Saturday, March 4, 2023

Leafy Pathways new pattern reveal

I'm in New Brunswick this week, due to an unexpected family emergency (all is turning out well, no worries!).  About 10" of light fluffy snow fell on Thursday.  Yesterday, with the sun shining in a blue, blue sky, I thought it was absolutely lovely.  Today the sky is gray and blah and there are brown puddles on the streets and sidewalks.  Guess who is looking forward to spring again?

Leafy Pathways makes me think of spring, which is just what this blah late winter day needs, so it's a perfect day to share this finish and  new pattern.

Leafy Pathways by Canuck Quilter Designs
Fabric:  Fruit and Veggies from Island Batik

From the photo, you may have guessed that I did not finish this quilt recently.  Green grass and leaves are not a feature of Iowa in winter!  I've kept this quilt under wraps since last summer, and I'm so happy to be allowed to share at last now that the fabric is arriving in stores.

I started with a tidy stack of fabrics from the Fruit and Veggies collections sent to me by Island Batik, which I promptly cut up into pieces.

Fruit and Veggies batiks from Island Batik

I made the leaf blocks first, then proceeded to lay out all my squares around those.  I've said it before.  "Random" color placement is hard.  Actually, my science minded husband is quick to point out that random is actually quite easy.  The pleasing distribution of prints and colours I aim for isn't actually random at all.  It's just a pleasing arrangement, or as pleasing as I could manage in the time I was willing to devote to it.  Trust me, more time would result in so many different distributions, and not necessarily any better ones!

I'm lucky that while Rosie, my trusty quilt dog, supervises carefully, she refrains from rearranging the pieces for me.  That said, after laying out this quilt, I made the effort to get my design wall put up.  It's much less taxing on my back to rearrange on the wall than on the floor.  Of course, if I'd been using the wall I might have done a few more iterations of the layout, so maybe the floor was for the best.

Center of Leafy Pathways by Canuck Quilter Designs

Here's the center.  I'll be honest, I rather like this without a colour border.  It seems lighter, airier.  I think making the outside sashing  wider and using a contrasting binding (maybe even a scrappy binding with all the colours from the squares) would have finished this quilt off beautifully and given it a modern vibe.

However, I had committed to the final design before Island Batik sent me the fabric, so I finished it with a colour border as I'd initially proposed.  I like how that turned out as well.  It's a more traditional look, and I like that too.

You might be looking at all that sashing and shuddering.  I get it.  Long sashing strips are one of my least favourite things to sew. However, there aren't as many as it seems at first glance. The blocks are actually the leaf surrounded by a ring of squares, so much of the sashing is in small lengths within the block.  There are only 5 horizontal sashing strips spanning the width of the quilt center.  The vertical sashing, even on the outside, is all made up of shorter strips.

This design would work really well with assorted red scraps for a Canadian patriotic quilt.  I'm putting that on my list of quilts to make just for me :).  Eventually.

It's also a perfect fall quilt in orange, gold, rust and/or fall prints.  You could even use different prints for each leaf as my pattern testers did.  Thank you to Dana and Sandie @crazy'boutquilts for testing the pattern and sharing these pictures.

Dana's version of Leafy Pathways

Sandie's version of Leafy Pathways
Find Sandie on Instagram (@crazyboutquilts) or on her blog

That's all for now.  I hope all is well in your world.

Happy quilting,

The Leafy Pathways pattern is available as a PDF download in my Etsy shop, or ask your favourite quilt shop for a print version.  Shops, please visit my website for wholesale information or find the pattern at Checker, Brewer or EE Schenck.

Look for the Fruit and Veggies collection in stores now.