Kaleidoscope Plus
2018 Finished Quilts, Blog Hop

Kaleidoscope Plus {Modern Plus Sign Book Blog Hop}

When my friend Cheryl from Meadow Mist Designs told me that she was working on a book proposal with Paige from Quilted Blooms, I started looking forward to this blog post. Today it is my extreme pleasure, honor, and privilege to tell you about Modern Plus Sign Quilts, the book written by Cheryl Brickey and Paige Alexander as part of the Modern Plus Sign Book Blog Hop!

There are 16 quilt designs in the book, and on each day of the blog hop (full schedule at the end of the post), 2 quilt designs are shared from the book and bloggers (like me!) will be sharing our versions of the featured designs. Along with the designs, the book has historical information and includes more in depth discussion of techniques (like traditional piecing, applique, and foundation paper piecing), making this book contain something for a quilter at any experience level. Also, for each day of the hop, Cheryl and Paige are hosting giveaways on their blogs, so be sure to visit them to learn more!

Kona Cotton in Sky, Lake, Astral, and Ocean

Kona Cotton in Sky, Lake, Astral, and Ocean

When I had the opportunity to select which design I wanted to make as part of the blog hop, my husband and I decided that the quilt I made would be one of several I plan to make this year for us to keep as bed quilts. Bed quilt in this sense means that I am making it for a 48-inch wide bed we are putting in our custom expedition vehicle, so we settled on a goal of finished quilt top sizes of 68-inches wide by 88-inches long. Pulling from the blue tile we purchased to use as an accent inside the vehicle, we selected Robert Kaufman Kona Cotton in Sky, Lake, Astral, and Ocean (above).

Kaleidoscope Plus - photo credit of C&T Publications

Kaleidoscope Plus – photo credit of C&T Publications

One look through the quilts in the book and my heart was set on making Kaleidoscope Plus. The pattern calls for 5 fabrics, and I only had 4 to work with, so the first thing I did was spend time evaluating how I wanted to place the colors.

I instantly knew that I was going to make the Dark to Light colorway option, and thankfully my husband agreed (or knew) without me doing more than asking him which of the two he preferred.

Kaleidoscope Plus

Kaleidoscope Plus

Be still my heart! The quilt looks even better on our real bed in our bedroom than I had hoped!

To achieve the crisp precision of the points in the Kaleidoscope Plus quilt pattern, the majority of the quilt top is paper pieced. I was able to get all of the paper piecing completed before I left for QuiltCon, although the quilt top was not finished when I left (which was a soft goal or milestone I had hoped to meet).

Hawthorne Threads Aurifil Order

Matching Aurifil Thread Order

My husband and I sleep under quilts that I have pieced, but I have not quilted any of the bed quilts we own. So another huge aspect of this project for me was to quilt as much love and care into it as I could possibly muster. With that in mind, I bought a LOT of 50wt Aurifil thread to match the selected Kona Cotton colors to be sure that I was not going to run out in the middle! I purchased 3 large spools of 50wt 2740 (Dark Cobalt) to match Kona Ocean, 2 large spools of 50wt 2725 (Light Wedgewood) to match Kona Astral, 1 large spool of 50wt 2710 (Light Robins Egg) to match Kona Lake, and 1 large pool of 50wt 2612 (Arctic Sky) to match Kona Sky.

Quilting Plan

Quilting Plan

My husband was a huge part of this process. I digitally doodled out many options for different quilting motifs and areas, and we discussed what we liked and did not like. Ultimately, he selected or suggested the motifs that I quilted in each area of the quilt after we auditioned lots of possibilities.

Kaleidoscope Plus

Kaleidoscope Plus

In the background surrounding the pieced design, I quilted a Digital Circuit Board motif, and we are enchanted by the texture and the way it looks from different angles and views.

Kaleidoscope Plus - Post Wash Quilting Detail

Kaleidoscope Plus – Post Wash Quilting Detail

And the quilting in the pieced areas went basically exactly to the quilting plan doodle I shared earlier. In all, I spent over 30 hours quilting this quilt in the last week. Due to coming home from QuiltCon and being under the weather, I worked on this quilt right up to the deadline of publishing the post. I put the final hand stitches into the binding at 9pm on Monday night: cutting it very close (by my standards) to being done in time for the real deadline of sharing the quilt with you!

Kaleidoscope Plus - Prewash Quilting Detail

Kaleidoscope Plus – Prewash Quilting Detail

I did all of the quilting on my longarm by hand (there is nothing computerized about my machine). I did mark guide points and use a ruler for the extensive amount of dot-to-dot quilting that I did in the piecing. I used the Clover White Marking Fine Pen, which erases with heat (not an affiliate link).

When I took the quilt off of my longarm, I asked my husband to come in and look it over with me to look for any areas that I might have left unquilted. I said it as a joke, but he actually spotted an area at one edge of the quilt that I had not finished off! I placed my Quilting Jetgirl label at that spot so that I will always remember the 4 small lines I quilted on my Juki to fill in the space.

Kaleidoscope Plus

Kaleidoscope Plus

Kaleidoscope Plus from the book finishes at 63 1/2″ square, so I modified the size of the finishing borders to upsize the quilt to my desired 68 1/2″ wide by 88 1/2″ long (I used 7 1/2″ wide side borders and 17 1/2″ wide top borders). After quilting and squaring, the quilt was 67 1/2″ wide by 87″ long (~1.5% and 1.7% shrinkage) and after the first wash the quilt is 65 1/2″ wide by 83″ long (~4.4% and 6.2% shrinkage). I actually think that with a little use it will probably be closer to 4% shrinkage overall.

Kaleidoscope Plus

Kaleidoscope Plus

One of the wonderful aspects of all the quilting is how the the design still shines through when viewed from the backing (solid Kona Cotton Ocean)! I know many people have asked if a quilt quilted this densely is stiff. I used Quilter’s Dream Dream Green batting, and the quilt is not stiff. There are areas where the piecing is more stiff (which I avoided when quilting), but overall the texture of the quilt both before and after being washed is delightful.

I will say that the only time I have really struggled with a really stiff quilt is when I have done very dense matchstick quilting in only one direction. This is not at a matchstick level of density (I consider matchstick quilting every 1/8″ or closer), and there is movement and a change in quilting direction across the quilt.

Kaleidoscope Plus

Kaleidoscope Plus

I just love how the plus signs are still apparent from the back with the lighter colored thread and dense quilting. And how about the fun secondary design of the star with the color removed? There is so much for me to love about this quilt. It will be one of the many on our bed for the foreseeable future!

Kaleidoscope Plus

Kaleidoscope Plus

If you would like to make a Kaleidoscope Plus quilt and are especially drawn to my blue color palette, you can re-create this exactly by using:

  • Astral for Dark Gray,
  • Ocean for Light Gray,
  • Lake for White, and
  • Sky for Dark Blue and the Blue Print.

I backed the quilt in Ocean and bound it using Astral.

Thank you so much for visiting today and sharing in my joy at my new quilt and celebrating Cheryl and Paige’s book, Modern Plus Sign Quilts! If you would like to purchase a book, you can order a signed copy from either Cheryl or Paige’s Etsy stores, via C&T Publishing, or via Amazon at the links below:


Monday, March 12th
Cheryl @Meadow Mist Designs
Paige @Quilted Blooms

Tuesday, March 13th
Soma @Whims and Fancies
Ann @Brown Paws Quilting
Kitty @Night Quilter
Sophie @Luna Lovequilts
Afton @Quilting Mod
Shelley @The Carpenters Daughter Who Quilts

Wednesday, March 14th
Jayne @Twiggy and Opal
Jen @A Dream and a Stitch
Abigail @Cut & Alter
Yvonne @Quilting Jetgirl
Sandra @mmm! quilts
Karen @Run Sew Fun

Thursday, March 15th
Linda @Flourishing Palms
Bernie @Needle and Foot
Liz @Savor Every Stitch
Stacey @Stacey In Stitches
Michelle @From Bolt to Beauty
Patty @Elm Street Quilts
Melanie @A Bit of Scrap Stuff Blog

Friday, March 16th
Myra @Busy Hands Quilts
Izzy @Dizzy Quilts
Ruth @Charly and Ben’s Crafty Corner
Christa @Christa Quilts

Monday, March 19th
Jessica @Quilty Habit
Cindy @Hyacinth Quilt Designs
Jennifer @The Inquiring Quilter
Julie @The Crafty Quilter

Tuesday, March 20th
Tish @Tish N Wonderland
Judy @Sew Some Sunshine
Emily @The Darling Dogwood
Wanda @Wanda’s Life Sampler
Karen @Tu-Na Quilts, Travels, and Eats
Katherine @Sew Me Something Good

Wednesday, March 21st
Anja @Anja Quilts
Kate @Smiles from Kate
Sue @Sevenoaks Street Quilts
Carole @From My Carolina Home
Alison @Little Bunny Quilts

Thursday, March 22nd
Debbie @Esch House Quilts
Laura @Slice of Pi Quilts
Beth @Cooking Up Quilts
Janice @Color Creating and Quilting
Joanne @Quilts by Joanne

Friday, March 23rd
Cheryl @Meadow Mist Designs
Paige @Quilted Blooms

Linking up with Let’s Bee Social and Finish It Friday.

86 thoughts on “Kaleidoscope Plus {Modern Plus Sign Book Blog Hop}

  1. Audrey says:

    This is so SO good. If there was something in the world that would convert me to blue, this would be it! 🙂

  2. Lisa says:

    Hi Yvonne: I love this quilt so much. You picked the perfect colours and colour combination and the quilting is exquisite…and aren’t you generous you told us which colours you used so we can make one too! It really is truly beautiful!

  3. Patty says:

    This is an amazing quilt – I just love the fabric choices and the quilting is out of this world!

  4. adreamandastitch says:

    Stunning, as usual. 🙂 It is so cool that you have made one for yourself start to finish. I think every quilter should have at least a few of those.

  5. Helen says:

    Ah ! I accidentally deleted my comment . Here we go again . I love this , all my favourite kona blues , ocean , astral , sky and lake. All my favourite friends. And your quilting ! How few people could stand the scrutiny of their quilt being reversed . There’s been such thought and planning gone into that quilting . And lastly yiur bedroom . Do you use a stunt bedroom ? My bedroom would be neither tidy enough nor large enough to get such good photos !

  6. Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful! I love the picture that shows the amazing texture from the circuit board quilting. And the pictures showing the quilting from the back are gorgeous too.

  7. Absolutely stunning, Yvonne! I love that it is for YOUR bed. And that your husband was so involved in the design process! You’ll both proudly enjoy this quilt every night for many, many years. Congratulations on such a wonderful finish!

  8. Mary Furber says:

    Love the blue! What a wonderful quilt. Enjoy sleeping under it.

  9. Karen says:

    I was so excited to see your take on this pattern and it did not disappoint. Brilliant colors and fantastic quilting.

  10. Anne Boundy says:

    It is stunning and well worth all the effort and time you have spent! You should be very proud of all your efforts and for including your husband in decisions along the way so he feels part of the quilt too as it will be on your bed for the rest of time!! 😀

  11. Kate says:

    Wow! It turned out beautifully!

  12. Danice G says:

    What an awesome quilt Yvonne. So brilliant and colorful. And your quilting… perfect. Your book is definitely on my wish list.

  13. Oh Yvonne, you have certainly outdid yourself with this one, you turned a wonderful design into something very special with your clever use of colour and such fantastic quilting. Congratulations on a stunning version of the pattern. I liked the pattern before but after seeing your version I have to add it to my to do list.

  14. What a special quilt to have for your bed. Gorgeous color, pattern, and quilting. Excellent finish Yvonne!

  15. Ruth says:

    I was wondering what you were going to do with the blue aurifil and now I know – lovely result. I really like your quilting diagram too!

  16. thedarlingdogwood says:

    This is absolutely stunning, Yvonne! I have been wondering what you were planning with those rich blues and now I know! What a beautiful quilt for your traveling bed!

  17. Cindy Shelley says:

    This is so gorgeous!!!!

  18. Wow, just wow! This was already was favorite quilt in Cheryl and Paige’s book, but your version of it makes me want to buy the book (and I’m trying REALLY hard to not be wily-nily in my quilting purchases these days!). I’m wondering if the paper-pieced pattern is printed on a pull-out sheet that works best to take to a copy shop to be copied. Take care, Mary.

  19. This quilt is a work of art! Love the colour palette you chose. And the quilting makes the design simply pop! Beautifully done!

  20. Jess Pugh says:

    What a beautiful work of art! Gorgeous color palette!

  21. Pat says:

    Wow! I love that quilt! The colors are the colors I love and your quilting is spectacular! I especially love that your husband worked with you to decide on the quilting. You should be very proud!

  22. Heide says:

    Looks stunning!

  23. inquiringquilter says:

    Oh Yvonne this is so you, and so gorgeous! The color placement, the quilting, everything–perfection!

  24. Sophie says:

    Gorgeous quilt ! The picture of the quilt in your bedroom is amazing !

  25. Elizabeth E. says:

    I was at my son’s house in Texas when you published this post, but I wanted to come back to it to comment on it, s the technique and details of the post are really helpful and informative. But that’s not the best part–the quilt is! Wow–did you paint your bedroom after you decided on that quilt, for it’s a perfect match and oh, so, blue. That quilt really shines in that setting, highlighting the intricate quilting and perfect piecing.
    What I love the most is the collaborative nature of the quilt, as well as the engineer mind shining through it all. It’s lovely, so thank you for this post! (And PS–you don’t have to reply to this.)

  26. inquiringquilter says:

    What a lovely version! I love the color choices and how wonderfully it goes with your decor! The quilting is perfect. It’s so cool that your husband helped you with those decisions! You must work so well together.

  27. I know I’ve already said I love it on IG, but I have to say it again. This is so beautiful!

  28. usairdoll says:

    Holy cow Jetgirl! What an amazing and gorgeous quilt! Love your layout of the blues and your quilting is beyond words! Beautiful! It’s awesome that your husband takes an interest in your quilting and participates as well! Great job! Thanks for sharing!

  29. Sarah Ruiz says:

    This quilt is stunning and really makes me want to go get the book — so mission accomplished on all fronts, I think! 🙂

  30. This is a great quilt. Love the blues. And the quilting……wow….

  31. This is such a beautiful finish for your bedroom. I love how you chose to quilt it. I still can’t wrap my head around (visually) how you quilted the areas outside of the pluses. That circuit-board gridwork is amazing and adds so much texture and movement.

  32. Melody A. says:

    Just Gorgeous!!! amazing amazing quilting!! I hope you are feeling better now! take care and Happy Sewing from Iowa

  33. This really looks fabulous in your room, Yvonne.
    May I borrow your husband when I get stuck and need help working out quilting designs?

  34. Jasmine @ Quilt Kisses says:

    Yvonne, this quilt is stunning and it looks spectacular in your bedroom. Great job!

I really appreciate the time and thought you take to comment, and I look forward to conversing with you. :)