quilting in circles

I was so pleased to make some progress on my Sleeping Porch dresdens this weekend!  Between my monthly installments in Penny Sampler and Facing East, plus my preoccupation with creating a new website, those dresdens had nearly stalled.  This weekend after churning out my monthly quota of two Facing East blocks (phew!), I got back to it it.

Sleeping Porch is Heather Ross' most recent fabric collection, this time on lightweight cotton lawn.  I'm using only lawns for the entire quilt top (and possibly the quilt back as well) because using the same weight fabrics improves a quilt's durability.  The colors and prints are so very, very girly and so joyful that I was inspired to make a twin-sized bed quilt.  I don't have a little girl in mind for it, but I'm certain it will find a home! 

Instead of composing the quilt top entirely of dresden blocks, I've added a swath of some lighter prints across the top and bottom edges of the quilt.   I imagine they bookend the exuberance of the quilt's center with a sort of (almost) calm.  You know, as calm as most little girls get!  Plus, those sections will show up nicely when the quilt is on a bed.

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As I plotted dresden fabrics for my background squares, it occurred to me to create a wide, unadorned swath of the yellow print as well.   Then I also decided to leave two additional squares on the quilt top dresden-less for balance.

Since I'm making this via quilt-as-you-go, I'm appliqueing the dresdens on the background and quilting them at the same time.  Although I'm tempted to leave the dresden quilting that minimal, I've started doing some additional quilting over each block to reinforce the patchwork seams.  I hope this bed quilt is used and loved, which means lots of washing when it comes to children!

The pointy-edged dresdens are being finished with straight-line echo quilting. 

To keep things tidy, I mark out my stitch path with a hera marker.  The "marker" just creates creases that wash out if you choose not to quilt them.  It's a nice way to experiment with quilting ideas without the hassle of unpicking if you change your mind.  To browse more of the tools I use every day, visit my new "Tools" page under the "Shop" menu option. 

On the rounded dresdens I've free motion quilted a circle of little dogwood flowers.  I'm smitten!  If you'd like to try something similar, see my Dogwood Quilting tutorial in the Quilting Skills section of my "Tutorials" page under the "How To's" menu option.  (Yay, I love my new website!  I hope you find it easy to use!)  Stitching dogwoods in a ring is super easy when you're doing quilt-as-you-go.  The 14" blocks are a cinch to manipulate under my machine.

Ok, I should get back to quilting flower circles.  Thanks for stopping by!

p.s. Sleeping Porch is currently available at Lark Cottons, Bobbie Lou's Fabric Factory, Gotham Quilts and Fat Quarter Shop.