From Zeus, Athena

Wonky 9 Patch - Full, unsewn
Wonky 9 Patch - Full, unsewn

I do not believe in the concept of Quilt in a Day. I love Eleanor Burns, I love various quick techniques and the rotary cutter, but I simply do not believe I can make a well designed quilt with great piecing and wonderful quilting in a day.It is not possible for me.

I do believe I can get a lot done in one day, though, and this quilt is proof.

Short story: the top is finished except for the quilting border; back is nearly finished. I do not want this project to linger. I want to finish the back and get it to the quilter. I want to be done with my part before the weekend. We will see. I don’t want it to become an albatross.

Kathleen's Wonky 9 Patch
Kathleen's Wonky 9 Patch

Inspiration is a funny thing. You never know when it will strike or what will spur it on. The combination of Kathleen’s quilt, the Pinterest photo and the oranges that I bought some weeks ago from the quilt shop From Here to Quilternity all coalesced into one big blob of inspiration and I sewed.

And inspiration breeds inspiration.

Susan, of the History Quilter podcast commented on Twitter (yes, I am there, too. You can follow me – @artquiltmaker) that the orange part of the quilt looked like mosaics. As you know, I love mosaics and tile and try to take inspiration from them where I can. Susan is absolutely right and her comment has been on my mind all day.

  • what would a quilt look like if I did the same idea, but made the blocks and, thus, the pieces smaller?
  • how would this design look with no plain blocks?
  • is this a great way to explore monochromatic color schemes?
  • etc.

My mind is whirling with possibilities. Simply whirling. If I had more time, I would explore all of these possibilities. Perhaps someday.


Long story: I really got a bug in my ear on Thursday night. I happened to look at a Pinterest photo (above, the door and the orange textiles) I had pinned some weeks ago and that photo, along with Kathleen‘s quilt made got me started.

Did I need another project? No.

Did I care? Obviously not. The muse must be satisfied.

Wonky 9 Patch - detail
Wonky 9 Patch - detail

I spent Friday late afternoon and evening cutting 9.5″ squares from the fat quarter group from the From Here to Quilternity quilt shop. I had to press and cut other pieces according to my ‘new fabric regime’, but it went well. The next day I began sewing.

Kathleen had done a demo for making these blocks and she reminded me that this is an Oh! Fransson pattern. I had forgotten.

When I looked at the pattern, I knew exactly what to do. I referred to it for sizes, but I also just went my own way. I have done this kind of piecing before with the Slash Stars. The thing that makes this quilt, IMO is the setting. Brilliant.

I also, like Kathleen, made the quilt a bit bigger. It has to be wrapped around a boy, so it needed to be bigger. If I had had more of the blue fabric, I would have added two more rows to the bottom, but I didn’t.

Fresh Squeezed FQ Pack
Fresh Squeezed FQ Pack

The only tiny quibble I have with the pattern (perhaps it is just a tutorial?) is the movement of the pieces. You can’t just move one piece each time. You need to move 2 at one point, three at another. I think this needs to be a bit clearer, BUT I should also read the directions all the way through before starting a project. 😉 I looked at my pieces and moved them according to what I thought was best, so it worked out.

I am pretty pleased with my blue plain squares. This sort of blue was my plan all along. I had planned to buy a solid, but didn’t have a Kona color card and wanted to make sure I had the right color. Blah. Blah. Blah.

On a whim, I delved into the fabric closet and came up with the blue fabric above, which is an old commercial hand dye. It is probably a Hoffman, but I don’t know for sure. I love it because it complements the orange perfectly. I like Kathleen’s grey background (the photo above does not do it justice); I am not so fond of the white (I know, Modern quilt blasphemy) in EH’s version. Then again, I am a color girl, someone in love with color, so I didn’t expect anything less.

Now I am in love with orange and blue. Stay tuned for the ramifications. 😉

The title of this post has to do with how Athena was born. Zeus got a massive headache and then Athena sprang, fully formed, from his forehead. Can’t imagine the scar. 😉 That is how I feel about this quilt. I didn’t do much of the work – EH designed the quilt, Kathleen made it and showed it at a guild meeting; I took up the baton and ran with the idea.

Author: Jaye

Quiltmaker who enjoys writing and frozen chocolate covered bananas.

6 thoughts on “From Zeus, Athena”

  1. I love, love this orange and blue quilt! How big is it? You can see some of my history w orange and blue in my sewing room at SeamedUp.

    No, I have never made a quilt in a day, even a small quilt. There is life. Today I did design and piece a baby quilt top (see my Facebook for an early peek: I suppose I could sandwich it and quilt it tonight if the world depended on it, but that’s an awfully lot of sitting in the same spot.

    1. the blocks are 7/25″ finished. I think it comes out to about 55×55, but I am seriously thinking of putting another row of blocks on the bottom.

      Process! Not product. Wait til tomorrow to finish up that quilt! 😉

  2. Your quilt is lovely. I also love mosaics and have made the Slash Stars quilt so I understand the concept behind your block. The “fresh squeezed” fabrics look wonderful put together that way and especially with the complementary blue. Looks like a fun and fairly quick quilt. How do you plan on having it quilted? Oh, thanks for the mention and link to my shop…that was very nice of you!

    1. Thanks for reading and commenting! I don’t know how I will have it quilted. I am thinking about using two colors: blue and orange, but will have to see how far I can push my quilter.

  3. I am in loooove with this quilt. As you are, I also am an admirer of mosaic tiles. And I really like how the hint of pinks look with the orange fabrics. The blue totally compliments the orange blocks. And I agree with you, I don’t believe in making a good quality quilt in a day. That’s just not happening for me. Specially when it takes 3-4 hours just to baste. 🙂 Maybe if I used pre-cuts which I don’t because of pre-washing reasons. There you have it! 🙂 Can’t wait to see it back from the quilter, it’s one of my favorites you made!

    1. I always like to put a hint of something else into my two color quilts as I think it adds a bit of interest. I have to be careful not to overpower the main colors, though. There is also a hint of green in this one. I think I might quilt this one myself. We will see.

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