Hidden Treasure, Behind the Design

We planned to have a focus on pieced borders in our March/April ’12 issue. To me, pieced borders add a lot of interest to a quilt, and I wanted to design a quilt for this issue. Here’s my “Hidden Treasure.” The fabric is Imperial Pheasant by Eleanor Grosch for FreeSpirit.

TreasureQuilt flat 254x300 Hidden Treasure, Behind the Design

Hidden Treasure

I combed through my block books looking for just the right block to work with and chose Broken Window from Maggie Malone’s 5,500 Quilt Block Designs.

originalblock1 Hidden Treasure, Behind the Design

Broken Window

I changed the seamlines in this block to make it easier to sew.

hiddentreasureblock1 Hidden Treasure, Behind the Design

Hidden Treasure block

I’m usually drawn to blocks with stars, but for some reason, this block just caught my eye. Maybe I could see the secondary design that would be formed when the blocks were sewn together were stars!

TreasureQuilt block 300x264 Hidden Treasure, Behind the Design

Hidden Treasure block in quilt

When planning my borders, the first thing I look at are the different shapes in the block. Is there something that I could duplicate for a border? With this block, there were several things. First of all, I saw the stars at the block intersections. To me, it was obvious to start with a border that completed the stars.

The other shapes that I saw in the blocks were the Flying Geese and the Four Patches where the blocks intersected. Those 2 shapes make up the remaining borders.

TreasureQuilt geese2 300x264 Hidden Treasure, Behind the Design

Flying Geese in block and border

TreasureQuilt fourpatch2 300x264 Hidden Treasure, Behind the Design

Four Patches at block intersection and border

I really like how the colors and design pop against the white background. Once I had the top pieced and ready to quilt, the next decision was what color thread to use for quilting. I was worried that using teal or green thread that matched the fabric would be too harsh on the white and also that white thread wouldn’t work on the darker fabrics. When I auditioned different thread colors, I found that pale green was perfect—it was light enough to not be distracting on the white patches but also blended in nicely with the darker fabrics.

IMG 28021 300x200 Hidden Treasure, Behind the Design

close-up of the quilting

The thread is Pistachio Pudding from Quilter’s Choice by Golden Threads.

This was my first solo adventure using our HQ 18 Avante from Handi Quilter, and boy, was it fun! I could quilt at my own speed, and the HQ kept pace with me. I chose an all-over quilting design that was pretty forgiving and love the results!

Kits are available for a limited time for Hidden Treasure at quiltandsewshop.com.

About Carolyn

I'm the Creative Editor for Quiltmaker magazine. I've been quilting for almost 30 years. I'm an avid quilter, but I also enjoy scrapbooking, knitting, reading, and hanging out with friends and family.
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12 Responses to Hidden Treasure, Behind the Design

  1. Joanie says:

    This is a wonderful quilt. I love the color choice and I appreciate your showing how you got your ideas for the borders. Thank you!

  2. We have a home in Florida, this is a Florida quilt. I’ve always loved aqua/lime colors. This design caught my eye instantly. I have 2 friends that are making this quilt besides me. Thanks for designing this.

  3. MarciaW says:

    The way you transformed the block layout to make this quilt is very creative. Fantastic quilt!

  4. Claudia says:

    PS. And to have your own HQ to quilt it yourself…. heaven.

  5. Claudia says:

    I’ve loved this color scheme for a long time. My room used to be an aqua that changed from aqua to green depending on the light. One time I see stars, another pointed X’s, another square in a square–I love quilts that keep the eye moving and looking for something more. The pale green thread is lovely too. I would love to see this close up and explore further. Very nice and pleasant to look at. I’ve seen the pix in the mag and had the same feeling. Good job.

  6. Karlene says:

    Really do like this quilt!

  7. Anne C. says:

    Magnificent job! You made perfect choices all around.

  8. Nicole says:

    I saw this quilt in the magazine and immediately decided that I have to make it! I even have enough fabric in my stash to do so…now to just find some TIME! :D Great job on the design, I absolutely love it! I had the similar issue with thread on a quilt that is on the racks right now, pale green is a very good neutral choice :D

  9. Norma says:

    it is very lovely. I love the borders you chose

  10. Barb J says:

    Lately, I have been growing tired throwing a hunk of fabric on the edges and calling it a border. This edition is just what I needed!

  11. kwiltnkats says:

    Wow Carolyn your quilt is lovely. The borders are terrific and your decision on the pale green thread was just perfect. Anxious to see the magazine and other border possibilities. Sandi

  12. kaholly says:

    How delightfully cool looking. I’m not a blue person, but I am loving this!!

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