I have friends who have commissioned me to make several quilted items for them in the past: Fall Placemats (which they use in their home) and Lighthouse Lens Placemats (which became a Christmas gift for family last year). They have now asked me to create a queen size topper quilt for the other side of their family. The quilt will be going to live on the big island of Hawaii at a Cocoa farm when it is finished, so it wasn’t too much of a surprise when they said my previous Cocoa Leaf Medallion Quilt was interesting to them as an inspiration launching point.
One of the early focuses of our discussion was on the colors for the quilt. To our delight, Kona Cotton has a Cocoa brown that is pretty much perfect, and we selected other bright colors with meaning to compliment: Persimmon, Kiwi, Canary, Stratosphere, and Bone (for the background).
My focus over the last day and a half has been to create the cocoa leaf shapes for the quilt top and determine the layout for the quilt top, and I thought I would talk a bit about that process.
I started this quilt by creating new cocoa leaf shapes as compared to the first Cocoa Leaf Medallion quilt because I didn’t want the 2 quilts to be identical. They will obviously be similar enough (as you will see further in the post). I also knew that I wanted the top and bottom border leaf shapes to be larger than the first quilt.
I started by looking at a lot of cocoa leaf images on the internet and then hand drawing and cutting out shapes on paper templates. Because I had already cut a wide cloth piece of Kona Bone to the size I desired for the initial size of the quilt top (~72″ x 92″), I was able to lay the templates on the quilt top to get a feel for if the size I had made was appropriate or going to work.
After getting the paper templates created, I then traced them onto posterboard and cut the shapes out of the thicker material. Then I used the posterboard as a template for the fabric and cut about 1/2″ to 1″ larger than the marked line from the fabric. I then placed the posterboard template back on the fabric and ironed the excess fabric around the edge of the template.
I am still loving my Oliso iron, and I have gone to using a dry iron. If I need “steam” or a bit of water, I now use a spray bottle. It’s not that the Oliso was having trouble with water, it’s that the water in my area is just really hard. Even the filtered water I was using quickly built up minerals in the iron.
Once I had all the leaf shapes pressed, I could then play with the layout for the quilt top. The fun part! The center medallion swirl was determined early in the design, but my clients and I wanted to play with the border color arrangement a bit. Right now this is the layout I think we are leaning toward. Time will tell if it changes!