The Island Batik Challenge for July was to draw ideas for Christmas in July. Initially I started the project with stockings, then it just morphed into a wall hanging instead.
This article is sponsored by Island Batik and industry partners: AccuQuilt, Hobbs Batting, Schmetz Needles and Aurifil Thread. Island Batik is a US based manufacturer, importer and distributor of cotton batik, rayon batik and hand-printed cotton from Indonesia.
Fabric and Dies
For the wreath I used EQ8 to draw the design for paper piecing. There may have also been a Christmas Tree and Star but you wont see them in the finish.
The wreath needed a border so I pulled out the flowers and stems dies I have from AccuQuilt. This challenge provided the opportunity to play with a flower corner design for the Tree of Life quilt.
Whats great about the applique dies, cut your fabric and apply your fusible then run through the die for clean raw edge applique. You can then run a zigzag or straight stitch to secure or decorate the shapes. If you prefer needle turn applique cut your template paper using the die and applique as usual.
Background fabric is Island Batik solid gray which is one of my favorites. All other fabric is from an older collection including the Foundations line.
Wreath and Cardinals
The cardinals were also drawn in EQ8 for paper piecing. I chose to add them because sometimes they are the only color in the landscape during the long midwest winters.
Not all cardinals are red, in fact only the male is red. Moonstone from the Island Batik Foundations collection supplied the various colors for the female cardinal. Not exact but even mother nature surprises us sometimes.
Instead of a tree limb they are perched on flowers.
EQ8 has a nice applique bow that I used to brighten the wreath.
Almost complete. Of course I used matching thread from Aurifil to sew the appliques down and to piece everything together. Schmetz Non Stick needles are great if you are using a fusible, also if you are not.
Aurifil longarm thread for quilting. At this point (above) I realized I messed up big time. The border was supposed to have feathers to match the other three but there were too many stitches involved for unpicking.
I love the richness of the IB greens and reds and how they compliment each other in this piece.
Hot off the frame with many threads to bury and anxiously awaiting the batting to fluff back out. Not sure of the batting brand, it was a couple large scraps I had that were not put back in its bag.
I think I will go back to add some stitching in the wreath and detail in the appliques.
Loki posing for his first quilt photo. At 8 weeks old he knows what sit means, so hard to believe he sat long enough to have his photo taken. Maybe he will grow to love the camera as Enzo did and come running when a quilt hits the floor instead of being coaxed.
Thank you Island Batik, Aurifil Thread, Schmetz Needles and Accuquilt. Also, thank you to my readers and followers for your support.
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