Monday, May 24, 2010

The Hope Valley Pillows

I created each of our bedroom pillows from simple ideas that were floating around in my head.  I had very few scraps left to play with, and I didn't want to overwhelm them with too much pattern.

The 12"x16" pillow was cut and pieced from a scrap block that didn't make it into the quilt top.  This pillow includes all of the prints from the top, grouped by color.  I love the random look but my eyes and brain find it much more calming to look at something with a bit more order.
A few offset pieced strips, button closures, and this pillow was done!

The second pillow that I worked on was the selvedge strips.  I used paper foundations to piece 4 6" squares. I drew a diagonal line through each square, covered 1 side with grey kona and on the other side I added selvedge strips.  The only marking that I did was to make the diagonal of the foundation.  After each block was covered, I trimmed the edges to 6" square.  After playing with several different layouts, I decided on the striped design.  I left the paper foundations on the blocks until after I had all 4 blocked pieced together.  This pillow also has a layer of batting and some straight line quilting.  I finished the pillow with purple piping, grey kona for backing, and purple buttons on the envelope closure.

The last pillow is probably my favorite.  I wanted a pillow with out last name initial, "M".  But I didn't want the look of machine embroidery.  So I drafted a paper pieced block pattern!  It's a really easy process, especially if you already have some paper piecing knowledge.  And it resulted in just the look that I was going for - crisp but not perfect!  I also had the initial idea of using elastic thread to smock the border fabric, but decided to try using my ruffler foot instead.  I left the ruffler stitches in until the pillow was complete, but I found that they distracted from the print in the border.  I'm so glad that I pulled them all out.  I love how the fabric has kept it's print even with all of the gathering.

I have a few more Hope Valley scraps left over.  I'm hoping to try a log cabin style block with selvedge strips next.  First I need to get to work on Addy's quilt and pillows, though.  She had a ton of fun "helping" me with these, and she can't stop talking about her new quilt and pillows. :)


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