Blue, in all its different hues, is a lovely color but not one I often use in my quilts and never for décor in my home. That changed recently when my husband and I decided to fill in an open space on the second floor above our kitchen table to make a new 8′ x 10′ room—to be used as a quiet place to read or as a guest bedroom for future foreign exchange students. I love to decorate, but rarely get a chance to do so. Excited, I planned to use what I had, buy some things used, and make some small coordinating projects.
First, I needed a color scheme!
I was able to purchase (from a sample sale at work) a navy, medium blue, and cream twin-size quilt called Main Street Square—I designed in the Hometown Summer collection from 2014. Its colors became the color palette for the new room.
The first project I chose was Piccadilly Circus Mini Quilt by Thimble Blossoms.
Determined to use the blues in my stash, I delved into my scraps and yardage to see what I could find. Considering blue is rarely a focal point in my quilts, I found I had accumulated a large stash over the past 25 years from which to pull fabrics for this small project and others I had planned for the room. The pattern calls for 40 charm squares for the wedges, but I used a variety of scraps and FQs.
Note the intense blues in the stack and the fourth row from the left – they added vibrancy while the lights added sparkle.
The mini quilt’s design is a 12-pointed Dresden Plate. I decided to use the same fabric as the background for six of the center sections, alternating with six other light fabrics, so the inner ring was light in value. I chose 12 dark, 12 medium, and 12 light blues for the other rings.
A design wall helped me plan the color placement so the same color values would be not be adjacent. I was careful to keep them in the same order as I sewed. No pressing directions were given; it worked best to alternate the pressing directions. That was easy—I pressed the wedges with background fabric one way, and the other six the opposite direction so seams would nest well.
Once the four strips were sewn in a strip set, I traced the pattern’s wedge-shaped template onto No-Melt Mylar Template Plastic, drew the wedges, and cut them out. The wider end of each wedge was folded right side together, sewn with a 1/4″ seam, turned right side out, and pressed. A Hold It Precision Stiletto helped make a sharp point as did trimming the seam more narrow near the point and pressing the seam open.
Once the wedges were sewn together, I centered and appliquéd them as a unit to the background using monofilament thread and a small blanket stitch. I sewed close to the raw edge in the center to secure it.
To make the center, I placed two layers of the chosen fabric, RS together, planning to fussy cut the top layer. I used a Karen Kay Buckley Bigger Perfect Circle, close to the size of the pattern’s circle template, and drew a circle around a spiral design with a small flower in the center. After cutting the two circles 1/4″ beyond the drawn line, I sewed on the drawn line, trimmed to 1/8″, turned the unit right side out, used a Point 2 Point Turner to smooth the edges, and appliquéd the circle to the center overlapping raw edges of the wedges. I used monofilament thread to stitch in the ditch in the seams between the wedges and on out to edges like sun rays.
Since it is 12-1/2″ square, it looks great hung on a 12″ Wire Metal Stand to sit on the night stand or desk.
When planning the color value placement, the darkest fabrics were positioned in the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th rings, and then repeated—so they would spiral around the circle. This was not very successful since the 4th ring was the pointed tips of the wedges; the effect was less than desired.
Other than that, I was pleased with how easy the Piccadilly Circus Mini Quilt was to make and how cute it turned out!
If you are interested in a quilt made with the same block, check out the Thimble Blossoms Piccadilly Circus Quilt!
Please check back soon to see the other projects I made for the Blue Room. I made three more mini quilts for the walls—that still need to be quilted—and a pillow and table runner are in the works. Now if my husband could just finish the room…