First of all, I would like to wish you a very Merry Christmas. I hope that you are able to be with friends, family, and even possibly find some moments of peaceful solitude and joy.
I am excited to report in with progress on the Fox Wholecloth Quilt today. My goal is to have the quilt complete before the end of the year (eek!). I took stock of all the Kona Astral fabric I had available, and I was able to piece together a quilt top that is approximately 70″ x 94″ and a quilt backing that is approximately 75″ x 99″. After that quick piecing, it was time to place the foxes on the quilt top.
The foxes are 47″ wide and 20″ tall at the extremes. My husband and I went back and forth about the best size to make the foxes, but based on where the quilt is going to be used, we did not want to make the foxes any bigger as the detail will get lost when viewed. Let me try to explain that a bit!
In our custom expedition truck that we are building (Wabi-Sabi Overland), the bed will run side to side in the back of the apartment. The walls that are built to partition the bed from the dinette and kitchen will allow a view of the quilts on the bed, so we wanted to maximize how the foxes were viewed from a side perspective.
To keep the placement and relationship between the playful foxes the same, when I cut out the silhouettes I left a strip connecting the two foxes. Once I got the majority of both bodies traced onto the quilt top, I finished trimming the foxes so I could complete the outlines.
I loaded the quilt on my longarm horizontally, in the orientation it will be viewed on the bed. To keep the foxes the star of the quilt, my husband and I agreed that I would quilt straight lines for the background (each line above is 94-inches long). Of course I initially thought that 1-inch spacing would be fine, but you know me and my love for quilting density… once I got the quilt loaded I quickly changed to 1/2-inch spacing instead!
I am using Aurifil Forty3 thread in 2725 (Light Wedgewood) which blends in perfectly with the Kona Astral. In the photo above, I used 3 bobbins and had quilted about 23% of the width of the quilt.
Now that I have reached the fox silhouettes, my progress has slowed. It takes time to start and stop the quilting.
And it takes even more time to tie off and bury all the threads.
Once the threads are buried it looks amazing, though! You might also note that I have begun to make the horizontal lines even more dense. My plan is to get to matchstick quilting to help define the “ground” at the base of the foxes and then to quickly go back to 1/2″ spacing for the bottom portion of the background.
I am almost done quilting around the silhouettes, and after I am done with all the stops and starts around them, finishing the background quilting should proceed quickly. I plan to then remove the quilt from my longarm, square it, and bind it. Then I will take the quilt to my domestic and quilt the foxes, starting by outlining them and then filling them in with the quilting motifs my husband and I had previously sketched out.
I still have a week left before the end of the year. I hope I can get the quilt completed. If not, I will have a quilt finish for early next year!