Tools of the TradeOct 10th, 2011 | Category: Patterns, Quilts
The quilt Tools of the Trade, 48″ x 64″, was completed in 2006. It features sewflakes – or papercut-appliqué blocks – depicting some of the favorite tools in a quilt maker’s studio. The blocks are framed with a pieced sashing of Spool blocks and the border fabric is printed with thread spools as well. This is definitely a quilt for quilters and sewing enthusiasts!
The pattern for this quilt was published in my book Sewflakes: Papercut Appliqué Quilts by C&T Publishing. Now, for the first time, you can take a class to get you started on your own Tools of the Trade quilt. On October 22, 2011, the class will be held from 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Quilters Cupboard in Uxbridge ON. It will also be offered at Quilt Canada in Halifax NS on Saturday, June 2, 2012.
The first block that I designed for this quilt was the block “Cut it Out”. On a square piece of paper folded into eight equal segments, I drew half a pair of scissors on one fold just touching the opposite half at the tip of the blades.
When this was cut out and unfolded, the result was eight connected scissors with a star shape in the center.
To unify the blocks, I decided to incorporate that star shape in the center of each sewflake design in the quilt. “Pins and Needles” portrays thimbles as well as pins and needles in a pin cushion.
Here is the resulting block with embroidered pins and needles in the pin cushion.
One of our all-time favorite tools is our sewing machine, drawn with cut-outs in the table to create the center star shape.
This is the block “Sew Business” with embroidered thread detail.
Irons and ironing boards are the subject of the design “Pressing Matters”.
This is the block, complete with seed beads for the iron vent holes.
A wonderful invention that most quilters wouldn’t do without is the rotary cutter, seen here alongside its companion ruler.
Here is the block “The Cutting Edge”.
The sixth and final design features a tangled measuring tape.
Fusible appliqué was used to create the six 13″ x 13″ sewflake blocks, stitched with a tiny zigzag stitch in invisible thread to cover the raw edges. The blocks are framed with a pieced sashing of Spool blocks, each measuring 3 ¼” x 3 ¼”.
My color palette for this quilt was determined by the fabric I chose for the outer borders. The fabric spools of thread suggested the red for the scissors and pin cushions; the blue for the sewing machine tables; the green for the ironing boards; and the yellow/gold for the rotary cutters, rulers and measuring tape. They were echoed as well in the “thread” of the patchwork Spool blocks.