Ever have that get-out-of-dodge feeling in the cold and snowy winter? Well, if you're looking for an escape into the warm, rich colors of the Southwest, feast your eyes on the visual treat that is Southwest Modern by Kristi Schroeder. Be warned, the photography and clean graphic design of the quilts in this book are stunning. You'll either be hopping on the first plane to the American desert or raiding your stash for solids that reflect the earthy tones of those warm days and cool nights.
It didn't take long for me decide I needed to make a mini of one of the quilts from this book. You guys know WARM colors are my style. And planning a mini escape from the cold grey winter via quilt-making was just what the doctor ordered.
I pulled some of my favorite scraps, including the saturated and color-rich Me + You Indah Batiks and a fun stripe print from Pat Bravo's Indie Folk to make a mini version of the Mesa Quilt.
To make a mini Mesa, I sketched the quilt just as one 10" x 12" quilt block in EQ8 (The Electric Quilt Company). Kristi's design breaks down into an oversized rectangular log cabin of sorts. I tried to keep the scale of the mini similar - although it's not exactly the same because I wasn't willing to cut tiny strips at sixteenths of an inch to keep proportions exact to the quilt in the book. Sketching up blocks is pretty quick and easy in EQ8, and it made a great way for me to honor Kristi's unique modern designs on a small scale.
I mentioned on Instagram that I recently bought a new sewing machine. A Juki TL2200QVP Mini from local dealer Sew To Speak. It's a powerful industrial-grade machine suited for quilters and I've been learning how to use it over the past couple weeks. This quilt design was a SUPER way for me to test my scant 1/4" skills (read more: Scant 1/4" tutorial series) and accuracy on my new machine with so many small pieces to match up.
I'm happy to report also that if I ever had any question on how to thread this machine, that problem is totally solved with how many thread changes I had while quilting this mini. lol I love the color gradation of the thread along with the fabric. I even added a little hand quilting, inspired by Shannon Fraser.
I took this pic on a white fur rug because I wanted you to see that the background solid I used for this mini is actually the softest little pink color. I adore it. Definitely need to add some soft palette color solids to my stash.
I'm gonna keep this mini finished raw - a la Suzy Quilts Mini Mojo style.
Lastly, I wanted to mention that I had the opportunity to have drinks with Kristi at Spring Quilt Market in June. At the time, the book was not out yet, but her enthusiasm for modern quilts and the area of the country where she grew up was clear. It's been such pleasure to make one of her designs knowing how truly passionate she is about her work, this book, and making time for travel in life. Cheers Kristi!
Disclosure: This book was sent to me by Lucky Spool Media. Post may contain affiliate links.
Ready to get sewing?
AnneMarie Chany is an author and pattern designer who teeters on both sides of the modern and traditional quilting line. She loves using bright colors and solid fabrics while nodding to traditional blocks.
"all I need is fabric and coffee. and maybe chocolate too. yeah, definitely chocolate."