Back in the fall I got lucky when two such requests came in almost simultaneously: a pattern test and a fabric test. Tracey asked me if I would test her amazing new Cosmic pattern and Lynne asked if I would like to try Oakshott's new Lipari cottons (shot with black for a lux luminescence) and share the results on my blog. I had been staring at the beautiful fat eight stack of Lipari's sent my way, wondering what to do with them when Tracey's request came in.
Lightbulb moment: a Lipari Cosmic block! Finding the right background fabric from my stash to surround that star was tricky. The Lipari's are so rich and vibrant, flat cotton solid would not do. Only this black tone on tone batik seemed up for the task. You can see by the rotary cutter that this block is a behemoth, measuring about 28" square. This quilt design fits in perfectly with the popular craze of giant one-block quilts. Tracey's design was inspired by a vintage scarf and she worked up the pattern with EQ.
Now the quilting. I'm afraid my FMQing skills are rather rusty. I used to FMQ with abandon years ago, but I've been straight-lining it lately. I just couldn't see laying down a bunch of straight lines of one colour thread all over this star. No, I was envisioning a more traditional, formal quilting treatment. In a continuation of sharing the blogland love and asking for help, I turned to fellow VMQG member and friend Janet. She is amazing at quilting feathers and that's what I wanted on this wallhanging. Lucky me, she agreed to do a trade and is now working her magic on my Cosmic star (and don't worry, I'm enrolled in an advanced FMQ workshop in two week's time to kick start my mojo and get back in the swing. I want to FMQ my current scrap quilt - it's the perfect pattern to hide a rusty quilter's work!).
Tracey's excellent instructions and templates made this a surprisingly quick make. Even though it looks potentially complicated, the star sews together without y-seams. Just standard piecing! Tracey now has plexi-glass template sets available to help with cutting out and pre-trimming the triangular corners to make it even easier. I know that a full-size 88" quilt of this pattern is in my future (and I just ordered a set of templates to help with that. Bonus is that Tracey is working on a second pattern for the same templates!).
Shame I don't have a massive piece of farm equipment for a photo shoot!
This really gives you an idea of the scale of this quilt.
So there you have it, the Cosmic Connection that brought 4 bloggers together over one 28" square wallhanging. That's happy-making for me.
Disclosure: I'm not making money here people, but Oakshott supplied the fabric & Tracey supplied the block pattern. I bought the templates to support my friend because I think she's a fantastic quilt designer and her patterns are incredibly detailed and well-written.