My quilt Transitions is in the new issue of Australian Patchwork and Quilting (Vol 20 No 6).
As well as being the 2011 annual, this issue features machine quilting, and Transitions is more about the quilting and the fabrics than the piecing - making the top couldn't be much simpler!
Transitions uses a selection of hand-dyed gradient fabrics by Vicki Welsh. When I received the first selection I bought from her Etsy shop, I laid them all out next to each other for a photo, and as soon as I saw the image, I knew I had to turn it into a quilt. Since then, I've bought many more of Vicki's gradient fabrics, and do the same each time.
In a nice coincidence, this issue just happens to have another quilt made using Vicki's gradients; unusually it contains a review of a US quilt show, and the first quilt pictured is the spectacular "Seasons of the Moon" by Deb Levy. Vicki has collaborated with Deb to sell patterns for these along with the gradients.
The quiting for this started by drawing out the snowflake quliting designs, marking them and stitching them in Superior silver metallic thread - this is the only metallic thread I've found which stitches perfectly in free-motion.
I really love the large snowflake...
...so there are lots of photos of it...
The two smaller snowflakes are the same design as each other, but slightly different sizes; this is the larger of the two:
The difficulty with this quilt (apart from the titanium needle issue I had!) was working out a background filler which would match the snowflakes in density, but not detract from them or the fabrics. To help with this, I first echo-quilted the snowflakes in monofilament.
I eventually McTavished it using a clear monofilament. It works well in person, but in photographs this does still complete with the snowflakes. The variations in colour across the quilt necessitated the monofilament, but unfortunately it does reflect a little in some photos, and the extremitis of the larger flake do get a little lost.
I'd really like to try stitching this snowflake onto a plainer background sometime and achive greater contrast between the snowflake and the fabric and filler.
The photo below shows the two smaller flakes together. I really like the way the one on the left stands out on the centre fabric.
For now, I need to get back to quilting; I have a king-size quilt which needs to be completely finished this long weekend, and there's a long way to go!