So the day finally came after nearly 4 years, and my Supersized Small World is pieced, quilted, bound and photographed!
I started making this quilt as part of a sew along that sprang up when Jen Kingwell’s My Small World pattern was first published in Quilt Mania magazine in 2015. The original pattern was 52″ x 33″ which was just too weird a size for me – not bed sized by any means, or even lap sized, and I don’t have the kind of wall real estate for a hanging of those dimensions, so I decided to double the size of the original pattern pieces and then add a panel to the bottom to make it square and bed sized.
Living in Glasgow now, when I came to design my extension panel I decided that I had to add in both a river and a park to reflect my actual world, and I utilised a number of the blocks from the original pattern, adapted a few, made up a few and changed a few sizes to make it up. I added a bit of fun with the water wheel on the lower right, as the semi-circular doors in the original factory block just screamed out for reflection to make up a wheel, and one of my favourite places to visit in the Trossachs has an little stone cottage with a water wheel.
I happened to have a couple of bundles I’d picked up in sales in the year or so before the sew along started, several lines of Flower Sugar by Lecien and also a mixture of Pam Kitty Morning fabric, and happily they played well together, so I decided to use them to make a super bright and cheery world, along with Moda Grunge in various shades of ‘white’ for the sky. For the backing, I picked up some of Carrie Bloomston’s extra wide backing in News Print from the Story collection, and I ended up using it for the binding too. It seemed appropriate somehow to be reading all about my world.
Although I designed how I wanted the whole top to look before I started piecing, I only managed to do the original panel and a couple of blocks from the extension during the sew along. The rest got pushed aside until I discovered the sad original panel folded up and screaming out to be finished last summer, so I put it out of its misery but then I needed to get it quilted (and let’s face it, straight lines on my domestic machine just weren’t going to cut it)
When the original quilt along was going on, Karlee Porter happened to run some workshops in the UK teaching long armers how to free-motion quilt her fabulous graffiti designs, and I instantly knew that this was the kind of quilting I wanted for My Supersized Small World… But! When I finally finished it in 2018, there was no-one offering graffiti quilting as an option in the UK :o( Enter my friend Cath of Cumbrian Long Arm Quilting – she had used Karlee’s computerised clamshell designs on my Glam Clam quilt early last year, and as it happened, there were also graffiti block designs available, although she didn’t have them in stock (which lead to a 3 month wait for the pattern club to run through to get them all!).
I ended up going down to visit Cath so we could plan the whole thing out, because as well as the solid blocks of graffiti, I also wanted to add in a little secret, namely the places of all 8 towns and cities that I’ve lived in. Handily, Cath was able to import a number of graffiti fonts that I’d found, and we played around on her software with the frame blocks that came with graffiti blocks, pinning pieces of paper around the top for where we thought they’d look good.
Here’s a close up of some of the quilting, what can you spot?
I’ve entered this into Festival Of Quilts because I’d love it to be hung up somewhere that people could stare at it for a while and get lost in the amazing quilting. I think I might run a contest to see who can list the most place names they can find… no, you won’t win the quilt though ;o)
Fabric: Flower Sugar by Lecien, a variety of Pam Kitty Morning for Lakehouse Drygood Designs, a selection of white Grunge by Moda and News Print from Story by Carrie Bloomston for Windham
Thread: Aurifil 2021 for piecing, Aurifil 2600 for quilting
Batting: Warm & Natural Needled Cotton
Size: 105″ x 105″”
Quilting Design: Graffiti blocks by Karlee Porter
Quilted By: Cath from Cumbrian Long Arm Quilting
Pattern: My Small World by Jen Kingwell with extra panel by me