Community Quilt 38

16 12 2012

This was a big quilt, with well over 120 appliqued butterflies arranged in circles in each block. How to quilt it?

Click on a photo to view it larger.


Well, I wanted to make the butterflies ‘pop’, so I decided to do a small stipple around them, but I didn’t want the stipple to take over, so I grabbed a large bowl from the kitchen and marked a big circle. I figured I’d do something in the circle later…

After quilting around all the butterflies in all the blocks, I now had an empty circle in the middle. Well, that looked odd, so I thought maybe I could stitch a butterfly in the centre of each circle, but I needed the central butterfly to ‘pop’ too, so I went with a smaller inner circle (another kitchen bowl), then the butterfly in blue, with blue and pink in the wings (there was some pink in some of the blue fabrics), followed by more stippling around each butterfly to make it stand out.


About the centre butterfly: I could have hunted through all my books, magazines, tear-out templates from magazines etc. for a suitable butterfly outline, but I could have spent hours doing that and still not find the outline I wanted. So off to Google! I searched for butterfly outline then clicked on the Google Images link. Once I found the shape I wanted, I printed it out at the correct percentage to fit my centre (yes, I had to try a couple of % settings first!). Then I put the printout under a sheet of stiff plastic (the sort used as the outer cover of spiral- or coil-bound business reports), and marked the outline with a thin Sharpie. Then I cut out the plastic template and used a marker to go around this template in the centres. I stitched around each outline in blue, then did a very free motion design inside the wings in the same blue as well as the little banana-shaped stitches up and down the body, followed by the antenna also in the same blue. Once I’d done that, I added some free motion pink curlicues inside the free-motioned blue wing shapes. No patterns for any of that inside the butterfly — just from my head.

As all the blue sashing fabrics had a leaf motif, I stitches leaves in the sashing strips in the same blue thread as the centre butterflies.


I think it took about 8 to 12 hours to quilt this large quilt  — I did it over two days.

The back:


Threads used:

  • Top: Fil-Tec Glide (‘Cream’, colour 20001; 40 wt polyester); Floriani (blue, colour PF373; 40 wt rayon (?)); Robison-Anton (‘Pale orchid’ [pink], colour 2423; 40wt rayon)
  • Bobbin: Bobbinfil (white, 70wt)




2 responses

16 12 2012

I couldn’t believe how much work was in this quilt – dozens and dozens of applique’d butterflies! I can’t believe how much work you’ve put into it too! The central butterfly motifs are absolutely perfect to finish this quilt and I love how you’ve isolated the centres with the circle. The texture is wonderful, can’t wait to see this one bound and off to its new owner. Beautiful!

16 12 2012

Rhonda……perfect, perfect, perfect!!!!! When I first looked at this I thought the center butterfly had been done by the one piecing the quilt!!!! Awesome! Your thread and pattern choices (to say nothing of the quilting itself;-D) are gorgeous! So much fun to see your “completions”!!! Blessings……

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