After sharing my Crop Circles Table Runner with the design bee group in December, I was asked to submit the inspiration photograph for the next challenge. I went through photographs I have taken and even some of my favorite photographs that my husband has taken. In the end I chose a photograph of a butterfly that I took while on vacation in Heron Island, Australia, a few years ago.
After selecting the photograph and having it sent out to the group, I promptly didn’t think about it for over a month. I did have an initial thought about perhaps trying the 6-minute circle technique to approximate some of the organic blue shapes on the butterfly wings. However, when I was ready to start piecing, I took another look at the photograph and was struck by the change in value in the blues along the wing. You know I love that!
So I decided to give reverse applique a try instead. As I am currently wrapping up work on the 3rd bed quilt for Wabi-Sabi Overland, I have scraps of Kona Ocean, Astral, Lake, and Sky readily available to play with. I used a 28mm OLFA rotary cutter to free hand cut an organic shape, and then I used the 5″ OLFA snips to snip around the edges.
Then I gently finger pressed back the edges of the shape beyond the scissor snips and ironed the fold as flat as possible.
Placing a fabric underneath, I then used my sewing machine to top stitch very near the edge of the folded back fabric.
Once I had an assortment of reverse applique blocks in blue pieced on my design wall, I knew I wanted to frame them in a black or near black to finish the mini quilt top. I chose Kona Pepper instead of black and used reverse applique to inset the blue spots into the Kona Pepper as well.
The mini quilt top measures 12 1/2″ high by 19″ wide. I purposefully worked from a lighter to darker blue across the mini quilt top just like the blue in the wings of the butterfly deepens from bottom to top.
I held the mini quilt top up to a window to get a stained glass view and to show how the seams look as well.
I really love how the mini quilt top came together and although I am itching to finish it, I have a few other deadline projects I need to complete first.
I am in love with reverse applique now! Have you tried reverse applique?
Design Bee Group
I also have permission to share what others in the design bee made based on the inspiration image:
I am already looking forward to receiving the next photo and seeing what everyone creates!