did the corners and didn't like it, my hubby gave me the brilliant plan to leave that block different because it has the autograph!  (See, I told you he was a keeper!) I loved that idea because it draws the eye to the one "different" block and makes you study it and wonder why it's different!  And let's be honest, I also loved it because I didn't have to rip it out!!  :) 

Here's the back - always fun to see:

And I just thought this picture was pretty :)

Thanks for reading!