improv mini quilt: radiant gem

Ok, I just missed getting this into the Blogger’s Quilt Festival going on (bah!), but I’m so smitten that I couldn’t wait to share it… Say hello to Radiant Gem! (I’m also calling it my happy accident quilt). This is my first attempt at improv quilting, and I think I’m hooked!

radiant gem quilt front

Remember the quilt I made for the Radiant Orchid Quilt Challenge? Feels like so long ago that I finished it! Not only was I left with a comfy quilt that makes me happy every time I look at it, I was left with a sizable pile of pretty little scraps.

radiant gem quilt scraps

Those scraps sat for some time, staring at me… Then one day I finally said enough and decided to throw them out. But as I started sifting through all the beautiful orchid hues, I couldn’t bring myself to do it. So I sat down at my machine, and set the disorganized pile of scraps next to me. And I just started sewing. No plan. No vision for the end result. I just sewed… Pick up a piece. Sew. Add another. Just keep going. (With lots of ironing along the way, lots). At some point, I stopped, set the improv “what-the-heck-is-this-thing” on the floor and stepped back. I walked around it, and wouldn’t you know it, a little gem had begun to take shape!

radiant gem quilt detail

I added a few more pieces where they were needed to emphasize the gem, and then I just grabbed all of the scraps of the same color and started sewing until the size felt right. It looked a bit plain so I added a few additional colors to the corners. So glad I did, I really love this little detail.

radiant gem quilt corner

I also decided to give matchstick quilting a try for the first time. It’s tedious but I love it. And the variegated thread is just perfect for this.

radiant gem quilt detail

I used a solid color for the back to really show off the quilting. And of course I had to do scrappy binding. The finished size is about 27×23 inches. Not sure what to do with it yet. Maybe a wall hanging?

radiant gem quilt binding

So that’s it. That’s how this little Radiant Gem came to be. I wish I had taken pictures along the way but I really didn’t think it would turn into anything worth keeping. Live and learn, right? ;)

radiant gem quilt detail

Have a great weekend!


6 thoughts on “improv mini quilt: radiant gem

    • Thank you, Kelly! I’m not a member of MQG but I’ve been thinking of joining. And unfortunately, this quilt doesn’t meet the minimum size requirements. Maybe next year ;)

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