My latest quilt pattern My Library Quilt is officially in my shop. This quilt pattern came to me once our home library quilt was complete; it was inspired by the Gryffindor Common room. I wanted a quilt to reflect how much reading has been a part of our family life.
A bookshelf quilt has been on my bucket list for as long as I can remember but never did I think I would write my own bookshelf quilt pattern! However, I realized I didn’t want all the time involved for some of the bookcase patterns I had seen. I wanted something a little easier and I wanted something with books “artfully arranged.” I always sit in our library with a cup of coffee so the mug is the perfect personal touch!
However, as much as I wanted to make MY own library into a quilt-I wanted this to be as modular as possible so YOU could make this YOUR own library quilt. The quilt blocks are all the same size and interchangeable! If you don’t want the mug, then you don’t have to have it. If you favor one block more than the other, then you can use that one. The letters are applique (don’t worry, I offer tips and tricks on how to applique) so if you don’t want the letters-you can just omit them. The options really are endless. I think one of the best things about this pattern is that I will get to see how each quilter makes their own library quilt.
If there was ever a quilt made for custom quilting-this was it. I have worked with Lin from LinQuilts before and I knew she was the quilter I wanted to long-arm this quilt. I had a vision and she not only met it-she SURPASSED it. Our home library has bead board backing and Lin actually quilted the bead board onto the background of the quilt! It looks fantastic and adds so much depth.
I wanted the spines of the books to be different thicknesses so that it really looked like a book collection. I also wanted some thicker books because I knew this was the spot for custom quilting, embroidery, or hand quilting. Lin immediately saw this opportunity as well and added the most lovely touches.
Once again my goal of making this a faster than typical bookshelf quilt was met in using applique for the words. Piecing words is quite time consuming and can make a nightmare of directional fabric. I also thought this was the opportunity to teach how to machine applique. It can intimidate many but it is fast and adds so much to a quilt. The pattern shows how to applique as well as offering tips and tricks.
For my applique, I chose this gorgeous Harry Potter newsprint I had been saving for years. The color scheme for our home library was inspired by Gryffindor Common room and Harry Potter is indeed one of our favorite family series. This fabric was a fantastic match and had meaning.
I added borders to this quilt to really set it off and frame it. I also added borders to this quilt because I wanted some of our favorite titles quilted onto the borders. Once again, Lin rose to the occasion and sent me some font samples. We settled on this beautiful script and it lends a certain whimsy to the quilt. It also invites you to search and read those titles.
I even had enough of the Harry Potter fabric for the binding. It put a nice frame around the entire quilt and tied in perfectly with the applique. Once again-it is the quilted details that make this an heirloom quilt. Lin added this traditional emblem onto the corners and it just elevates the entire finished look.
Backing and a GIVEAWAY
I have used Cuddle fabrics by Shannon Fabrics more times than I can count and more often than a regular backing. (You can find a store here or an online retailer here )It adds a nice weight to the quilt and gives it an even cozier feel. I do use batting when I use the Cuddle fabric backings. It adds additional warmth (I live in the cold Mid-West with long winters) but it also adds a stability to the quilt. I have had Cuddle fabric both long-arm quilted (by a few different long-armers) and quilted it myself on my domestic machine. It is incredibly easy to work with. Stay tuned for a blog post/YouTube tutorial on how I quilt Cuddle fabrics.
Shannon Fabrics is giving away 3 yards to TWO lucky people of Cuddle in the same color Pewter that I used here!!! All you have to do is head to my instagram (@homewithandreasims) and be sure to follow me and tag a friend! One tag is one entry. Open to US residents only. The giveaway closes on April 30th.
When using Cuddle all the quilting details shine! It creates this texture that is luxurious and really allows your quilting to shine.
Doesnt this backing just make you want to touch it? My kids have been known to see a Cuddle backed quilt and immediately shove their faces into it. It really is the best compliment a quilter can receive!