Black and Gold Logs and Lillies 6, 7, 8, 9, 10

Black and Gold Logs and Lillies 6

There’s an idea!

Black and Gold Logs and Lillies 7

Don’t piece a Log Cabin quilt … just quilt it!

Black and Gold Logs and Lillies 8

Something to think about though … what colours would you use on the quilt top if you did piece it?

Black and Gold Logs and Lillies 9

Something to consider is doubling up Log Cabin quilt designs with the quilting on the whole cloth back.

Black and Gold Logs and Lillies 10

I don’t think that will happen this side of New year, but it could prove to be interesting!

More Log Cabin designs mid week, next week.

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Anita’s Q’n’A 13

Anita's Q'n'A 13

Love it.

I think it would look great on the back too, with all the applique outlined with quilting, and the background filled in with cross hatching

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After Pompeii OP 25

After Pompeii OP 25

I love the way Double Wedding Ring blocks form diamonds when placed side by side, and they work even better when the blocks are on point.

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White Quilting 9

White Quilting 9

The first time I created a white out on a quilt by somehow deleting all colour from the applique blocks, it was the biggest mistake I had made for quite a while, but I loved the result. This is one of many designs I now have in an assortment of project files with the applique all in white.

I think if I made one of them I would use many shades of white rather than one fabric, but keep them all as plain and white as possible. It would be a challenge just finding the fabrics … much quicker to go into a quilt shop and pick one fabric and buy several meters, or yards, depending on which country you are in at the time!

The quilting I would use just one white, though even then I would have to choose between thick or thing thread!

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Virtual Challenge 1

Probably the first challenge is to find the time, but if you beat that challenge, here goes!


Select a block  from the

Electric Quilt Library … Classic Pieced … Antique Mosaics.


Add at least four seam lines, then play with colour placement.  If you are brave, also delete some lines, before or after you play with colour placement.


One thing to keep in mind when playing with colour is that colour gets a lot of the credit while contrast does a lot of the work.


I selected the first Antique Mosaic block, Mosaic  No 1.

Challenge 1a

The grey version from the library.

Challenge 1b

The colour version from the library.

Challenge 1c

My colour fabric choices from the default palette.

Challenge 1d

I have altered the colour placement. I like it much better like that.

Now to start some modifications. Here are my results.

Challenge 1e

Some lines added to the original block.

I rather like my new version.

Challenge 1g

Two alternative fabric placements.

Challenge 1f

And some lines deleted!

If you start with the same block as me, and work out how to make the changes I did, your next challenge is to then choose another Antique Mosaic and make your own modifications!

After that, keep altering Antique Mosaic blocks from the EQ library.

My next challenge will be to work out how to start a FaceBook group!



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Annie Clover’s Curved Illusions 14, 15, 16

Annie Clover's Curved Illusions 14

Love it.

Annie Clover's Curved Illusions 15

Love this one two.

Annie Clover's Curved Illusions 15

Three out of three!

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Baker’s Dozen 10, 11, 12, 13, 14

Baker's Dozen 10

I am going to a quilt display today, so thought I would share a few extra designs so you don’t miss out.

Baker's Dozen 11

I might have to do the same tomorrow as I will be attending the second day as well.

Baker's Dozen 12

I might even try yo do it every time I go to a display of any sort.

Baker's Dozen 13

My favourite for the day is the one above.

Baker's Dozen 14

I hope you enjoyed your mini virtual quilt exhibition.

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Virtual Quilting and a Question

9 Patch with Corners

This blog is a result of time I spent playing with design in a quilt program called Electric Quilt. I had started redrawing block designs during the ten lesson sampler quilt class which got me totally hooked on making quilts, but that early design work, like all previous designing for other craft work, was all done on paper.

I bought Electric Quilt 5 after trying two other programs designed for quilters. First problem was making time to learn the program. I found that I learned best by trying to draw quilts I saw in magazines, at quilt shows, and even some of those pencil sketches I had made on scraps of paper.

With some practice drawing pieced blocks was easy enough, but I love applique. Learning to draw applique with pencils and paper was hard enough, so there was a lot of practice required to learn to draw in Electric Quilt … particularly back with EQ5. Part of the learning process was to learn to sit and play with the program as often as possible. Too long between play sessions and I had to start all over again.

One thing I had to my advantage was I always  asked myself one question over and over again.

What if … ?

What if I delete some lines in a pieced block. What if I made an applique shape short and fat instead of long and skinny? Then add an extra line  or two in a pieced block, or more shapes to the applique? What if I add one corner of a Four Patch block to the solid corners of a Nine Patch block. (Note to self … must make some time to play with that idea again!)

When adding colour to the shapes I keep wanting to see what would happen if I swapped the dark and light contrasts around, or add some spot of colour contrast outside the colour combination I started with. I do the same when playing with the blocks in a quilt design. Swap Block A with Block B, then add another block to the equation.

Over time I got to the point that I could stop thinking about how to make the changes, which meant I could spend more time changing block designs, or starting new ones , and then more time playing with block placement and colour combinations in quilt designs.

The better I got at using the program the more times I asked myself that question … What if … ?

Over the years, and progressing from Electric Quilt 5 through Electric Quilt 6 and Electric Quilt 7 I put together a huge collection of quilt designs. I also had a huge collection of blocks. When I started using Electric Quilt 8 I asked myself  that question …

What if … ?

What if I sorted out my block collection? Crossing designs, nine patch, formal florals, four patch, pieced and applique houses and fans, some named, most not. Where to start?

The pieced blocks were basically in their categories according to the grid they were drafted on. I do save blocks to My Library often, but my library was pretty chaotic, to say the least. Sorting pieced blocks took a while, but wasn’t too much of a head ache, though my math skills were tested at times trying to make sure all of the more complicated blocks were in the right category.

Applique blocks were saved wherever I thought I would find them tomorrow, and that wasn’t a perfect system even for tomorrow! The day after tomorrow I had no hope of finding the block I was looking for, and as I would draw a block in whatever project file I was playing with at any given moment the applique designs were all over the place.

During the clean and tidy up I had a thought … there were a lot of crossed floral designs , what if I put them all together. I sorted them and then added them all to one project file.  I had nearly 200. What if I tried to get it up to 200 exactly? I did, but when I did the recount I had nearly 250. It seems that they were breeding. Another month or two and I thought it would be an ideal time to answer another what if … ?

I had a vague thought that some of the Floral Cross Collection would  make reasonable wreath blocks if I removed the cross centre and added a wreath form. Too easy, and the first cross which lost it’s centre made a lovely wreath even before I added a narrow circle to hold it together. That first was followed by more just with variations of the flower from that first modified crossing design.

(The next ‘what if …’ will be put on memory bank for the future … what if I make the wreath blocks I have drawn into crossed designs?)

Each time I wandered around the garden I would come inside with another idea of a new flower to add to the collection, or new leaves. Some of the leaves suited quite a few different flowers!  I also collected leaves from a variety of floral applique designs.

Many of the crossed designs  were manipulated to make the flowers wider or narrower,  shorter or longer, and most worked both ways. I set out to find out just how many ways were feasible with one flower, and settled on 12 reasonably versatile variations to try sometime soon. Next step is to test out the system on more flowers.

By now I had doubled the  number of Floral Crosses I had to play with, from 250 to 500, and they are still coming.

I asked that question again.

What if  … I could encourage others to use Electric Quilt more often, and see if they can find their own answers to that  question, and build their own collection of crossed designs, Nine Patch, and even Log Cabin variations? I know a lot of people who own Electric Quilt who are almost afraid of the program, and it would be great to know that at least some of those would give my challenges a go.

So … on the first weekend of each month from now on I hope to be able to challenge you to play with Electric Quilt, trying to learn more about the program, so that sometime in the future you will know how to use the program well enough to just play with designs rather than have to try to work out how do do each step. Some challenges will be aimed at those who have little experience, others will be aimed for those who are more experienced.

I am not going to give you many instructions. Part of each challenge is to find the information you need, not what I think you need. Some of us learn better by muddling through by ourselves, but there are manuals, and written lessons and videos available on the Electric Quilt Company website, and I will list some sites worth visiting for more tutorials.

I am also thinking that a private Facebook group might be a handy way of sharing results of the challenge.

The first challenge will be issued next weekend, so I hope you will set aside some time to play.

Please note … You do not have to make the blocks or quilts you design in this series of challenges. The challenge is to learn to use Electric Quilt for any kind of project you may want to do now, or in the future.

Be aware … You may become addicted to playing with quilt designs!

But then, other people are addicted to cross word puzzles, solitaire or games on their computer or phone. I like creating things from all sorts of materials, including quilt fabric, and much prefer making up my own designs rather than using patterns by somebody else.

Posted in Quilt | 12 Comments

Garden Festival 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

Garden Festival 8

Virtual Quilter began 10 years ago today!

Garden Festival 9

It started as a place to share quilt designs I liked enough to save in my Electric Quilt project files, but had no reason to make them. The ones I have made I have not shared as virtual designs … they are in my photo album as real quilts.

Garden Festival 10

There have been over 390,000 page views, plus about 500 followers on social media, email and WordPress.

Garden Festival 11

Since 2008 I have shared 7,260 designs, and have barely made a dent in the number of designs I have saved, but not made! I promised one per day, and have nearly doubled up on that promise.

Garden Festival 12

Thank you all for the company over the last ten years.

Stay tuned for a challenge.


Posted in Quilt | 6 Comments

Less Logs in the Cabin 71, 72, 73, 74, 75

Less Logs in the Cabin 71

Middle of another week already! We went away for two nights, stayed away for five, which may explain why my our week disappeared so quickly.

I love the Courthouse Steps border in the first design.

Less Logs in the Cabin 72

Like the centre of the one above.

Less Logs in the Cabin 73

Another interesting border effect using Courthouse Step blocks. Love the centre too.

Less Logs in the Cabin 74

Very interesting design above.

Less Logs in the Cabin 75

Love the last one.

Today is the last day of ten years of Virtual Quilts … tomorrow will be the first day of the next decade … well, that is the plan at this point in time. Mid week Log Cabin Retreats will continue, but I will be introducing a monthly weekend playtime challenge soon.

Another short break mid week, next week, featuring Log Cabin designs.

Posted in Less Logs in the Cabin, Log Cabin Quilter's Mid Week Retreat, Log Cabin Quilts, Mid Week Retreat, Quilt | Tagged , , | 2 Comments