Friday, January 13, 2017

Sweet Rebellion: Dare to Fly

Dare to Fly 

Dare to Fly Quilt 
Improv Back

Welcome to my stop on the week long Blog Hop featuring Ink& Arrow Fabrics adorably edgy line called Sweet Rebellion by Felicia Gallo.    If you’re not familiar with their fabric be sure to browse.  I especially love the huge range in colorway of the Pixies Square Dot blender as a nice alternative to solids.

I had the opportunity to play around and bring to reality an original quilt design thanks to Ali and Courtney at W.O.W. Wives of Whitewood.  Visit their blog and check out the other Sewing Challenge projects that have been created.  If you hurry to Instagram you can enter their enormous fabric giveaway, 17 half-yard cuts, eek!

Design Decisions

One Possibility 
I knew it would be original, somewhat unexpected with a touch of tradition, just like the fabric line.   Unclear about which one to pick,  I decided to just start sewing the "spiky shape" portion and see where it landed.
The shape of choice

auditioning placement
The Packed Lily of the Valley in gray and pink became the main feature and almost immediately a butterfly shape began to present itself.    I went through several renditions before committing to the one that felt most rebellious. 

What if?

For my stop on the hop, rather than a "how to " tutorial,  I'm going to share about my process and the steps that led to the final Dare to Fly quilt design.  

When you're making it up as you go, you can spend a lot of time playing around the the endless possibilities.   And because there is no one right answer (in my book at least), it can be quite a game.   One that I love to play and you might too.  

Placing bits of fabric here and there can give a general idea what it might look like sewn in.  Using a mosaic app on your phone is another cheat.  Because I try and stay 'in the creative zone" the pictures aren't pretty but rather a tool for decision making.
virtual repeat
Secondary patterns can be tricky.  Especially with a dark fabric, or collective mass.  Something small can take on an entirely different scale and become overwhelming. drawing attention away from what you are trying to feature. 
dominant secondary pattern
Sashing and inserting small bits to break up space is one solution.  I decided that i liked the movement of the final layout although the placement in the sample below was a close second.  The butterflies felt to pushed to the edge and the center plus too focal. 
Flying in Circles
There's also the chance of unintended shapes to watch for.   My hubby thought one orientation looked like a bunch of mustaches and another I thought resembled crab claws. Abstract yet recognizable is also a fine line.  It's easy to get chaotic but allowing the eye to rest is an important part of being able to enjoy the shapes.  

I think surrounding the center with the sweetness of the Peonies & Chains print brings it all together and lends a traditional vibe.   Inserting a thin inner border of dark pink chain compliments the flowers and extending the horizontal line emphasizes the movement of the dashes. 

For the quilting motif,  I went for an overall swirl to mimic the chain swirls.  My friend let me use her longarm for not only this one but the soon to be blogged about SBAMQG design challenge quilt (Get a Grip) that needed to be entered to our local show immediately.  To speed up and eliminate the step of loading individually, I sewed the backs together.  A handy trick even if it looks a little odd. 

Delightful Detour 

Easily distracted might be an accurate description of my creative process as well.  During the early experimentation stage of the spiky shape I took a detour to sew an art supply pouch as a birthday gift for my son's girlfriend.  
Using a vintage zipper and making it extra long to house scissors, brushes or whatever she might want to keep in it.   I think there is a certain "vantage point" to the design which I think of when remembering art lessons.

Riding a bike off into the sunset also came to mind.  My favorite part is the circle and illusion of the peak through.  I didn't fussy place the chain but you get the idea.  I cut the "block" in two parts so that it would flip and make the most of the elements that I liked on both sides. 

Encore Images and a Fabric Giveaway

There was a break in the storm and I was able to take the finished quilt out for a proper photos shoot - which almost makes up for the poor lighting of the process shots!   There was a little wind wrangling and dodging of puddles and mud but it was worth it. posting to  Finish it Up Friday 

Improv Back
Sunset Capitola 01.12.2017

I'm giving away some extra Sweet Rebellion fabric from my projects (domestic shipping only please).  Leave a comment letting me know you'd like to be entered and about any design related topic.   I will pick a winner a week from today. EDIT: giveaway closed/congratulations Kathy E.

2017 FAL Q1 Linky Party Reminder

Last but not least, don't forget to link up your Finish Along 2017 FAL Q1 goals before the linky party closes on the 14th of January at 11pm EST.   

You can read all about it in the Finish Along tab above or the blog post here.   

L-R top-bottom: Sarah, Leanne, Felicity, Karen (me), Izzy, Ella, Judith, Jess, Nicky, Abigail, Lucy, Rhonda, Marci

Check back to learn more about the 2017 Hosts as we introduce them each month starting on the 15th.


  1. I am in awe of your abilities. Perhaps you could do a trunk show or speak at one of our guild meetings this year?

  2. So interesting! Thanks for the process post! I don't need to be entered in the giveaway, but wanted you to know I was here and enjoyed this one! Congrats on successful exploration...

  3. I am always interested in how quilters choose a design and the process used to get to the final product. I am really interested in working more on curved pieces.

    1. Congratulations Kathy E. You are the winner of the Fabric Giveaway. I will email you for your mailing information.


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