Magnolia Trees–Quilt

I made this quilt a couple of years ago, and I still am pretty proud of it. The design, though, is not exactly original. I had seen a quilt that I really liked at the Houston Quilt Festival (Link here) in an exhibit area in which photos aren’t allowed, so I made a quick sketch on a piece of paper. Later, I made a drawing for my own quilt from the sketch. To me, the flowers represent magnolia blossoms, and, hence, the quilt is magnolia trees. The end result is quite a bit different than the one I saw, especially, in terms of the colors.

I hand-dyed all the cotton fabric myself, using big, Jack-in-the-Box plastic cups, and small pieces of fabric, a cup or two at a time. Then I reverse-appliqued (by hand) the flowers for the top section. After I had made all of the flower pieces. I started machine-piecing the trunk panels, but I was also still dyeing some of the fabric at the same time. I sewed all of the flower panels together to determine the exact width of the quilt, then I made root blocks to go with trunk panel. I adjusted the width of each of the longer panels, sewed all of those together, and finally sewed that large piece to the top flower strip. I also hand-dyed the backing piece and the binding.

I hand-quilted it using outline stitching in a variety of variegated threads.

Here you can see echo-effect outline quilting around the appliqued flowers.

What I really like about this quilt is the abstract nature of it all, and the strong colors, which, I think show the strength of the trees themselves. I also really liked doing the whole process of this piece from beginning to end, and doing the hand-dying of the fabric as I went along. It’s definitely one of the quilts that I have done that a lot of my own self went into.

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Here are a couple more of my quilts if you’re interested.

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