Friday, April 3, 2015

Twin House Quilts

Once upon a time Debbie Grifka of Esch Quilts posted a Moda Bake Shop tutorial for this quilt:

It's called Neighborhood Charm and is such a great modern baby quilt. I love the bold graphic design and the movement of the negative space.

Some time later,  both my parents and my sister Michelle were moving. And while moving is a common occurrence in my life, the rest of my family is fairly stationary so it was kind of a big deal. Since I was far away in Turkey and couldn't help with the packing/unpacking or the extensive remodel that my sister's new house required, I decided to turn this cute baby quilt into two twin-size matching quilts (doesn't that make them twin twins?).

My graph paper and I got to work extending Debbie's little neighborhood of houses into a whole suburb.  And then armed with a handful of Moda's Juggling Summer charm packs, I started building houses.

Putting the white corners on each charm results in some waste triangles. But with an extra seam I found I could create tiny one inch HSTs which I pieced together to make a border.
And after making rows and rows and rows of houses with carefully spaced empty lot white squares -
I got them both put together. They are identical except for the color of border and what I quilted in the empty squares. My sister's had a deep purple border and I stitched a picket fence and flowers in the empty space.
My parents' had a rust red border and I quilted trees into those blank spaces. I don't have as detailed a picture of that one but hopefully you can see them well enough here:
Hmm... hard to see because this shot was taken after a washing but I tried several different types of trees.

Here's Helga (my Viking) quilting away on Michelle's:

I waited until our family reunion instead of sending them in the mail just because I wanted to see them open them. (That is pretty much the best part of giving away a quilt, right?)  So here are the twin twins:

For the backs I used some wonderful Turkish fabric I had picked up in my final fabric shopping spree. Turkish fabric is 90 inches wide and makes amazing backing. Right before I left I found several fabrics with English text on them.
The text is more visible in these label shots:

I used some pre-printed quilt labels I had ordered and just a raw edge applique before quilting. I'm not super happy with the result and in the future will attach a finished edge label after quilting.  My sister's is called, "Keep Calm and Re-model On," and my parents' is "Hearth and Home."

I have never made the same quilt twice. And I'm not sure I will again but I'm glad I did it this way - both at the same time. And that I quilted both the negative space and the borders uniquely for each quilt.

After our fun family reunion, both quilts went home to their new houses - to live happily ever after.


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