A woeful, sewful tale

I’ve been doing the Bonnie Hunter Grand Illusion mystery quilt. “What is that?” asks my non-quilty friend. Bonnie Hunter is a master quilter with many books etc under her … Er…seam ripper. Every year in December & January she hosts a mystery where a clue is posted each week. Each clue is a piece of the quilt that you make. Nothing is left to chance. She even gives you paint chip numbers so you can match your colours accurately. Bonnie Hunter is the absolute queen of scrappy.

I love scrappy. Love love love scrappy quilts. I also try to challenge myself with each new project. And, Bonnie’s quilts are challenging. So it seemed like a match made in heaven.

I made clue number one:

280 broken dish units. Two Hundred. and Eighty.

Loved ’em!
Then I made clue number two:

There are 100 (One Hundred) of these whatever-you-call-em units. 600 pieces/800 seams. Wozers! It took me, like, for-ever, but I did it! Now I am really pumped about the mystery quilt! It’s going to be fabulous! It’s going to be a big quilt, too…over 80″ square. I can’t wait! I love the scrappy turquoise and the scrappy pinks together. Love the pops of yellow and black.

But…I am waaaay behind. Clue number 5 was posted last week. I’m running out of time! I’ve got to get caught up! I get up this morning totally pumped to sew up clue number 3. Maybe even clue number 4 if I really fly at it and work hard.

I turn on my computer before I’ve even had my coffee.

Eee gads! Today the mystery quilt is revealed! Spoiler alert, spoiler alert! Argh, I looked! I couldn’t help myself.

I don’t like it. At all.

For the first time ever, I am looking at a Bonnie Hunter quilt that I don’t like. To me it looks like a hot scrappy mess. And it is the one I am making.

I don’t know what to do. Finish it anyway? Take the blocks I’ve already made (and that I like so far) and make something different?

Honestly, I think I’m going to go have a good bawl now.

(Please, Bonnie, don’t be reading this. I love you to pieces, I really do. But just not this particular quilt)




  1. I’m echoing the other comments. I wasn’t able to start the quilt in the first couple of weeks but I started to gather fabrics. And at week three I looked at what had been done so far and thought “I”m not sure if I like this quilt”. So I didn’t start it. And I am happy now that I didn’t. I am thinking that this quilt must look nicer in real life than it does in the photos…. I mean Bonnie does have good taste usually.

  2. This is why I don’t make mystery quilts. Made one once…never again. So sorry you went through all of that. Do you think you can set it differently? Rotate the blocks? I have no idea…I haven’t seen it.

  3. Nita, I don’t care for it either. Here’s my plan: I didn’t do it scrappy which might help but I still find the design too busy so I’m going to use regular sashing with the blue cornerstones and use the step three blocks as a border with a plain inner border and maybe not use the step four blocks at all.

  4. You are not alone in not liking it. I have been saving the links so that I could make it for another time and having seen the quilt today I am glad that I have not started anything. Perhaps you can add some more creams to tone it down and make a charity quilt with the leftovers because I have no doubt there will be leftovers. I feel your angst. I do love Bonnie’s work though and she has some great ideas. I hope you will solve your dilemma. Saying all that now may I wish you a Happy New Year.

I'd love to hear your thoughts!