Triple Tail Plaits

When you request a custom quilt through my website, I take the information you provide and use it to craft personalized quilt designs. Depending on what you are looking for in a quilt, there’s usually a couple of ways I can go with those personalized designs – either literally or figuratively.

When Beth M. contacted me about a quilt for her daughter who loved the color purple and was very into horses, I could have sent a design with a purple horse face or purple horse blocks. Very cute, but very literal.

But she wanted something that would grow with her daughter.  So I started looking into some figurative designs. While I don’t know a lot about horses, I have, of course, heard of competitive horse shows. And I’ve seen some amazing images of horses that have braided manes and tails when showing competitively. That’s how this lovely figurative design was born.

Macpurplequilts

Using plaited horse tails as inspiration, I created three ombre braids that span the quilt from top to bottom and added a nice, wide border.  Where the pieced braids meet in the center, I monogrammed young Katherine’s initials using machine appliqué. There’s specialty quilting on the braids and an all over meander in the border, but it’s the gradation of color that makes this quilt just glow.

This ability that quilt designs have to be literal or figurative is one of the aspects of quilting that I love the most. A quilt pattern that actually looks like a horse is just as warm and whimzical as a quilt with three braids symbolizing a plaited horse tail. custom quilt from Whimzie Quiltz can be anything – it just depends on what you want.

SaveSave

Advertisements

Pink Tardis Quilt ~ It’s About Time… and Space

Order today and your pink Tardis quilt will ship in time for the 2017 Doctor Who Christmas special.

PinkTardisQuilt

I heard this morning, but it wasn’t until I was sitting in a restaurant at lunch that it really hit me.  And I started crying tears of happiness. Which made a more than a few people at Rubio’s wonder what was going on 😀

I didn’t care because I’m so freaking excited for a female Doctor!

I’ve actually seen Jodie Whittaker in Broadchurch. She’s really good.

(I am a little worried about Chris Chibnall as show runner.  Broadchurch is so slow-paced that I’m worried his style won’t translate well to Doctor Who.  On the other hand, he picked a fantastic new Doctor, so he must be doing something right!)

There’s 163 days until the Christmas special when the new Doctor will make her debut.  That’s plenty of time to have a custom pink Tardis quilt – or traditional blue Tardis quilt – made by Whimzie Quiltz.

Contact me at deidre [at] whimziequiltz.com to get yours started today!

There’s a New Hokie in Town

Our nephew graduates high school today! BIG congratulations to him and all 2017 graduates.

He’s been accepted at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, better known as Virginia Tech.  We’re sending him these fun, quilted dorm pillows so he can start college life off right…

vtechpillows

I love making these BIG pillows for recent graduates.  At 24″ x 24″, they are a great size for extra seating in a dorm, for holding a book while studying or for a friendly pillow fight.  And since they use college t-shirts, they always fit in with any dorm decor scheme.

If you know a young adult heading off to college this fall and are looking for the perfect gift, contact me for your custom set today!

SaveSave

Black and White and Warm All Over

One of my favorite things about custom quilts is when someone asks for a quilt of their favorite things.  The more, the better!

So when customer Beth M. told me her son like Boy Scouts, old movies, their beautiful tuxedo cat, English history and music – well, I knew it’d be a challenge, but I also figured we could have some fun with it.

blackwhitequilt

I was initially struck by how many of his favorite things were black and white, so I decided to make make the quilt using only those two colors. Although the overall look is high contrast, I actually chose a variety of tone-on-tone small prints or marbled fabrics in these two shades to give the quilt depth and dimension.

As for the symbolism, this quilt features

  • a Tower of London (with the six crows that legend says must live there or the monarchy will fall,)
  • a piano keyboard representing music,
  • a tuxedo cat, in between two halves of the Union Jack,
  • a strip of film, and
  • a fleur de lis from the Cub Scout logo

I filled in the remaining spots with a traditional PINWHEEL block to make the pattern feel more old fashioned and quilt-like – something Beth had mentioned she really wanted. Two thin borders, one white and one black, pull everything together.

Although the majority of the quilting is stippled, I added in some texture in spots – like the birds and the cat’s white accents – to make those areas pop even more.

Influenced by this quilt, I’ve been spending a lot of time lately thinking about how individuals are rarely defined by just one characteristic. Different likes and loves, hobbies and habits… they all come together in one person.

Like how lots of different blocks come together in one custom quilt!  Whoa! That’s some deep stuff 😀

All kidding aside, it’s made me think about a lifetime of my favorite things, and how they’ve come to make the person that is me. I think that’s a quilt I want to make, too (another for my bucket list!)

What makes you, you?  What would be in your favorite things quilt?

Is It December 1st Yet?

1qocrgCouldn’t be more excited for Christmas this year as I’m planning to decorate the Whimzie Quiltz sewing room for the holidays, too.  One of the first decorations is this sewing themed Countdown Calendar.

The impetus for this piece came from a Nancy Zieman blog post from 2015.  Instead of a quilted wallhanging, though, I decided I wanted fabric-covered canvas.  Luckily, there was just enough of the grey snowflake fabric in my stash!

I loved-loved-loved how she used a measuring tape for the numbers, but wanted mine to be one piece.  Which meant my version ended up using a 15″ x 30″ canvas from JoAnn’s.

The tree is felt, trimmed with mini pompom ribbon, and the base is machine appliquéd fabric from my stash.  Most of the buttons came from LittleRedCottage on Etsy (her button selection is AMAZING) and they are attached with those stick-on velcro dots. The loop dots are next to the measuring tape; by using the hook side on the back of the buttons they stick to the felt without any thing else needed.

The wooden spools were left over from another project years ago, but had to be cut in half in order to lay flat.  This did not go as well as expected – so glad I had safety goggles on when cutting! – but eventually I got 4 semi-identical halves.  I painted them orange and wound pink embroidery floss  around each before attaching.

I finished it off with a little white ric-rac around the edges and the sequin star – all easily glued down.

I am just super thrilled with the way it turned out!  It’s going to be the highlight of my holiday sewing room decor.  But stay tuned to see what other fun things turn up before December arrives!

A Quilter’s Christmas Carol Pillows

Let me tell you a story…

As the holidays approached way back in 2011, an idea began percolating in my head. What if the ghosts from Dickens’ A Christmas Carol didn’t visit a miserly old man; instead, what if they sought to change the heart of a overworked and very tired quilter trying to get all her quilted gifts done before December 25th? (No, nope, wasn’t projecting at all…)

The result was a little story called A Quilter’s Christmas Carol ~ With Thanks to Charles Dickens for the Holiday Inspiration.  One year later (after I, wink, wink, got caught back up) the little story got turned into a book.

As part of the book writing process, I decided to add directions for a related quilting project, the Quilter’s Christmas Carol block.

Pieced from traditional holiday colors, the Quilter’s Christmas Carol block features three flying geese moving out from the center (embodying the spirits of Christmas Past, Present and Future) while stylized “C”s in each corner represent the first letters of the classic holiday tale’s title.

christmascarolpillows

Much like Dicken’s classic, today’s story has a happy ending – six years later, I finally finished making a set of Quilter’s Christmas Carol pillows!

I want to make it very clear, I didn’t create such a difficult design that it would take the average quilter six years to make these.  Pretty sure these could be knocked out in a day with the no distractions.  But what average quilter has NO distractions? Let’s just say, being overworked and very tired is not an uncommon thing around Whimzie Quiltz and leave it at that, shall we?

Still, it’s nice to have these off my to-do list.  One less chain for poor Marley, I mean, me, to wear as quilt-y penance when the time comes!

***

PS – Copies of my book are still available online. They make great stocking stuffers or Secret Santa gifts for quilters.  Want to make them even more special? I’m happy to autograph copies!

Merry Mermaid Stockings

Can’t tell you how much we love having our nieces and nephews visit!  We see them mostly during spring breaks or summer vacations, but, because we live in Southern California, sometimes they’ll swing by during Thanksgiving and Christmas just to get a break from the cold.mural

The room the kids stay in while visiting is beach-themed, with this giant tropical mural on one wall. I’ve been mulling over Christmas decorations to go with the theme – so they can enjoy their visit to warmer climes and celebrate the holiday at the same time.

All of which led to these quilted mermaid stockings…mermaidstockings

That is sequin stretch fabric, folks.  Or should I say sequin s – t – r – e – t – c – h fabric. Not the easiest fabric to work with if you are used to 100% quilter’s cotton.  But, hey, I’ve been saying I need to s – t – r – e – t – c – h my quilting skills! 🙂

I bought a special scalloped ruler to do the quilting on my long arm, though the lines on the tails are freehanded.  That was a lot of work, so I kind of cheated on the backs – they are un-quilted fleece.  I bound everything with additional sequin stretch – extremely carefully cut – and the trim is a mix of white feathers and green gathered mesh.

I’m really looking forward to decorating the kid’s room during the holidays this year.  I’m thinking a Christmas tree with beach ball ornaments, some twinkly lights, maybe a garland in the blues and greens of the sea.  But the highlight is sure to be these merry mermaid stockings!