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.
Today’s featured quilt is by Donna Hanley from Cincinnatus, New York.
You’ll hear from Donna in her own words below.
My first thought was to have a seashells theme. Initially, I planned to have blue strips shading from light to dark and then to brown to represent sky and sand. I quickly realized that didn’t make much sense…seashells floating through the sky? No way.
So sky fabrics became sea fabrics instead…same fabrics, just thinking of them differently in my mind. Here are my fabric choices.
I remember hearing in one class that for a landscape, the proportion should be divided 1/3 to 2/3, so I made the sea 2/3 of the backgound and the sand 1/3. My first attempt at laying out the blues in a gradation didn’t make the cut.
First I use a sharp, flat seam ripper and cut every third or fourth thread. Then I pull the uncut thread from the other side. Finally, I use a piece of tape to pick up all the leftover little threads. The seam is unsewn in no time at all.
When I received my seashell applique shapes from QM Graphic Designer Denise Starck, I was ecstatic. She drew exactly what I had in mind. Here’s the top with the shells in place.
Close-up of the quilting:
Remember to check out all of the free applique patterns for the Scrap Squad variations of Old Glory. More versions coming in the days ahead!
Donna’s quilt can help us learn something about applique placement. Look again at the original Old Glory quilt, below.
See how the stars are “sprinkled” across? They are slightly turned to and fro so they look very natural. And the line of stars is not straight across the quilt’s diagonal—instead, it meanders lazily in a kind of wave.
Placing applique patches is tricky business. Each Scrap Squad member did it a bit differently—and that’s fine, because ultimately the only person whose opinion matters is the quiltmaker’s.
Donna took our cue and turned her applique shapes to and fro also. Notice the seashell below and how it’s askew to suggest its random placement on the seashore.
This is where a design wall is critical. You’ll want to use it to audition the placement of your applique shapes. Twist, turn, sprinkle…keep playing until you’re happy with it. And then snap a photo of the finished quilt and send it to firstname.lastname@example.org.