I’m excited to be a part of my friends Cheryl Brickey & Paige Alexander’s blog hop for their brand new book, Modern Plus Sign Quilts!
Modern Plus Sign Quilts is published by Stash books, a division of C&T Publishing.
Not only is it a fabulous book, but it was my turn to help share the love since Cheryl has been an active participant on both of my previous book blog hops. (Check those out here and here.) And maybe the three of us just might have had a conversation at QuiltCon about them doing something fun with my next fabric line…so stay tuned for more awesome Cheryl & Paige inspiration!!
But back to their book…
I chose their pattern, Transparency Chains to work on, because I love a good Irish Chain design!! I chose to go with a modernized Americana color scheme for this quilt, because I’m sorely lacking in red/white and blue quilts for 4th of July!! (Not that I actually need to cuddle up under one in the heat, but I love to add accent colors in my home for the holidays year ’round.)
My version of Transparency Chains, made with Modern Marks fabric
So far, I’ve only completed the quilt top shown above, but now I’m really excited to quilt it and will share more about the quilting process once I get to it.
Here’s a little bit more about the process of making the quilt top. I couldn’t resist the chance to sew with my own fabric, and after making a ton of rainbow colored quilts lately, it was fun to go with a more limited palette of red, creamy yellow, and shades of blue.
I chose Modern Marks in blues, with a pop of red contrast and the light yellow boxes print for the background. It was fun to work with a limited palette rather than every color!
The instructions were well written and easy to follow. I love getting everything cut out ahead of time and I love it when a well-written pattern makes that easy to do. I especially liked not having to think about how much to cut, or do any of the math.
I love looking at a stack of yummy fabric strips that are ready to sew!
I’ve realized that I love the process of making a quilt as long as I’m not rushed. So here’s a tip: try not to “binge” sew if you can help it. I spread out the making of the top over several weeks so I never felt rushed.
I washed the fabrics one day, ironed them a different day, cut them later and then took several days to sew the individual units below. I took pics along the way and shared them in real time on instagram so I never felt rushed or bored with the project.
The stacks are starting to turn into something fun!!
Aren’t these the cutest little plus blocks ever??
At first, I was worried that the main Modern Marks print wouldn’t show well enough because the light blue pieces were so small, but I love the effect you get when you chop up an interesting overall print. It’s fun to see lots of pops of color all over the quilt!
I love pressing seams open so that the blocks will lie rally flat.
I printed off a copy of just the Transparency Chains pattern from the book so I could keep it right by my sewing machine as I sewed. I could also make notes on the printout and check off each step as I completed it. I love the feeling of accomplishment each time I sit down to sew!
I have a “big board” that I use for pressing my quilts. Once I press from the back side, I always press again from the front to keep the quilt as flat and crisp as possible.
Here’s a pressing tip: sew several of the rows together into chunks and then press the long seams before you join the two halves together. Then you only have one more seam to press once the quilt top is complete, rather than wrestling with the entire quilt for each long seam.
I’m really pleased with this combination of fabrics and love the fun geometric texture that the modern, geometric prints provide.
Alternate colorway, re-colored in EQ8
When I was figuring out which fabrics to choose, I drew up the design in Electric Quilt software and auditioned several variations. The greener version above was a very close second, but ultimately I liked the high contrast of the red chains instead.
Modern, geometric prints are definitely my favorite – and it was fun to sew with my own fabric!
Now I have to decide how to quilt it – do I go with a simple allover design, or do I highlight the plus blocks and emphasize the chain structure? Choices, choices!! What would you do?
To see the original version that Cheryl made, plus link to other bloggers who remade this quilt in other colorways, head over to her blog at Meadow Mist Designs and Paige’s blog at Quilted Blooms. While you are there, check out all of the fun giveaways that are happening, and enter for your chance to win.