I think one of my favourite parts of joining swaps is the challenge to make something for someone else. Thinking about them and their likes, whether it is fabric lines, pattern designers or a particular style/aesthetic. My latest Tula Pink swap for Melanie was no exception.
In her questionnaire Mel wrote “I love Art Gallery designers, Camille Roskelley, bursts of colour, modern quilts and also modern spins on traditional designs” and for colours she selected “Pink, Purple, aqua, teal, indigo, coral AND rainbow!” I thought this was a fabulous opportunity to channel my inner Camille and selected the Norway Mini Quilt pattern to try. Of course, I felt that the pattern could do with some tweaking, so I omitted the checkerboard border in favour of making 4 simple snowflakes, each one in it’s own Tula fabric. I used some very precious Parisville scraps for the little L shapes in the corners of the blocks, and these became a feature in their own right.
The quilting wasn’t quite what I originally intended, but anything too complicated took away from the amazing colours, so I quilted organic wavy lines through all of the negative space, except for the squares inside the flakes which received a dense back and forth fill. Between this quilting and the careful stitch in the ditch I completed around each shape initially, the flakes puffed up beautifully.
The plain white back shows up the shapes incredibly well. I wanted to keep the feel fresh and bright, so I extended the white even to the binding.
Of course, I am always brimming over with ideas, so I experimented a little with the extras for this swap and created a Tula Pink squirrel embroidered hoop, carefully tracing the pattern from the fabric and colour matching the different shades of yellow and pink.
He’s an absolute beauty and I know I will have to make him again, if only to hang on my own wall!
Finally I created a needle book, again following the tutorial from NanaCompany. The Tula paper pieced feather is tiny, at less than 4 inches tall. It was perfect for featuring some incredible patterned fabric, all used in the mini quilt. Pattern is the Teeny Tiny Feather from What the bobbin?
on Craftsy.com – I can’t seem to find this designer or her block online anymore. I just couldn’t bear to cover any of the feather with a button, so I added a ribbon tie closure into the book as I was seaming it up. The ribbon is folded over twice inside the seam, so it should hold very securely.
Added into the parcel were some lovely teas, chocolates, a fabulous pink Eiffel tower eraser, bangle and chapsticks for Mel or her gorgeous little girl and a fat quarter of fabric from my collection.
I had as much fun wrapping the parcel up as I did in creating it! Three shades of pink tissue paper, lots of doilies, decorations and washi tape to make getting the swap in the mail so special.
Of course, the most fabulous part was how much it was loved at the other end. I think that I managed the brief just fine!
Which of Tula’s fabulous feature characters would you like to see on a hoop?
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I love your Tula Norway! The strips of Tula look great in that pattern and the quilting is fantastic! And that hoop is fabulous too! I know how much time you must have dedicated to that embroidery. Your partner is very lucky!
I was lucky to have some help from a sharper eyed child with tracing the squirrel, after that it was just stitch after stitch! Thanks so much for commenting Agnes, I always look forward to hearing from you 🙂
I love swaps for the very same reason! It’s so great to get to make something that someone else will adore. And your swap package is amazing. The quilting on the mini, the elaborate embroidery, and the sweet needle book. I am sure they will be treasured!
Thankyou so much Jennie. It’s certainly been a labour of love 🙂
Absolutely beautiful work as usual Cassie, especially that squirrel!!!!!
Thanks Fiona. The squirrel was just one of those ideas that really worked out!
Such a stunning mini with amazing quilting. And wonderful extras too! What a lucky partner you had!
Thanks Johanna! I certainly try to give my partners a bit of spoiling. Everyone needs to feel special 😉
Oooo…I’m having fun looking around your blog! All so nice…sorry being a gushy fan girl here!!
Gush away Ali, I don’t mind 😉