Sunday, November 15, 2009

Team Project

I need some advice.

 Help!: WIP-Zoe's Jungle Quilt

The asking for help part is towards the bottom of the post, but here's some back story. Jon and I have been busy this weekend working together on a quilt for his new niece, Zoe. She was born October 14th, but we're going to meet her for the first time at Thanksgiving. We've been planning this quilt for a while (wow, was that post really in June??) and of course a deadline will get anything finished!

WIP-Zoe's Jungle Quilt

We picked out the fabric together last weekend, which was fun since I don't think we've ever done that before. He's had a lot of fun tracing and cutting the appliques and figuring out the placement of the fabrics.

WIP-Zoe's Jungle Quilt

I also had him sew all the nine-patches since straight lines aren't too bad. He's used the sewing machine once before to make pillows and I think the nine patches came out pretty well considering he's never done it before. I did the appliques, but he cut most of the shapes which was really helpful.

Help!: WIP-Zoe's Jungle Quilt

What do I do now?

Orange Da Dot binding (right) or Blue Prints Charming (left)?

What color thread do I use for quilting since there are so many colors? I have no idea how to pick thread colors, so any advice on how you do it is much appreciated.

How should I quilt it? I don't think I want to quilt over the faces (I don't need to, do I?), but I'm pretty open about what to do with the rest of it.

I could stipple, but I was also thinking about swirls and/or leaves or something... any ideas? It's not very big (only about 35" x 35") so I'm willing to be adventurous. Let me know what you think!


  1. What a cute top! I love the applique and I'm impressed with the 9-patches given that Jon's only used the sewing machine twice!

    My binding vote is going on the orange dots! I think they're bright and cheerful whereas the blue print makes the top more subdued.

    As for the quilting, I have absolutely no idea, sorry! I tend to pick colours that match the top, but that's only worked because I've outline quilted everything so it's easy to pick a colour that blends into the fabric being outlined. Picking something to work over a variety fabrics is much harder. Hmmm, I think I'll have to pop back and read the tips from the wiser people who will follow this comment!

  2. I love it. That giraffe is too cute. I vote for the orange binding. LOVE it.

    I think swirls would be cool for the quilting. I really don't know about the color.

  3. Wonderful job! Not sure about being an expert but I'd recommend the blue dots. Then with invisible thread I'd baste the outside edges then stitch in the ditch for the large 9 patch blocks. This stabalizes the quilt so you can do some in the ditch for the applique blocks. Definitely the outside and a bit on the faces. If you are nervous use the invisible also to do a spiral in the 5 smaller 9 patches. If confident use a bold colour (to match binding) or my favorite, a varigated thread. You could also consider some nice circles, echoing out from the smallest centre patch. But there are less stops and starts with the spiral. Remember to lengthen the stitch length and loosen the tension for the invisible. Your face pieces are fairly large so I'd stick with a large scale quilt pattern. Again, nice job!

  4. Kris, this is SO cute and I love that Jon helped! When you give it, you should include a print out of your blog posts so the family would have the story of it for their baby book.

    I vote for orange and a variegated thread. Or how about orange for the binding and blue for the thread so that you have a good balance of those colors?

  5. I too am really liking the orange dot fabric for the binding! I'm also loving that Jon helped so much in making it. =-)
    As for the quilting, my best advice would be to send you to

    Leah Day (in NC) has a *wonderful* site, and you could ask her advice about the quilting.
    She has *excellent* videos of alllll sorts of quilting designs, plus lots of other great advice and learning-stuff.
    Check her out!

  6. I would use a primary color varigated thread (I use YLI) in the nine-patches. You could use matching threads to ditch-quilt the faces. It's super cute! ~ Jennie

  7. oooh i am thinking a neutral thread...and the orange binding!! it is really adorable and i love that your husband got right in there and took part in the whole entire creative process. he looks like he is really into it

  8. What fun! And those nine-patches look great!

    I would go with the orange for sure, and you should try the invisible thread for the quilting. (Use a coupon, it was expensive!) It was much easier to use than I had expected - I even did a regular white onthe bobbin for my back. Just test-quilt a scrap for tension settings.

    As for pattern - no help there. I would go with my stipple standard, and quilt right up to the edges of the animals. I would probably also do some free form swirls in the lion mane, giraffe spots, tiger stripes...stuff like that.

  9. I'd say orange dots, hands down on the binding.

    As for quilting, I use a variegated (YLI I think) thread in bright primary colors for quilts like this. Either swirls on the colored nine-patches, or do a straight stitch quilting to accent the squares like Rita at Red Pepper Quilts does.

    That's my two cents worth. Way to go getting your guy involved!

  10. Orange dots for binding.

    And for quilting, I would outline the applique pieces to a) give them a bit more stay-puttedness and b) make them pop. You could even do this is a black as opposed to invisible thread to make them look like drawings. Then I would stipple for the rest of it. It is such a busy/vibrant quilt that any fancy quilting will likely get lost. And personally, I think grid quilting in this case will actually detract from the applique. If you stipple, I would also go with the recommendations for a variagated.

  11. Super cute! You both did a great job-- and it is so cool that you did it together.

    I'm a fan of the orange dots... they just seem more vibrant and happy than the blue.

    As for quilting thread color, I'd probably use an off-white thread or a fun variegated. I saw a suggestion for invisible thread, and I would definitely recommend against that for a baby quilt meant to be used. Invisible threads are usually nylon, which often has a lot of stretch before breaking. So, over time or if pulled, it may loop up and catch little fingers (ouch!!).

    Regarding quilting, I guess it would depend on the batting. If it allows you to quilt 8-10" apart, and the faces are smaller than that, then I would just outline the faces and stipple around them. If not, rather than stippling over them, I would instead try and do some detail quilting-- like maybe outlining the features (and I would use a matching thread for that).

    No matter what you decide, I don't think you can go wrong with this one ... it has serious cuteness on its side! :)

  12. I vote orange binding. I'd do a simple quilting, maybe stitch in the ditch on the 9 patches, and maybe just outline the faces like you were tracing the pictures.

  13. My vote is for the orange dot for binding and variegated thread for the quilting. You could do swirls or just cross hatch the nine patch. I would not use invisible thread or stitch in the ditch. I think some pretty quilting would add rather than detract -- and you don't want to quilt over those adorable animal faces. Great job, you two :).

  14. What a fun project for the two of you! I'm for the orange polka dot and varigated thread. I'd do quilting on the appliques to keep them from looking too puffy- stitch in the ditch, and some interior details too. The rest would look cute with large loops- I think loops look happy!


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