The QM Scrap Squad is a select group of seven QM readers. They take one pattern from each regular issue of Quiltmaker and make their own scrappy versions to inspire you.
The featured quilt from the May/June issue is Ladder of Success, designed by quilting legend and early QM editor Judy Martin. We’re so pleased to feature Judy’s design as part of our 30th anniversary celebration.
Today’s featured quilt is from Donna Hanley in Cincinnatus, New York. You’ll hear from Donna in her own words below. Enjoy!
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When I saw this pattern, I knew I wanted to use batiks and try to move color across the quilt. I pulled out my batiks and after a little shopping (oh darn), I came up with warm and cool color palettes.
In my stash, I found a leftover piece of extra wide backing in a multicolor batik that I knew would be perfect for the focal Nine Patches and the border squares.
The first design decision I had to make was whether to run the color transition in a line across the quilt or in a cluster around the focus Nine Patches.
I finally opted for the cluster effect and I concentrated on transitioning color around each Nine Patch. After placing the Nine Patch pieces, I put up all the background blue 3″ squares and started filling in with color. Using my camera really came in handy. If a transition piece was too drastic, it jumped right out in the photo.
Unfortunately, keeping those pieces all organized was a migraine waiting to happen. Solution: having a paper plate for each color to hold the small squares and Four Patch units.
I do most of my own quilting on my Bernina. A few years ago, after developing arthritis in my base thumb joints, pin basting to layer my quilts was no longer an option. At about the same time, I saw a video on The Quilt Show by Patsy Thompson demonstrating her method of spray basting on her design wall.
This method was a lifesaver for me and now it’s the way I baste all of my quilts.
You need to be sure to protect the area around your backing with newspaper on the walls and old towels on the floor. I use 505 basting spray. One note about using this method: I keep a separate set of pins for attaching the backing to the design wall since the basting spray causes the pins to become sticky.
I quilted an overall pattern with a variegated thread.
Here is the final result:
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WOW! Can you say “gorgeous”? I just love it when the Scrap Squad gals rock our socks off! This is truly an amazing piece. More Ladder of Success quilts to come so stay tuned.