Quick Quilt Tops: Help us pick a quilting design

September 7, 2021

This is the second installment of our fall Quick Quilt Tops series. You can find the first installment here.

The wonderful thing about quilting is that even quilts using the exact same pattern can look drastically different by changing just one fabric. For our Quick Quilt Series, instead of changing fabric, we made quilt layouts that look completely different simply by changing a block’s orientation or position.

What’s really cool is that it’s the same four-patch block throughout the entire quilt that works the magic. It’s proof that you don’t have to be a professional designer or expert quilter to create an array of stunning quilts!

We asked you to choose your favorite layout from ten possibilities. The top vote-getter won by a huge margin, getting almost twice as many votes as the second-place design. Design 5 was the winner!

If you’re wondering how your favorite did in the voting, here are all the designs and their respective place finishes:

I think voters were drawn to the dramatic diagonal “arrows” that highlight the star in the center of the Design 5 layout, which is especially prominent when fabric colors and prints aren’t there as a distraction. Though the quilt could be quite dramatic as a two-color quilt, I’d have no reason to go shopping for fabric if we did that! So, I headed to the quilt shop and picked up several yards from the Moda “Boudoir” line to use for the quilt. The final quilt will be a surprise, but here’s a peek at the fabrics:

Now you must help select a quilting design to complement the layout design winner! Yes, a pantograph would work well, but this series is supposed to stretch our creative muscles, so we’re going to work it, baby!

Design 1 is simple but really focuses on the diagonal lines that pop out in the quilt layout. Design 2 has a modern feel. It would look awesome with some background quilting that would make the circles and squares pop! In Design 3, curves and straight lines combine to highlight the diagonal movement while also softening the sharp angles. In the last design, I decided to let the quilting design become an “overlay” without regard to the piecing seams. The half-square triangle seams create a lone star shape if you look carefully. With this design, double batting and thread choice will be important to help the quilting overlay work without overpowering the piecing.

Irish novelist Margaret Wolfe Hungerford is widely credited with coining the phrase “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder” in one of her 19th century novels. If she knew any quilters in her day, they may have inspired her with all the variations in fabric, color, and pattern! Choose the quilting design that is most beautiful to you below. We’ll tally the results, I’ll sew up the quilt and quilt it with the winning design, then we’ll give it away to one lucky winner, along with some great APQS goodies!

Vote for your favorite design at the bottom of this article by September 10 at 4 p.m. CST!

Design 1

Design 2

Design 3

Design 4

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