Sunday, August 18, 2013

Indigo Stars Quilt

Indigo Satrs quilt 001

I have spent the heat of the summer, downstairs in the sewing room, where it is nice & cool.
We've had lots of rain here in Ohio...
wouldn't you know it,
 just because we DIDN'T put in a garden this year!
 ~insert rolled eyes~

So instead of being outside, watering & weeding, I've been SEWING!   
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This quilt , that I'm calling "Oh My Indigo Stars!", just recently came back from the long arm quilter at The Ewe Tree.

Didn't she do a fantastic job on it?
♥♥♥ all her delicate feathering in the light spaces of the stars & the borders.


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A peek at the back always shows off the quilting beautifully.
 I used a "cross" formation in piecing the backing fabrics...
something our church's "Prayer Quilt" ministry does regularly.
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It is always a struggle for me to find a spot where the lighting will show off the quilting to its best advantage. 
I think this corner, near the sunroom windows, does it the best.

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You can always see the quilting better on the back, without the distraction of the piecing.
Thank you, Janice, for doing such a wonderful job!
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 I first saw this quilt on the Fons & Porter television program last year. 
The pattern is called "Indigo Stars" by Karen Witt & uses F&P's "Tri-Recs" ruler
(stands for Triangles & Rectangles) 
for cutting the isosceles* triangles. 

 *That is a triangle with just 2 equal sides, in case, like me, you've forgotten all your high school geometry.

I'm a gadget junky!
(just bought the Hex N More ruler from Polka-Dot Pincushion Quilt Shop)

 Indigo Stars quilt 001

Let me tell you, organization was the key
to completing this puppy!
The quilt block is named
"Fifty-Four Forty or Fight"
and was a way for women to express & voice their
opinions regarding a political issue of their day,
since they didn't yet have the right to vote.
(Can you even imagine???
Go HERE to read more on that subject)
Info from says:

"The slogan refers to a dispute between the United States & Great Britain over Oregon Country, which an 1818 treaty allowed both nations to occupy. This was the territory that began at 42º north latitude (the southern boundary of present-day Oregon) & extended north to 54º 40 minutes north latitude (in present-day British Columbia). During the 1830s & early 1840s American expansionists insisted that U.S. rights to the Oregon Country extended north to latitude 54º 40 minutes, which was then the recognized southern boundary of Russian America (roughly present-day Alaska).
The 11th president of the United States, James K. Polk, used the slogan in his campaign.  Polk settled the dispute with Great Britain  & the boundary was set at 49º north, the northern boundary of what is today Washington State & the border between the United States & Canada. This agreement-reached without the fight threatened in the slogan-gave the United States the territory lying between 42º & 49º north latitude & Great Britain the territory between 49º & 54º 40 minutes north latitude as well as Vancouver Island. The United States' portion is present-day Washington, Oregon & Idaho as well as parts of Montana and Wyoming."
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 There are 3 different shades of cream in this quilt. 
 It is the exact same block repeated over & over, but done in different colorways. 
The blocks with the darker blue star points become visually predominant & the ones with the cream points fade into the background.

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I had little "stations" of each color combo set up beside my sewing machine, so as not to confuse them. 

The Tri-Recs ruler is engineered so that it has you cut off a little blunt tip, which aids in lining up the 2 side triangles perfectly every time. 

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See those little squared off corners, below?

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When you position the pieces, right sides together, if you make sure to have both fabrics line up on the top & side, as shown below, you are practically guaranteed that all your blocks will be the same size.

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These are all of the dark blue star blocks.
I made just as many of the same block, using the cream colors.
When you alternate them, the rows will then form this sort of Irish chain effect, as a secondary pattern.

Indigo Stars quilt 006

This was a challenging quilt to make...certainly the most intricate one I have done so far, but I enjoyed it immensely.

  It was like a giant puzzle & it went together beautifully.

I'm thinking about doing another one,
only in RED & TAN.
   I ♥ RED!

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I had the quilt draped over the stairway railing for a the patriotic holidays, but have since blocked it, so it would lay perfectly flat.
To do that, you need to:    

Spread a clean flat sheet out to prevent your quilt top from picking up dust or hair.             

Spread the quilt top on top of the sheet.             

Pull and tug at the edges of the quilt until it is as flat as you can make it.             

Dampen the quilt top thoroughly using a spray bottle filled with water.             

Measure the sides of the quilt. If the quilt is a square, the sides should be equal, and if the quilt is a rectangle, the sides parallel to each other should be equal. This helps you see where the quilt needs to be adjusted.             

Tug or push in the areas where the quilt top needs to be adjusted. The water helps the fabric hold its shape.             

Pin down the edges of the quilt using T-pins, working from side to side. For example, if you pin down one spot on the quilt, get up and go to the other side of the quilt to pin the spot across from it.             

Leave the pins in place and allow the quilt top to dry.

 It is on still on top of the sheet, on the floor of the sewing room, waiting entry into our local quilt show.  The grandkidlets are forbidden to go near it until after the show!  LOL


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I'm joining The Tablescaper for her Seasonal Sundays party as well as Susan's Metamorphosis Monday at Between Naps on the Porch & Yvonne's StoneGable for Tutorials, Tips & Tidbits on Thursday.  Won't you follow me over there to see what other bloggers have been making?  Lots of wonderful inspiration available for FREE!

Thanks for stopping by The Gazebo House today.  I love it when you visit me.



  1. B E A U T I F U L !!!

    I like the tip about angling the point.

  2. WOW! Art and Sand Sun is right. IT is beautiful!!!!! What a perfect way to use the soggy days of summer 2013. It has been so rainy and gloomy and you've sure made the most of the days.

    I love your new header too!

  3. What a beautiful quilt, the colors. Red and tan will be even more stunning.
    Have a great week...

  4. Oh, my, your quilt turned out so beautiful! I love the colors and I've never seen the cross on the back of a quilt before. That's so nice.
    be a sweetie,
    Shelia ;)

  5. Hi Rett:
    I love this quilt, but can imagine how stunning it would also be in red and tan. I can see all the love and care you put into it. I learned something new, too. I'm not familiar with having to block a quilt, so your description "How To" was interesting to me. I loved seeing all the details and especially liked the "cross on the back". Thanks so much for sharing the photographs.
    Have a great Sunday, friend.

  6. This is just amazing Rett! It's beautiful and I can't even imagine the amount of work that went into it! A true family heirloom:@)

  7. Rett, your quilt is gorgeous! You should be proud that you have this amazing quilt to show for a summer's project. Your organization is impressive, and I learned something new. I've always had to block my needlepoint, but didn't know one needed to block a quilt. It makes sense! Excited for you that this will be entered into the quilt show. Your star points look perfect!
    Enjoy your Sunday. Thanks for sharing this beauty.........Sarah

  8. Oh my word, it is fantastic! You should win!!

  9. Oh my, you are so talented! I love your quilt, is gorgeous, so GOOD LUCK!!!
    Have a lovely week.

  10. Wow, what a stunning quilt! The work on that is unbelievable - you did such a fantastic job on it. You deserve a blue ribbon. The pictures are wonderful. Thanks so much for sharing.

  11. It's gorgeous as always! Great colors, and the quilting is beautiful!

  12. Rett, you've created a stunning quilt. I love the colors and all the detailed piecing. Well done! Loved the history you included. I'm on Vancouver Island and just think, if the negotiations had gone the other way, I'd be living in the USA. (Which wouldn't be bad, but I'm happy to be a Canadian)

  13. Hi there! Thank you for your very kind comment on my blog - I'm always happy to meet another Ohio gal!!! *waves* :) This quilt is just lovely - I have seen Janice's work on quilts at the quilt show before - she is a very talented quilter! :) Beautiful!

  14. Love, love, love your quilt!!! This is just so beautiful! I really like your fabric combination, the pattern . . . everything!

  15. Stunning!Loving your blog! New follower here, hoping you'll stop by my blog and say hello and follow back :)

  16. I know you put your heart and soul into this, Rett, and it shows. Beautiful quilt!

  17. Wow, great job, my friend! Love your long arm lady too! She surely does do beautiful work!

  18. HI RETT!!!!
    MY dear sweet friend RETT!!!
    Oh How I have missed you....although not an easy task to find my blogger friends...I think I have figured the only route difficult to explain....I am going to take this lap top to a professional and get some geek squad advice as to WHY this path to commenting and finding your and all blogs are so difficult. ANY ways.,..I am here and I LOVE that QUILT!!!THAT Is so amazing!!!You are so talented and everything you do is perfect. I bet that took you most of the summer to make!!!!
    How is your summer going???I know I try to keep up with you via e-mail.....and I do still have your phone number...I need to call you soon and hear your sweet voice!!!
    love ya,

  19. QUILT LOVE!...and what a labor of love Rett! All those little pieces and precision details make me dizzy but what a beautiful end result! The back side of your quilt is a thing of beauty with the stitching! Glad you are sewing and and you didn't plant your garden this year. The farmers at the farmers market this weekend were all crying over their drowned plants and burst tomatoes this year.

  20. I came over from BNOTP. I am a foodie, but just wanted to say kudos for all the great work you have put into this quilt. I hope you win at the quilt show. Also, thank you for telling me how to "block" at quilt. I did not know this although I have been around a lot of quilters. Oh, and your long-arm quilter did an excellent job.

  21. Rett, I can't even IMAGINE trying to do this!! It is gorgeous!! The colors remind me of the beach with the blues of the sky and ocean and the sandy colors too. I have been listening to some quilting club novels on audio books and I am intrigued by all the meanings of the different patterns. I just love the way your pattern appears to be moving. The stitching is also incredible. I hope you win! Linda

  22. Oh my gosh, what a lovely quilt, Rett! I don't think I'd ever have the patience for it but I think we all find what we're good at and you are SO good at this! Your sewing station is wonderful!

  23. This is just stunning, are so talented and so is the quilter.
    Very beautiful.

  24. What wonderful work. I have never made a quilt, and I dew just a bit. Your work is beautiful. Thanks for the inspiration!

  25. Oh Rett, it is GORGEOUS!! You are so very talented, your work is beautiful and I love the color combinations. *sigh* xoxo


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