I had about a yard of Bella’s Poppy Lind Fabric by Lotta Jansdotter for Windham Fabrics (in orange) left over from the backing on the Pink Tumbling Block Baby Quilt I made about a year ago. When I was pulling orange fabrics for the Orange, Jade, and Cocoa Placemats, I re-discovered this fun fabric in my stash. After completing the placemats, I pulled out the fun trees and figured out how to fussy cut as many of the trees as possible from what I had remaining.
I kept the remaining orange fabrics I had pulled for the placemats on hand. I had also recently purchased 2 yards of Kona Coal, which worked pretty well with the gray trees, and I pulled a few other light gray fabrics for some contrast. With no real plan for how large this quilt was going to turn out or goal in mind, I started by adding borders to each of the tree blocks.
I quickly settled in on making 14″ tall blocks for the top and bottom row and 10″ blocks for the middle row . With that being my only guideline, I kept working on each block.
Once each block was trimmed out, I started with the lowest row and pieced them together. That set the overall width for the remaining two rows, and I carefully trimmed down blocks a bit to make sure each row stayed the same width as the guide row.
At this point it was pretty clear to me that I was going to need to either piece some fun and colorful strips to go between each row or add borders to frame out the rows. Each row measured 46.5″ wide, and if I had just sewn them together at this point the quilt would have been 37″ tall by 46.5″ wide, which felt a bit odd. 🙂 My husband had been checking in on my progress, and about this same time he reminded me of Frans Lanting‘s beautiful National Geographic photographs of trees in the Namibia desert.
If you click on the photograph or title of the photograph above, it will take you an article where Frans describes preparing for and taking this stunning photograph.
After being reminded of the stark and stunning photograph, I wanted to add a bit more orange to the quilt top to help pop the framed trees in the same way the sand dunes lit by morning sunlight highlight the Namibia Trees in Frans Lanting’s photograph.
I really like how the focal point of the quilt top is the center block with the dark Kona Coal gray border. Knowing that I want to bind this quilt with Kona Coal as well, I pre-cut my binding strips and set them aside. Then I had to figure out how to use my remaining fabric to piece together a backing for this quilt which now measures roughly 57″ square. I did not have much of any one fabric other than the Kona Coal, and it took some time and head scratching to make sure I was going to have enough material, but I am pretty pleased with how the backing turned out as well.
Now it’s time to pin baste and think about what quilting pattern I want to use for this quilt.