Wednesday, February 14, 2024

Golden Honey

After finishing the big liturgical quilt project and last year's guild BOM quilt, I really needed a small quilt project. Something improv. Maybe even scrappy. Meet Golden Honey.

It all started when I dug through my yellow/orange scrap bucket the other day, one of Gwen Marston's books - Minimal Quiltmaking - open beside me. I was being inspired by a striped quilt therein, and randomly began to piece scrap strips together. Unfortunately, I didn't think to get a photo of them, but when I came back to the strip sets a couple of days later, it wasn't the striped quilt in the book that was speaking to me, but the one on the facing page, Untitled #2. That particular quilt had resulted when Gwen was inspired by a Paul Klee painting, Fire in the Evening. Anyway, here's how my strip sets initially came together, with more additions from the scrap bucket, and a few strips of Kona Emerald, which I chose after a glance at my color wheel.

There was something I wasn't happy with though, so I sliced across the upper third, fiddled with things a bit, and ended up with this.

Did I absolutely love it? No. But I did love that it was becoming something I hadn't really planned, a "sketch" inspired by something Gwen had made, improv, and scrappy. That all made it A-OK and worth continuing on.

So I found a partial fat-quarter that coordinated fairly well for the backing, chose some thread - Aurifil 50wt 2214 [Golden Honey] (thus the name) - and started in on some easygoing quilting, both straight-line, and wavy.

For binding, I didn't think too hard, reaching back into the scrap basket to find just enough of RSS Melody Miller's Spark in a bright yellow.

This piece finished at 10.75" x 15", and I want to make note that I used Hobbs Tuscany Supreme 100% Cotton batting. I have a stack of Hobbs sample sizes that are perfect for small projects such as this, so I'm going to try a few out. This one felt pretty luxurious.

Anyway, this was just what I needed, creatively speaking. I think I might just dive into another small improv, scrappy piece soon. What I felt in making this one, I want to hang on to for a while.


  1. That is a super 'sketch' indeed! I love it, 'play time at the sewing machine!'
    Thank you for sharing your inspiring thoughts and Golden Honey. Hey! I just had honey and cream in my espresso this morning, share the goodness, right?
    Happy Valentines' Day too.

  2. I love the satisfaction that comes from smaller makes, and it sounds like this one was just what you needed. I like that you left the Kona Emerald unquilted, and while you maybe think too hard on the binding, that bright yellow is the perfect frame!

  3. How fun! And I like the emerald pieces in it. Especially after Yvonne pointed out that you choose not to quilt them... You always think of those details :) xo

  4. When I saw the size, I thought that would make a beautiful set of similar place mats! I might have to try that. Thanks for the inspiration.

  5. There's just something satisfying about a little improv play. It reminds me of when I was a kid in art class, playing with construction paper, glue, scissors and crayons. Nice finish to your little play - on to the next!

  6. Love, love, love! It's so good to know what inspires you, and how to you're motivated to play with fabric. I sure can understand that desire, after working so hard on those liturgical hangings. I appreciate that you shared your process - what inspired you, what you thought as you began piecing, and how you cut and changed it to make it "just so." It's always a fascinating process because quiltmakers have different approaches.

  7. Thanks for sharing the details of the evolution of this charming mini quilt. I get hung up on fabrics-touching or in close proximity. I was going through a stack of magazine tear-outs and found an article by Gwen on minimalist quilting. I checked the shelf and I have the book. You're giving me an idea....