…Quiltmaker’s Garden that is! In our March/April ’12 issue on newsstands and at quiltandsewshop.com now, we unveiled our 30th anniversary quilt.
It’s a beauty and we just love it! QM’s editor-in-chief, June Dudley wanted something special to commemorate this milestone, so we decided to design a quilt that highlighted patterns from our past 30 years. Mind you, we work way ahead of when an issue actually arrives in your mailbox – we started this design in August 2011!
It was time to research! Each staff member has a full set of Quiltmaker issues for reference. Here’s the set that lives on my bookcase. You’d be surprised at how often we pull out old issues to look for something!
Carolyn Beam, QM’s Creative Editor, and I combed through all of the old Quiltmaker issues to gather ideas for blocks that we could include in our yet-to-be-determined design. Here is a sampling of all the blocks we marked as possibilities.
One thing became clear: we definitely had a floral theme going on! The idea of a gazebo with all of these flower blocks growing up around it was our starting point. So with a simple sketch and a collection of blocks, I set off to start designing!
First, I drew up a gazebo design and began to fill in the spaces with the blocks we’d selected, making sure everything was based on the same grid size so that blocks and patches would fit together. This is an early version with a plain background and a lot fewer flowers.
There were many versions as I continued to rearrange, re-size, add, and delete elements to get to the finished design. A lot of input from fellow staff helped along the way. Finally, I also had to be sure you could actually sew what I had drawn on the computer – minor detail, you know!
Once we had a final design, it was time to find some fabric. Carolyn and I dug into our scrap bins and sample fabrics to find just the right ones. See, our sewing room looks just as messy as yours at home!
We called upon our longtime home sewer, Peg Spradlin, who herself has been with Quiltmaker for over 20 years, to put together this quilt. She was the obvious choice given her history with us and the fact that she had sewn quite a few of the original quilts that this one was based on!
The March/April ’12 issue contains all of the materials needed, as well as instructions for the first of the five parts. We are very proud and excited about this series quilt and we hope that you enjoy sewing your own version.