My Son Lars, Designer of Festive Holiday Decor

Remember how my 13-year-old son Lars took the Advanced Drawing EQ7 software class with Barb Vlack at Quilt Week over the summer?  Well, we need a new tree skirt for one of our Christmas trees, and I asked Lars to design one for me in EQ7.  This is what he came up with:

48" Diameter Christmas Tree Skirt, Designed by Lars

Hmmm...  Joy to the world, anyone????  I think it looks like that German Krampus devil that supposedly comes to punish all the bad kids who ended up on Santa's Naughty List:

See the resemblance?  Anyway, back to the drawing board, because that creepy dude is NOT going under my Christmas tree!

This is more of what I had in mind:
48" Diameter Tree Skirt, Designed by Mom

The fabrics are not to scale and the color is a little off since they are snapshots taken with my phone rather than scanned images, but you get the general idea.  I wonder if this is too ambitious to try to make before Christmas?  It's for the Christmas tree in my kitchen, which is decorated with ornaments that look like candy, gingerbread men, toys, and brightly colored balls.  It has a blue star on top.  I have novelty print fabrics with Christmas cookies, peppermint candies, hot chocolate, and some pretty blue fabrics with snowflakes, as well as a red, green and pink stripe fabric that reminds me of peppermint sticks that I'm planning for the binding. 

Now that I drew this lovely tree skirt on the computer, I wonder if I can figure out how to actually MAKE it?

I'm going to link up with Design Wall Monday at Patchwork Times and with Anything Goes Monday at Stitch By Stitch.

FrankenWhiggish Rose Quilt Design Continues to Evolve

FrankenWhiggish Rose, Current Fave Design
Ah, EQ7, my virtual design wall -- how do I love thee?!  You may remember that I posted a photo of my first completed FrankenWhiggish Rose needle turned applique block back in mid October.  I did not have an entire quilt in mind when I started on that block -- I combined several different applique patterns to come up with a block that would be suitable for learning needle turn applique, incorporating different sizes and shapes of inside and outside points, curves, bias stems, reverse applique, and stuffed berries.  I knew I would be spending a lot of time hand stitching the block, so I put in the time up front to ensure that the design would appeal to me aesthetically.  The applique itself was a technical challenge for me, but I threw in a design challenge as well -- I wanted to create something with a country French vibe that would tie in with the mood and color scheme of my kitchen and family room drapery fabric:
Monado by Vervain, Havana colorway
This is the finished applique block:
Completed 16" FrankenWhiggish Rose Applique Block
I was really pleased with how the first block came out, and decided to make "some more of them" for a lap quilt that would live in the family room for sofa snuggling.  I cut out lots of yellow petals and I have been appliqueing them to coral red petals, assembly line style, for the past few weeks, still having no idea how I was going to use these blocks.

So today I fired up the EQ7 software and started playing around with different layouts.  I primarily wanted to figure out how many FrankenWhiggish Rose blocks I would need to prevent myself from wasting time making too many petals!

In these designs, I am using an imported photo of my one finished applique block and combining that with the sashing, border and block designs in the EQ7 software in order to preview some of the different quilts I could create using this block.  This is the second runner up:
Second Runner Up Design

...And this is my current favorite:
Favorite!  (Click to make the photo larger)

This quilt would finish at 74 1/4" x 74 1/4", which is on the generous side for a couch throw quilt but still okay, I think.  Those measurements would be BEFORE quilting and laundering, so the real quilt would finish a bit smaller.  The border blocks would be 7 1/4" square, so I should be able to do those pieced blocks without too much trouble.  Why do I like this design better than the first one?  I can't say for sure.  I really like the repeated Xs and plusses in the applique block, sashing posts and pieced border blocks.  I spent an hour or two playing around with different layouts and alternate blocks before I came up with this design, and I will probably play around with it some more before I commit to it 100%, but this will be the basic idea.

So that means I need a total of nine appliqued blocks (one down, eight more to go) and twenty of those pieced border blocks for this quilt.  I'm even more excited to make them now that I have a plan!

I'm linking up with Design Wall Monday at Patchwork Times as well as Anything Goes Monday at Stitch By Stitch.  Have a great week, everyone!

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