Quilting Challenges

Over the next 2 to 3 weeks of blogging, I’ll be focusing on one project and one project only. How many of you have been a part of quilting challenges? Well, I’m in the thick of one right now. Elaine, one of the other QUILTsocial bloggers and I were each asked to create a quilt by the editor-in-chief of A Needle Pulling Thread magazine. We will blog about our experience designing and creating this quilt. The quilts are to be gender specific – one for a male and one for a female. I’m designing the male one. The name of the challenge is What’s Good For the Gal is Good For the Guy. A rather witty name.

There are a few rules to this challenge. I was given a little blurb on the personality of the male, for whom this quilt is being designed and he’s all logic, mathematics, geometry and science. He’s in university and 20 years old.

When the challenge was presented to me, I thought the male version would be easier. Now that I’m in the thick of it, well, I’m not so sure. I have to say that it took me a while to get my head around what I would design because, you see, we each have the same fabric to use and a limited amount of it. So, nothing too complicated, but nothing too basic either.

My supplies of tools and fabric for the challenge

The Fabrics

The main fabric or feature fabric was donated for this quilting challenge by Coats and Clark and is called Eclectic Elements by Tim Holtz. There are mostly 10-inch squares, some fat eights and a couple of fat quarters. The fabric is very cool with all kinds of eclectic designs – road maps, letters, signs of all sorts, bottle caps, stripes and much much more. You see the supply is a bit limited, so no room for error when creating this one and no “do overs”. The color of the fabric has a sepia look to it.

The Eclectic Elements Fabric

For the background fabric, I’m using a couple denim blue-colored fabrics – both with a bit of texture that work well together and complement the feature fabric. All of this will be perfect for a boy.

The two blue background fabrics

The backing fabric was donated by Northcott and is a gorgeous denim blue-colored flannel that looks like a Harris Tweed. It’s from the Man About Town fabric line.

Blue flannel for backing


I picked out a couple of interesting templates from the H. A. Kidd website to use for creating some cool geometric shapes as quilting motifs. When they arrived in the mail, I thought: These are “way cool” and I’ll be able to make shapes to be appliqued onto the quilt! If the shapes from these templates were used to piece blocks, they would require inset seams and, oh boy, I’m not a fan of those. So, I’ll stick to applique, of which I’m a fan, especially the fusible web type.

H. A. Kidd was very kind to donate these three templates, as well as, the batting for the challenge.

The first template is the Jelly Pointer Template from SewEasy.

The Jelly Pointer template

The second template is the Jelly Monster Template, also from SewEasy.

The Jelly Monster Template

So many shapes can be made with the two templates from above. I had no idea when I was looking at them on the website that they did all this.

And, finally, a 9 Piece Haxagon Set also from SewEasy.

Hexagon Template Set


I’ll be using a variety of thread from Wonderfil for piecing, stitching around the applique, and quilting.

A variety of Wonderfil threads

The Sewing Machine

For this challenge, Pfaff has provided me with the Creative 4.5 sewing machine with all the bells and whistles, including an embroidery unit. I’ll be doing a lot of manual reading with this machine to get to know it.

The Pfaff Creative 4.5

First things first! I best figure out a design for this quilt because What’s Good For the Gal is Good For the Guy. Quilting challenges are so much fun and they certainly are great for getting the creative juices flowing.

Happy Quilting!

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Embroidering a quilt label with the PFAFF Creative 4.5

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Janet Hart May 12, 2015 - 2:36 pm
What a fun Challenge. I can't wait to see the end result!! Focusing on one thing may be the hardest part. I have a lot of trouble just working on one thing at a time. It would take me a whole day to count everything I have started. I think I should start a blog and put pictures of each finished project. Maybe that would motivate me to stick to one until it is done!!
Carla A. Canonico May 14, 2015 - 10:35 am
Who knows!?! It's like a diary, right? Once you commit to starting it might just be the thing to keep you on track! Let me know how it goes.
Mary Van Dijk January 19, 2015 - 6:51 pm
I am in love with the Pfaff machine you are using. I am looking to add a new machine to my stable to use on my Hinterburg frame.
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