An Epic Adventure!
If you are an avid Instagram fan/stalker like me you may have seen several amazing pictures and posts about Travelling Quilt Bees under #travellingquiltbee #travellingquilts and about 100 variations! These are just a few of my favorites....
The idea is not to dissimilar to a traditional bee but instead of having one month where you are the queen and everyone makes 1 block each for you and you receive them that month, you make a starter block send it off and don't see your quilt for a whole year!! Scary right??!
You pick a theme, color palette, fabric choices or ideas, create a mood board or add any details you think will help the rest of the group understand your vision and put it all in a journal of some kind for each member to add to each month. Make your starter block or blocks and send it to the first person on the list - they are always the person you send to every month so you know who you are getting from and where it is going. In July of last year I joined a fab group of ladies on Instagram and we started our very own UK Travelling Quilt Bee.
I found this picture, it is Melissa from My Fabric Relish, version of the feathers from the beautiful Dream Catcher Quilt in Love Patchwork and Quilting issue 32, I fell in love with it immediately and just knew that my quilt would be centered around this image. I did some research, made some mood boards, started sourcing fabrics and got on my merry way....
As usual with me deciding which fabrics I wanted to start with took an absolute age to work out, eventually I settled on the below, a mixture of April Rhodes for Art Gallery, Moda and Kona Solids for my first feather and got to work.
I hadn't quite decided if I wanted to make the full Dream Catcher Quilt, just the feather section or just 1 or 2 feathers for the final quilt but decided that in the interest of time and getting my starter blocks ready to send I would just make a little bit of everything that I was thinking of and work out the actual layout/design at a later stage.
I added borders to the feather block in a solid burnt orange because I wanted to emphasize and enhance the prints I had used as well as making it clear to the other Bee members the color palette I was after. By this time I was strongly leaning towards an Atec/Tribal vibe for this quilt so expanded my research into these areas and added some Flying Geese blocks.
Love Patchwork and Quilting (I swear I am not being paid to advertise) had a freebie last year called 50 Block Designs for 5" Charm Squares, I went through that and found this fab block made up of staggered Flying Geese which I added to the side. They sort of made me think of a row of a little tribal tepee village or maybe mountains and sunsets, either way I think they were a great addition and I was really happy with the outcome.
With both the blocks and the journal complete I said goodbye to my little quilt for a whole year and posted it on to the lovely Karen and eagerly stalked the postman until Abigail from Cut and Alter's quilt arrived as she was my first that I would be adding to. There is lot of ground to cover with this Travelling Quilt so I will be splitting it in to a couple of posts and I really hope you will come back to join me and read about the rest of the journey.
If you have been involved in a Travelling Quilt Bee, are currently in one or are looking to start/join one I would love to hear from you please feel free to leave a comment or email me.