Monday, February 15, 2010


Jitterbug is the name of this contemporary style quilt from Debbie Bowle's book Dancing Quilts. The quilt was pieced by three friends who made it as a wedding gift for another friend. I quilted it and attached a scrappy binding.

Made entirely of batiks, they worked a beautiful color scheme around this design. According to one of the piecers, the quilt was very easy to construct; however, the tricky part was choosing the right fabric and then placing the blocks to show a semblance of order in the all-over design.

After discussing quilting options, we decided on an edge-to-edge angled design as shown here. It greatly enhanced the geometric design of the quilt. It's very easy to quilt this type of design. Quilt a short straight line, stop, then quilt in another direction to create the angle. Finger trace these close up shots to get the idea and try drawing this design on paper.

I used Superior Thread's King Tut for the quilting and changed color to blend in with the fabric. Batiks have a higher thread count so the fabric remains fairly taut while quilting. The backing was a heavy green felted fabric (I called it billard cloth, but it's not really that heavy!) I used a 40 wt. YLI brand cotton thread in the bobbin.

The border of the quilt was pieced from random pieces matching the color of the blocks and I pieced the binding to match each print along the edge. It turned out so well! Especially with a batik, you can just match the color, not necessarily use the same print and it will frame the quilt nicely, not distracting your eye away from the design of the quilt. The binding does need to be pieced-as-you-go with straight seams to join (not diagonal) but it's just a little extra effort that makes a big impact for the finished look.

Copyright ©2010, Sharon Baggs

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