cultivate blog tour + a new wall quilt

Good morning! Welcome to my stop on the Cultivate Blog Tour, a blog hop celebrating Bonnie Christine's latest fabric collection, Cultivate. I've sewn with Bonnie's fabric and ribbon before (using them in both a lined tote bag and a round zipper pouch), and I must say that the colors and patterns in this latest collection are among my favorites.

In case it's your first time here, welcome! My name is Caitlin, and I'm a full-time quilter working out of my studio in southern New Hampshire. In addition to selling quilts and patchwork goods in my online shop, I also stock hard-to-find and exclusive screen-printed fabrics from indie designers. You can find me on Instagram and keep up with shop news by signing up for my newsletter.

Now on to the project: I knew that I wanted to make a wall quilt with the four fat quarters from Cultivate that I selected, but it wasn't until Sunday when inspiration for a quilt design struck. While selling quilts at an outdoor craft show in Boston, I spotted this geometric tea towel by Cat Wagon Prints in the booth across the way. I was immediately drawn to the design, so I purchased a towel and started sketching out ideas on how to translate the shapes into a quilted piece.

When it came time to start constructing the top, I decided to use needle-turn appliqué in lieu of traditional piecing, since it would allow me to more easily layer the shapes on top of one another. I cut out circles from the navy blue floral---the print that initially drew me to the collection---and thread basted and then sewed the circles to a piece of unbleached muslin.

Once those were stitched down, I started on the pink and chartreuse/yellow triangles. I initially started with half-square triangles, like those in the original tea towel, but almost immediately gave up on that shape when it came time to turn under the acute angle corners---my needle-turn appliqué skills are not there quite yet! So instead, I cut out equilateral triangles and arranged them across the top, stitching them down and practicing and perfecting my angles as I went.

Once everything was hand-stitched, I machine quilted over all of the shapes with my favorite grid design in natural-colored thread, and then machine bound the quilt with a pink and white stripe from the collection.

This turned out to be such a fun experiment in quilt design, and though the hand appliqué process was definitely time intensive, I think the results were well worth it.

Would you like to see some more projects using Cultivate fabrics? Be sure to check out the onesies Bonnie made out of knit for the little girl she's expecting this month (!), the knit tops her mom made, and the project Sandy from Crafty Planner will be posting tomorrow. And in the meantime, you can now find this quilt listed for sale in the shop.

Quilt Stats
Finished dimensions: 20.5" x 21.5"
Fabrics used: Unbleached muslin; Plotted Farm in Autumn and Moss, Floriculture in Midnight, and Row by Row in Lit, all from the Cultivate collection by Bonnie Christine.
Quilt design: Original by Salty Oat