Animal Quilts Blog Hop November 2017

Thanks for joining us for the continuation of the Animal Quilts Book Blog Hop.  Only a few more entries remain in this epic event, so enjoy!

For those of you who know Juliet van der Heijden, aka The Tartankiwi, you know that I’ve been a fan of her work for a while now. I’ve tested out a variety of her patterns and she is all that when it comes to the world of foundation paper piecing. One of my favorites came to be known as the fruit strip gum zebra because who doesn’t love a rainbow zebra (yes, that is a tear you see on his face because he is NOT in the book – I’m working on getting Juliet and her publisher to make sure he is in volume 2 – i’m available to assist as long as I get to move to New Zealand). I’ve also done the cutest otter you have ever laid eyes on, a kingfisher, and a lovely fawn.

So to say I had a fanboy moment when Juliet and SewandSoUK approached me to work on pieces from her new book and participate in the blog hop is an understatement. Let’s jump right in to the book but first, these words from Juliet:

I loved making all these patterns for you to use. Read about it on my blog and in my book! And Quilt Market was great fun.

Okay well it’s not a real quote but what I imagine she would say if she didn’t live on the other side of the planet and we could have coffee and spend hours talking about foundation paper piecing (FPP).

Onto the book! Animal Quilts has 12 gorgeous, FPP designs ranging in sizes 21 x 14 to 50 square. The book has instructions on resizing the patterns to suit your needs (handy dandy tables no less). As Juliet notes in her book, the possibilities on the patterns are endless. Want to make a quilt with a panda and a polar bear? Go ahead (I did)!

The book is superbly arranged. Juliet provides a great getting started section, providing information on paper piecing including equipment, fabric selection, and the always helpful how to’s. All twelve patterns in the book come with very detailed instructions and finishing steps (adding borders where needed, making it into a quilt sandwich, etc). Juliet also graciously provides assembly diagrams, colouring diagrams (yes autocorrect, leave me alone, I’m pretending I actually speak and write the English language), colouring charts, numbering diagrams, and of course the pattern pieces.

Juliet’s pattern pieces are always superb – while they may span more than one page, she makes them magically go together by providing the washi tape – oh wait, you have to get your own washi tape. But they do go together magically – just a little trimming on the red line, lining pieces up and voila, you now have the full needed pattern piece. She has also provided some very helpful tips on patterns where they are needed – baste when you have a complex join to make sure everything lines up (you listening, you know who you are), where extra care is needed in alignment, and other nice reminders on what is no longer a frustration because she has taken the time to give you her insights. And she is one of the few pattern creators who bother to take the time to make sure the patterns fit both A4 and letter formats!

So again, go buy the book. It is the best. Really. You will have fun with the variety of creations Juliet provides and enjoy the creative process as you decide what to make and your color choices to make them your own.

Thanks for joining me on the blog hop for Animal Quilts. Enjoy.

Oh wait, I almost forgot, I was making things from the book too! I’ve been trying to be all secret sewing with them and so secretive I apparently forgot about them!  I hate secrets. And yes, I may just make everything in the book because I’m smitten.

First up is Paula Panda in Alison Glassland. My sister was totally fixated on pandas when we were growing up and we took a zoo trip so she could see one. This one finishes at 20 x 20.

Second up is Juliet’s Night Owl but I’ve done mine in all white (yep, Harry Potter fans, yep).

I love the starkness of the snow owl against the night sky. True confessions – I took creative license with the left wing (okay, really truthful I mismarked a piece as white when it should have been black, yet I still live and the quilt gods have not smoted me – go figure).

I already shared my polar bear on Instragram, but in case you missed it here it is.  As you will see I was drawn to the black and whites.  And there was an Alison Glass fat quarter bundle sitting for far too long on my stash shelf so I used it for what became very crazy quilt colorful background for the panda and polar bear.

And now drum roll please because last but not least is my choice for the blog hop, Swan. In the book, Juliet had wondered what a white/black piece would look like and I was all in since I love working with black and white. It came out to be what I had expected and more though I did have to reach out to Juliet for some technical assistance (am I right facing or left facing???!!! I was having some work in reverse paper piecing challenges).

This next space is reserved for the quilted and bound version, which hopefully will happen.  Nothing like bumping up to a deadline.  My long arm quilter let me run amok on her machine.  Probably not for the best.  I may have done ‘continuous’ a little too much so there are some spots that are a little overly quilted.  But it still looks superb.

(Insert finished piece here – if this is blank I didn’t get the binding on! Well, it’s not blank so it is all quilted and bound – and the black and white dog decided to help with the final pictures.)

Here’s a detail shot of the super quilting on the swans courtesy of Kappes Kreations.

And during the paper removal process I found that I had dropped a beak piece – not once, but twice and two different places, so while reflective, each of them have their own uniqueness. And I’m calling it ‘The Darkness in All of Us is Just Below the Surface’.

Yes, I believe I’m having an existential crisis but you will  have to take me out for coffee if you want to know more.

In summary, Juliet’s book is a gorgeous, well written book with welcome addition to my quilty library, and it has phenomenal patterns that you should own.  Go, put it on your wish list!

Thanks again Juliet and SewandSew UK!

If you’ve missed any of the blog posts during the hop, catch up with them. And don’t forget to watch for Sariditty’s post tomorrow!

The blog schedule is over at SewandSoUK and you can also find the book for purchase there (non UK people go over to Amazon – I’ve even seen it on Target’s website too!).

If you want to go check out each of the blog posts, here are the linky things you will need.

Monday 6th November – Juliet The Tartankiwi

Tuesday 7th November – Annabel from Little Pincushion Studio

Wednesday 8th November – Chris from Made by Chrissie D

Thursday 9th November – Quilting Daily – Moved to the 18th

Friday 10th November – Matthew from Mister Domestic

Monday 13th November – Kate from Quilt with Kate

Tuesday 14th November – Kristi from Schnitzel and Boo

Wednesday 15th November – Angie from Gnome Angel

Thursday 16th November – Paul aka Evildemondevildog

Friday 17th November – Sarah from Sariditty