Monday, February 1, 2016

Design Time: Dune, Peg+Cat, Descendants, and more!

As I'm getting through my giant list of things that need to be organized, fixed, and weeded through, I finally reached the dreaded computer.  I got the new O/S installed, which means I was able to put my EQ7 back on at long last.  Couple that with a week of being down with a cold, and that means I got lots of block drafting done.

I started out with a Dune quilt.  This is a book series I have returned to many times in the last couple of decades, so it's a quilt I have wanted to make since I started paper piecing.  I've looked for patterns from other designers off and on, with no luck.  I figured it was up to me to fill the gap.  I think I represented most of the basic elements of the original trilogy: Houses Atreides and Harkonnen, a Fremen, Muad'Dib, sandworms, the skyline and two moons, and the Bene Gesserit as represented by an abbreviated Litany Against Fear.

Dune mini quilt.

That Fremen eye is based off of a really striking piece of art called The Fremen Child by Mitchell Hicks over on DeviantArt.  He was gracious enough to let me use it as an inspiration piece.  I did change it a little by removing the second eye, but that made the piecing much easier.  You can view more of his work over here.

This is actually my first time designing a quilt that is not just separate blocks strung together with sashing, so I like to think I'm growing a little as a designer.  I thought it might be fun to include my initial quilt sketch so you can see where these designs spring from.  It's a little embarrassing because this was literally a two-minute sketch and was never meant for other people's eyes, but I'm not going to stand on ceremony here.

My initial sketch for the quilt outline.  Check out that eagle!
And that griffin!  High-class art right there.  I especially love the sandworm;
it reminds me of a Quentin Blake drawing.  Except not as cool.

If you would like to test part of or all of this quilt, please let me know and I will get you the link to the PDF.  I am hoping to finish this up myself in March or April.  Too much on the plate right now, but I feel good knowing that I at least have it drafted.  I also want to spend some time finding the perfect fabric for it.

Once this was done I thought, "What could I design that would be the complete opposite of Dune?  How about Peg+Cat?"  Actually, my son has recently become a Peg+Cat addict (which I can thank for his new squishy hugs accompanied by, "You're amazing!"), and I was already toying with the idea of making a block for him.  When I went through the list of design requests on Fandom in Stitches, this request stuck out to me and I thought I would give it a go.

Who doesn't love Peg and Cat?  Peg looks like and reminds me of my amazing middle daughter.
Cat cracks me up.  He reminds me of Teddy from Bob's Burgers for some reason.

There are a ton of sections (27!), but that is partly because Peg and Cat are on the same block.  Had I done them separately, it would not have looked so overwhelming.  The beautiful thing about this pattern is that you can do Peg without Cat or Cat without Peg, but I don't know why you ever would.  They go everywhere together.

I have a tester lined up for this, but the more, the merrier.  Let me know if you want to test.

I also threw together a little Descendants block to make a mini quilt for my daughter's upcoming birthday.  I'm hoping to get it done in time, and then it can hang in their Descendants-themed "dorm room."  I'm copping out on this birthday and the girls are all getting invitations to spend the night at Auradon Prep, which is already decorated up because that's the room theme the girls chose.  Work smart, not hard, right?  ;)

Here's the block:

Maleficent's mark, from Disney Descendants.

I think this will be a fun one to piece.  I ordered some awesome Disney villain fabric for the backing, so I'll show it off when it arrives.  I don't plan on designing the other villains unless someone desperately wants one.  Testers welcome!

I finished up two(!) other quilt patterns this week, but they are both gifts so it will be a little while before I can share.  I'm hoping to have these all tested and posted in the next three months, which I think is a reasonable goal.

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