“Blue Daze” Finished!

by Nicole

Yesterday, I finished this improv log cabin quilt that I’ve been working on for the past couple of weeks. It will be the sample for an upcoming Spoonflower class.

Blue Daze

I’m calling this one “Blue Daze” after the Happy Daze quilt I made a while ago. Turns out that there is a flower called Blue Daze, and it looks a lot like the flowers from the one print fabric that I stitched into the quilt.

Blue Daze_Flower

I decided to go with a blue monochromatic color scheme for the quilt. I had to fight the temptation not to stitch in an orange log here and there.

I did make the whole back orange though to satisfy my orange craving. I love the look of the white dots on the orange background against the straight lines of the blue logs.

Blue Daze_Back

After auditioning blue and gray threads, I decided to go with the gray thread. I loved how the blue thread looked against all the logs except the white logs. For this reason, I went with the gray. It turns out that I’m not alone in choosing gray thread for quilting. I didn’t realize until all the comments on this post that gray was such a popular thread color choice among quilters!

Blue Daze_Thread

I did most of the quilting of Blue Daze on my long arm, stitching a meandering loop all over the quilt except for the center log.

Blue Daze_Machine

Once I finished the main quilting, I moved over to my sewing machine to finish up the center logs with wishbones and back and forth stitching. I find that quilting the detailed, tiny designs was much easier on my sewing machine than on my long arm.

Blue Daze_Wishbone

As for my little experiment with prewashing the batting, I won’t know the final outcome until I wash the quilt. Since this quilt will be a class sample, I don’t plan on washing it right away. But when I do, I will let you know how it goes. I see myself starting to prewash my batting from now on. It didn’t take that long and I like knowing that I’ve avoided potential discoloration from the cotton seeds by prewashing. Here’s what Jennifer said about the reason for the brown water:

The brown water is from the seeds in the batting. Cotton seeds are oily and the seeds give off a brown coloring…if there are lots of seeds in the cotton and you dry it in a high heat, they can also explode and leave brown coloring everywhere. It’s a part of the refining process that makes the difference in battings, as well as the quality of the cotton used. The batting I use removes as many seeds as possible so that this discoloration doesn’t take place.

Thanks for explaining that Jennifer!

It’s been a while since I made an improv log cabin quilt and it was fun cutting and sewing without worrying about measurements. If you’ve never tried making an improv log cabin quilt, I encourage you to give it a go. I’ve written a tutorial that walks you through the process. It can be a liberating experience.
Blue Daze_back and forth

I’m looking forward to sharing Blue Daze with my class!

Blue Daze finishes at 50″ by 60.”

Linking up to Thank Goodness It’s Finished Friday! and Crazy Mom Quilts.

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goosefairy March 29, 2013 - 1:44 pm

Well, its good to know the reason behind the brown water from the pre-wash. I always use wool batting so it shouldn't be a problem as I really like the look from washing the quilt without pre-washing (and potentially shrinking) the batting.

I also just love the way your quilts have such movement to them and particularly love the blue one with the orange back. Nicely done.

M-R Charbonneau March 29, 2013 - 1:46 pm

It's beautiful, Nicole! It looks like you are having fun with your long-arm! I hadn't heard anything about the cotton seeds before — Thanks for the info!

Foster March 29, 2013 - 2:49 pm

This is absolutely beautiful!

Debbie March 29, 2013 - 3:39 pm

Just darling and I love your mix of quilting – I need to be more thoughtful about that. And RE: the batt – not sure what brand you get, but do they have a 'white' one to choose from?

ipatchandquilt March 29, 2013 - 4:40 pm

This is gorgeous. The colours are so calming!

Brenna March 29, 2013 - 4:42 pm

I love how you snuck that one print in there. Beautiful quilt!

Megan March 29, 2013 - 6:07 pm

I love all those blues – some of my very favourite colours. I'm sure the people attending your class will feel totally inspired.

ashacpatel March 29, 2013 - 6:08 pm

Love it, Nicole! And the orange backing is such a fun touch!

Ellie Q March 29, 2013 - 6:38 pm

Beautiful! Makes me want to make a one-hue quilt. And when you say that it's fun to cut and sew without worrying about measuring, I totally agree! The tough part is then moving on to sew a pattern where measuring is key! 🙂

Zosia Samosia March 29, 2013 - 7:07 pm

piękne pikowanie!

regan March 29, 2013 - 7:44 pm

This quilt is so gorgeous! I love the tones and the wondkiness…..so fun! And thanks for the link to your tutorial…..I'm gonna do it! I remember the top of your sewing machine cover (I think it was!) that was in greys and orange, and a long rectangular block! LOVED IT! I think I'll try a whole quilt in that! Of course, with orange as the main color…..cuz I just love me some orange in everything! :o)

Annabella March 29, 2013 - 8:13 pm

Okay I'm going to get some grey thread and finish off my Union flag quilt which has blue improv log cabins on the back. Blue Daze is stunning.

Katy Cameron March 29, 2013 - 10:25 pm

Glad you finally came to a thread conclusion, it looks great :o)

Ella March 29, 2013 - 11:27 pm

Just out of curiosity, what kind of batting did you use?

Deborah March 30, 2013 - 12:10 am

I love blue – what a great quilt!

Rachel March 30, 2013 - 2:11 am

This quilt is awesome on so many levels! Love the color, love the block, love the improv, love the quilting!

karen March 30, 2013 - 7:22 am

That looks like some fun improv work Nicole. Looks like you had fun with your longarm too!

pandchintz March 30, 2013 - 8:03 am

Love that orange backing! Quilt looks great.

Lynne March 30, 2013 - 9:06 am

Your quilt is gorgeous. Thanks for your explanations about cotton quilt batting.

Ginny March 30, 2013 - 11:06 am

Great finish! Love the orange polka dots on the back as a contrast to the lovely blues. Interesting about the batting. Never had that happen although I know the little brown specs in the bat were part of the seeds.

factotum-of-arts.com March 30, 2013 - 4:08 pm

I love the blues and the orange backing 🙂 Great contrast.

Paige March 30, 2013 - 4:25 pm

Great, great colors in this one!

Pennie March 30, 2013 - 10:36 pm

It's fab – would make a great 'macho' quilt, and I bet it would be great made in denim. Love the orange backing, and also a big fan grey for quilting.

Denise March 31, 2013 - 1:37 am

Very nice work! I love the color choice: top with varied blues and the orange backing–a soothing and cheerful combination. The quilting is beautiful also.

Gemini Jen NZ March 31, 2013 - 10:43 am

Oh that is really really awesome! Super job!

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