Saturday, November 19, 2011

Was Ugly. Still Ugly?

In September, quilters who wanted to participate in our DSMMQG (Des Moines Modern Quilt Guild) "One Fourth Ugly" swap brought in a sack with a quarter yard of fabric, or equivalent pieces of a quarter yard of fabric, and took home someone else's fabric. We had two months to make something using that ugly stuff, and can keep what we made. Last night's DSMMQG meeting was our big reveal.

Here's mine.
"Ugly," 31-1/2" X 31-1/2"
The single piece of fabric in my sack was the tone-on-tone dull aqua print. It appears as wedges in each circle, and as binding.

Flipping through my trusty Encyclopedia of Pieced Quilt Patterns, I came across this "Snowball Wreath" and proceeded to figure out how to make it.

Piecing and machine applique were both used to make four 15" finished blocks. 

I quilted with bright yellow 50-weight Aurifil thread.

The quilting designs include lots of channel quilting marked with a Hera marker, and free motion bubbles.

Because the challenge was to use ugly fabric I made that perfectly clear on the quilt back! Since winning a giveaway that included the book "Word Play Quilts," (Thank you, Madame Samm!) I'm having fun finding places to put words. 
indoor photo
Three more of my own ugly prints were used up in this backing too. Yay! This print, that I finally used up, was bought sometime in the mid-80's. I've heard, but can't find any supporting evidence, that it's considered "a classic." It was one of Concord's (?) most popular prints and was available in several colorways. I also have it in lavender.

Though I didn't use to be, I'm now fairly diligent about making sure my quilts get a label.

For this quilt, I probably didn't need a label at all since this really says it. 

Check out more of our uglies on Doris's blog. And even more pictures of uglies and our holiday swap items are on our modern guild website

The antithesis of ugly is this - what our front yard looked like a couple days ago. It was quite literally "raining leaves"...  pretty golden-colored ones from a maple tree. 

However, by the end of the day the tree was bereft of leaves, and after several passes with the mulching lawn mower, was a mass of golden compost. Such a pretty end to autumn. Linda


  1. Doris didn't show the front, just the ugly word backing. Linda, you did an amazing job with those circles, and I find your color selection quite appealing! BTW, who didn't have some of your backing fabric back in the day? I think I still do....! you certainly rose to the occasion with this NOT ugly finish ~

  2. That turned out great and I had that teal paisley in my stash for a while too! I think it's finally all gone from my stash. There are bits of it in a LOT of quilts that I made!

  3. you get GREAT points with me....your use of ugly is great... the leaves this year leave a lot to be enjoyed.... so I will look to next fall for a blaze of leaves.... and sew we go.

  4. I don't see ugly.. it is quite lovely.

  5. Hi! Greetings from Finland! Your quilts are so fantastic! It's so nice to find other quilters all around the world! :)

  6. Your wonderful quilt is certainly not ugly. WOW is all I can say. It's stunning. Great use of colour, fantastic quilting, love your back.
    What a talented quilter you are.

  7. Linda, Your quilt turned out so great! I don't think I have ever seen that unusual block before. What "ugly"
    fabric did you give up?

  8. What is a Hera marker for your quilting - I seem to audition a bazillion marking pencils and the lot are useless.

  9. Brilliant!!! :) that's a great swap idea too!

  10. Definitely NOT an ugly duckling of a quilt! You've done marvels with that rather ordinary fabric, and I imagine you had plenty of aqua fabrics to team it with (blues and aquas being favourites of yours). Fabulous block design too - a new one to me. It's a winner!

  11. I think the quilt is misnamed. There is not an ugly thing about it. I love the colors and the design is wonderful. Your quilting is just perfect for the blocks as well. It's fun to see what you've been making.



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