Finally, a quilt for the cabin: Garden Party by Blackbird Designs

Columbia Ice Fields, Jasper National Park

I finished this quilt just in time to give it a good test drive during a short camping trip to Jasper National Park last

It’s so much fun having a quilt to photograph when you’re camping!

Columbia Ice Fields, Jasper National Park
Columbia Ice Fields, Jasper National Park

This particular project was a “Shop your Stash” challenge quilt hosted by the Good Time Quilters, one of the guilds I belong to.

Snaring River, Jasper National Park
Snaring River, Jasper National Park

We paid for the pattern, sight unseen last fall, then had the rest of the year to make something using the pattern as inspiration. The only caveat? You had to shop your stash. And did I ever!

sept-2016-017The pattern is Garden Party by Blackbird Designs. It’s a combination of piecing and applique, with little 3-D flower centers.

And, because I always try to learn something new with every project, I decided this quilt was a good opportunity to try out the quilt as you go method.  This allowed me to use up a whole lot of those small pieces of batting that are too big to throw away (because batting is so damned expensive!) but too small to back anything larger than a place mat. I’m not 100% sold on the method, but at least I’ve tried it. 🙂


The backing is made up of miscellaneous bits and pieces of green & brown fabrics. What I’d call my ugly fabrics.


Including this interesting piece:


Mr. C. actually likes the back better than the front.  I guess there’s no accounting for taste, lol.


It’s quilted free-motion style on my little Janome 2030 in what’s called the stipple pattern .

Folks, this was my very first attempt ever (ever!) doing free-motion quilting, and I’m pretty darned proud of myself. I didn’t quilt inside the flowers…as a result, they’ve puffed up a bit. I like the effect.


And you know what? It’s 100% made from my stash. I didn’t buy a single new thing to make this quilt. 🙂 This makes my thrifty heart do a happy dance!


It’s destiny is to live at our cabin at Fox Lake, in the Yukon, where I plan to spend chilly visits snuggled up in front of the fire for years to come. If you come visit, I’ll share a quilt corner with you.  But you might have to fight Mr. C. for it…

Mr. C. doing his sworn duty to uphold Nita's quilts
Mr. C. doing his sworn duty to uphold Nita’s quilts


  1. Stunning. No other word for it. Your quilting looks like it was done by a seasoned quilter. Photos are outstanding too. The Yukon is a beautiful place.

  2. Congrats on a finish for the cabin. A stash busting quilt IS the best feeling I have to agree!!!!I’m getting in the mood myself to shop my stash and do something creative. THANKS for the inspiration….as yous is fantastic…seriously…on both sides!

  3. What a great quilt, both sides! I guess Mr. C is a modern quilt lover. =) I’m s proud of your FMQ, too!

  4. Oh, how perfectly lovely, Nita! Those flowers are stunning, with such an amazing balance of muted colour and showiness. And I think the Dorothy side really is quite fun, too! I love that that large piece is offset. And I recognize some of those fabrics! So great. ❤️

  5. I love it! What a piece of art…. And what a setting! That blue, blue sky and the soaring mountains– an incomparable background!

  6. Nita Wow Wow Wow…I think I’ve said it all in the past..but your commitment to thrift and the outcomes are a word that I can’t even think of…then of course your photography is such a pleasure to the eye..don’t wear out those fingers!!!!! Beautiful work girl…

I'd love to hear your thoughts!