Round and About in Paris

Having caught my breath after being in London last week, I am taking you to another city with this posting, and a very beautiful one at that - Paris.    I can finally show you this quilt, which I have been working on for quite some time.  It is a gift for our Niece on her 18th Birthday and now that it has been safely delivered I can post some pics.   The brief was, Paris themed with pale green/turquoise.   The fabrics were easy to select.  I chose the backing first.  This may seem a little unusual, but the more quilts I make, the more I am sure that the backing is a key piece of the jigsaw.   Beautiful and bold backings really make the whole project just fantastic and in this case, allowed me to set the Paris theme and the colour way.   The backing fabric I have is by Michael Miller and is called 'Springtime in Paris' .  It is just perfect for a young lady of 18 and has lots of pretty colours in to work with for the patchwork.

Francesca's Quilt Finished.JPG

I ummmmmed and arrrrghed for quite a while over what to do for the quilt top.   Eventually I decided upon a pattern that allowed me to add just a little dash of Paris into it.  Round and Round by Camille Roskelley is a really pretty design.  I have seen it used on the internet for memory quilts where photographs are placed in the middle of the circlets.   I decided I could make street signs to give it just a hint of the city.   So having made the choice, I set about collecting fabrics to coordinate with the backing.  I used a real mixture...some liberty....some figtree....some dots.....some text print.....even some tiny pieces of vintage Laura Ashley.

 The design is quite an easy pattern to make.  Lots of half square triangles, carefully placed in order to create the whirling circles.   The blocks are enormous, so the quilt grows reasonably quickly, but you need to take care to get everything in the right order.  I was concerned that it had alot of white space and I know this can be beautiful when it is quilted, but in the construction stages it looks stark and uninteresting.   

Round and Round Quilt.JPG

I added the name tags for landmarks in Paris.  I made these on my Janome machine using the monogramming function.  I was pleased with the result.

Paris Labels.JPG

I still wasn't convinced, but as usual....once I had layered the quilt and started quilting, all was well.  I am always astonished by this process - it is magical.  The free motion quilting just whips it all up into something utterly wonderful.

Francesca's Quilt 4.JPG

For the binding, I wanted to use up all the bits of fabric that I had cut into. I never used to be that keen on scrappy bindings as I always regarded the binding as a sort of picture frame for the quilt.  I used it on my magic stars quilt which was really a scrappy affair and was dumbstruck with the effect - it is everything that patchwork is about.    I stuck with the minty green fabrics and once sewn up, I knew it was going to be super pretty.

Quilt Binding.JPG

For the finishing touch I made a handmade label to mark the occasion:

Personalising a quilt.JPG

So when it was all done.....

I had a hard time letting it I sneaked a photo, just to remind me....

Quilts like these, which take months of work are 'forever' gifts.  I hope our niece thinks so too.

See you next time,

Paris Quilt.JPG

Ruby x