Monday, November 14, 2016

Heartland Blog Tour

Hello, Hi, Hej, Hei!
Welcome to my day on the Heartland blog tour,  it's very exciting to be sewing side by side with such fabulous makers and with the  HeĆ„rtland Fabric line by Pat Bravo  (Art Gallery Fabrics). Not only has it been a pleasure to use such gorgeous fabric but it's been fun to discover its versatility.

Before we get into the nitty-gritty details- let me encourage you to check out all the makers and their creations as this wonderful event is now in it's 2nd week. The complete list  (just in case you missed them),  is at the end of this post, all with live links, so no excuses..... you will have to wait in real time to see what happens through the rest of this week, with Christopher ( the tattooed quilter) taking the lead tomorrow.

Story of my life lately; come up with what I think is a great idea and then change my mind. Sometimes the change is organic and sometimes it's situational. But what I've learned lately is not to fight it. Change is inevitable, and when it's heading your way, you have to embrace it.

I was so excited to get some of this gorgeous fabric that initially I though I'd make a quilt. (For those of you laughing right now, hold on to that thought). Immediately after settling on the quilt idea,  I went on an amazing trip to the land of fashion and food- Italy- and came back with so many more ideas, one of which was, why not try a wearable quilt. Really, why the heck not!

I live in a place that gets snow in the winter. My family, always trying to be the best stewards of the one planet we all live on, keep our house on the "cool" side during these winter months (my kids say cold, I say cool, tomato, tomahto). I have quilts on the couch and quilts on the beds.  With that thought in mind, I chose the Circular Vest Pattern, from Threads Magazine.  It is a pattern that I have been wanting to try (for a while). It's  also quick, easy and best of all it's free.  There is a minor amount of measuring and math, but if I can do it so can you. Best of all, it falls right into my sewing and quilting happy place;  a pattern that is as versatile as it is stylish and one, if you have the time, can be customized, which is exactly what I did.

Back shoulder details with inset organic shapes in Unn Cross Silver.
Droppar Moondust for the vest body and Trekant Rows Candid for the binding.

Front details:  Inset organic shapes wrap to the vest front.

Fabrics used : Art Gallery, 100% quilting cotton from the Heartland Line by Pat Bravo:
Heartland: Droppar Moondust, Trekant Rows Candid, Unn Cross Silver.  I used a pre-washed light weight silk, tencel and cotton lining and bias cut the binding because the pattern is basically a big circle and you need the stretch. The pattern calls for the binding to be applied by machine but this one is attached inside and out by hand, allowing for further ease around the circular vest. All the fabrics were washed prior to construction assuring the completed project will remain true to size and that the finished garment can be machine laundered when complete.

Thread used:
Aurifil threads in 50 wt, 100% cotton for the piecing and 28 weight, 100% cotton for the quilting. The quilting is kept simple and compliments the circular design.

Piecing and quilting details were inspired by a trip to Scandinavia several years ago, homage to the roots of Pat's Heartland Fabric line. I kept the piecing simple, organic and repetitive, limiting it to just the shoulder/collar.

Using a thick paper template and a freehand sketched organic shape,  I transferred the shape to the shoulder/collar area of the Droppar fabric by tracing using a water soluble blue fabric marker. This was repeated 9 times, paying attention to the spacing between the shapes. The design was then cut out leaving a 1/4" seam allowance. For stability, the Heartland Droppar fabric was fused to Freezer paper before starting.

In order to keep the curves smooth, small notches were cut in the curved area and repeated 9 more times. The freezer paper was then removed and the seam allowance pressed to the wrong side easing the fabric through the curves. Unn Cross in Silver was then glue basted to the wrong side. The inset pieces were then sewn in place using the pressed seam allowances as the sewing guide. Glue basting is critical- keeping the fabric in place while sewing through all the tight curves.

piecing, binding and quilting details
Finally,  the binding compliments the other fabrics with its pops of yellow and pink along with the grays found in the Unn Cross and the Blue-green found in the Droppar Moondust (vest body).

The quilting is linear but is not stitched as you might expect, top-to-bottom. It's actually stitched from the center (mid shoulder blade) in quadrants, which gives some play across the shoulders in a fabric that is not otherwise stretchy.
Quilting details. The linear stitching originates from mid shoulder blade (between the 2 bound arm openings) and is straight stitched in quadrants.

And because we're all having so much fun, I do have a small give away of some fabric I requested but did not have the opportunity to incorporate into my design.... (change is GOOD!). It's all contained in a simple drawstring bag (pattern modified to use fabric at hand from the Heartland collection).

If you'd like a chance to win this drawstring bag with some of this awesome new fabric, please leave a comment here on this post. Please use your fabric to create unique projects and make sure you let Pat know what you're making by using the following hashtags on social media. #patbravodesigns  #heartlandfabrics  #artgalleryfabrics  @patbravodesign on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.

If you want to keep up with me, I'm here and on IG @spontaneousthreads.

Finally, a big thank you to Amy Friend for organizing this fun event and to Pat Bravo and Art Gallery for the gorgeous Heartland fabric and if you're looking for a fabulous quilt to make with these fabrics Amy has designed a beautiful one just for you!

Here is your stellar line-up of past and future makers, go see what they have been creating.

November 7: Debbie
November 8: Jess and
November 9: Jade
November 10: Amanda
November 11: Kari
Weekend break for sewing and creating
November 14: Me
November 15: Christopher ( the and the other amazing makers
November 16-18:
                        Kerry (
                        Nicole (
                        Krista (

photo credits: Ruchi Brunvand (@rbrunvand) (Yes, that's me in the pictures- shocking, I know!)