Monday, March 21, 2022


Over the last two weeks, I've been working on an entry for the latest Curated Quilts mini challenge, not really knowing if I could make the deadline or not, and I'm here to tell you it was close! But a little window of creative time opened up, and I was able to finish and enter it with a day to spare. 

The theme of this challenge was "Utility," and we were asked to use accessible fabrics for our utilitarian mini quilt design - scraps we had on hand, treasured fabrics, or repurposed fabrics. The color palette was dictated by one fabric - Candlelight Woven in Ocean by Ruby Star Society - though we could use what we had on hand. I chose to do that rather than purchase new fabric, but did find some aqua blue Andover Textured Solids in my stash that felt like a really good match. I don't even think Andover makes this fabric anymore, but I remember liking it - obviously enough to stash a good sized piece!

For some reason, I kept imagining industrial elements, so I started out just creating some pieced components, with just a vague notion of how they might fit together. Besides the textured solid, I incorporated some metallic and natural Essex scraps, a blueish shot cotton and print that seemed to coordinate ok, and a black striped shirt I had rescued from the donate bag a while back.

I began to place the segments up on the design wall, just to envision where I might be headed, plus keeping in mind the size, as my finished quilt needed to be between 10" and 16" square. It was then that I realized I had meant to use more of the darker blue shot cotton on the right side of that curve, so I swapped that out and liked the result much better.

Finally I had a finished top AND randomly rotated it around, deciding I liked a different orientation than I'd been working on all along. Go figure!

For quilting, I used Aurifil 50wt #2805 [Light Turquoise] to quilt a grid - one direction followed a curve in the design, and the other direction was relatively vertical.

And by the way, the 'true' color of the piece is reflected best in the detail photo above, rather than the quilt photo below. Lighting.... always a challenge.

So, the finished quilt measures just 13" x 13" square. It was a bit of refreshment in an otherwise stressful and hectic month, so whether it gets accepted or not, the fabric play was definitely worth it!


  1. I really like the utility and industrial look of your little quilt. That was a perfect place to photograph it!

  2. I really like the last photograph of the mini on top of the grating. I know you are days away from your official retirement and between that and other life things, I am glad that you had the time for a bit of fabric play.

  3. I love this so much, especially the "cog" curve that looks so much like a piece of machinery. and your last photo is awesome

  4. Wow! I see suggestions of a city, a topographic map, a bridge-- there's a lot of interesting elements in that little piece! Brava!

  5. I love the arch - it just finishes the look of the quilt - well done!

  6. What a fun little piece! And the last picture fits well with your idea of "industrial pieces" :) Good luck with your submission. xo

  7. "Fabric play." You do an incredible job of that, every time you touch fabric. Your improv is always perfectly put together. I'm not a "blue person," but I definitely love the colors you selected. That bit of houndstooth is the perfect accent. And gosh, I sure wish you and I didn't live as far apart from each other as two people can be in the US! :-) I DID buy a half-yard of the Candlelight Woven, and couldn't get anyone from my MQG chapter to GIVE it to... to enter the CQ challenge. It would have been nice to hand it to you! I really hope your quilt is accepted.