Machine Quilting: Jinny Beyer Star

Before you ask, I don't know the name of this pattern, I tried to look online and I can't find it (granted I've had about 2 sips of coffee and it's still dark out) but if anyone wants to know the name, please leave a comment below and I will find it out and let you know later.
 This pattern is paper pieced (that I can tell you) and Anne made this out of several Jinny Beyer prints including her border fabrics.
 With a bunch of things going on, the first goal was to decide where to make the quilting stand out and where to make it more subtle. Naturally, on lighter solid-reading fabrics, you'll see the quilting much more than a dark busy print.
 Now in the prints with some sort of design like the center of the star and the outer edge of the points, I took my quilting cues from the fabrics and outlined the motifs as best I could.
 In the other areas that were more solid, I kept the designs to a minimum, but tried to tie the similar areas together with the quilting (the purple star points all have similar quilting).
 And with quilts that have interesting shapes like these shifting triangle things, I had to get a little creative, but I LOVE how it turned out! In paper pieced designs you come across shapes you never would in any regular pieced pattern and it makes me think outside of my box.
 I filled the light pink background with a filler to make a texture rather than another design element, and followed the cues on the interior to quilt the borders.
 Now here's the craziest thing. Here is the back after it's all done. (This is one of my favorite parts of finishing a quilt - to see how the back looks). This fabric is a very rosy mauve type of pink. Picking a thread was really hard. Pinks looked either white or neon if they were light or almost purple if they were darker, so on a whim I tried brown. It blended in so well and I wouldn't believe it myself if I didn't see it with my own eyes.

I used two thread colors on the top of the quilt and two on the bottom. You're not going to believe the combinations! Now, keep in mind there is a certain reach when using different threads on the top and the bottom of a quilt. You can change the colors only so much before the contrast is too great and even with the best tension ever, it'll still look off (usually due to the darker or bolder thread) With that said, there are always exceptions, but this is what I did and why:
The light pink and the purple threads were used on the top of the quilt. The light brown was used under the pink and the darker brown was used under the purple. The darker brown looked the best on the back, but the contrast between it and the pink was too great. The brown more than likely would have peeked out through the needle holes in the top of the quilt even if the tension was perfect.

Now I could loosen the tension a bit so it wouldn't show on the top, but then the light pink would show on the back... Dun dun DUN! See the dilemma? Now please keep this in mind when you go to your quilter with a super contrasting top and back and ask her to blend the threads in with the fabrics - it's not gonna happen. There has to be a compromise at some point. Usually though there is a really close alternative that will get you great results without being matchy matchy.

What threads are the worst for this? Without a doubt, red & black. They're bold and mean and don't play well with the other kids. It's the truth.

Well, I think it's time to have more coffee and get this day started. I can cover the thread and quilting stuff much more in later topics, so if you have something you're puzzled about and would like me to cover, please e-mail me at rubybluequilts (at) gmail (dot) com and I will try my best to include it in a post.

Anywho, Anne, thanks a bunch and I hope you get your quilt hung up as soon as that quilt rack gets made (hint hint nudge nudge wink wink) Anne showed me where the quilt will hang and was pointing out the fact of the quilting rack to her hubby very casually as he was sitting in the other room :) Your quilt is warm and beautiful and will look great once it's hung! Thanks for letting me quilt it and have fun!


  1. Interesting color choices with the thread! Thanks for walking us through your reasoning. I used to match the backing fabric with the bobbin thread and the top fabrics to the top threads - it was a pain, but I could balance the tension so there were no freckles. After a quilt judge told me that they prefer bobbin thread to match the top thread, that's what I do. Much easier!

  2. I love this quilt. I have some of the same fabrics in this and was wondering if you could find out what fabric Anne used for the light pink background. Hoping she knows what fabric company and line it was from. Thank you. Linda


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