Lizzy House Mini Swap

It might not come as a surprise to many of you, but I love Lizzy House fabrics. They’re quirky, fun, great colors, and just awesome. Though as I’m sitting here thinking about it, I haven’t used them very often. Maybe that’s because they’re such “me” fabrics, I don’t want to use them on anyone else. Anyway, I digress. Back in April, a good friend of mine, Jo from Riddle and Whimsy, asked if I’d help her moderate (and participate in!) a Lizzy House Mini Swap on Instagram. Of course I said yes!

Now for those unfamiliar with this sort of thing — everyone who signs up makes a mini quilt featuring Lizzy House fabrics, and then they receive one (if everything goes well…). We had over a hundred people sign up! Which made for a monumental task for Jo and me to keep track of everything, but that’s a post for another day. This one is about the mini I made.

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My partner loves blue, strong geometric design, but didn’t want anything too cutesy. Umm, okay. Lizzy House, but not cutesy… good thing I love challenges! After debating, both in my head and with husband and friends, I decided to go with blocks from the Tula Pink City Sampler book. The blocks provided a good opportunity for fussy cutting (a must with Lizzy House fabric), but if I used the same background on all the blocks, it could take it away from the Awwww side of things. Choosing the background was bit of a process too. I didn’t want to use white — far too easy to look too cutesy with white. Black seemed too harsh, so I dug through my piles of fabric until I hit on this teal. What’s that? It looks familiar? It should be. It’s the same color background I used for this mini earlier this year. This was the last of it though, so I’m going to need to find a new background for future mini quilts.

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Out of the 100 blocks in the book, I needed to choose 9. Nine blocks that went together, had the same core themes, provided good opportunity for fussy cutting, could utilize the cohesive background element, and weren’t too recognizable. The number of times I flipped through and through and through that book… well, let’s just say my book is nicely worn in now. For reference, the blocks I went with are: 12, 33, 34, 35, 60, 83, 96, 98, and 100.

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Layout was another puzzle. Trying to get a good balance of negative space, but without any of the prints touching (that weren’t already touching inside the blocks), and also not end up with all the yellow clumped in one corner, was actually fun. Though, I’m that weird kid who did 5,000 piece puzzles for fun. I spent a few days dithering on what to do for quilting. Finally, with the deadline approaching, I just went with pebbling. I knew it was going to take awhile (running out of thread at 10pm didn’t help either), but it was a good call. I love the effect pebbling gives a quilt, and an 18″ mini is a really good chance to use it.

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I actually hand stitched the binding on this one! Let’s all pause for the applause. I really dislike hand stitching, but to do my standard machine binding, I would have lost some of the balance and scale in the blocks. Artistic pride won over physical discomfort.

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For these finished pictures I followed Yvonne at Quilting Jet Girl’s tutorial. It worked really, really great, even on brick and stone. Even better, since I had the tape, I was able to secure all four corners and didn’t have to time pictures around the wind.

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The mini is now residing in its new home and was very happily received. It felt good to stretch creatively, kind of like when you get dressed up and wear heels to go to a party. I don’t want to wear heels everyday, and my jammies are far more comfy than party dresses, but it’s still good once in awhile.

12 thoughts on “Lizzy House Mini Swap

  1. It looks great, Sarah, and I’m glad my tutorial worked so well for you!! 🙂 That teal background works really well with all the fun prints, and congratulations for the hand binding. I always love to hear that swap minis are warmly received. Hooray!

  2. I think this is a beautifully successful mini! I really like the teal background and the seemingly randomness of the blocks. Just gorgeous! I’m going to have to check out the Lizzie House fabrics, I’ve never seen them (I think).

  3. Well done, my friend! I, too, like the process of arranging and rearranging blocks to get everything just right — I think it’s the best part of piecing a quilt top. Pebbling was definitely the way to go here, and it’s cool that you quilted the background only, keeping the LH designs in the foreground. Woo hoo for a successful swap!

  4. I love the pebbling!!! It certainly is a great quilting pattern to go with for minis 🙂 I’m also proud of you for hand stitching the binding–I gave you a standing ovation of applause, for the record 😉 Great finish!

  5. Oh it looks great! And you’ve definitely managed beautiful without being overly cutesy, that teal really sets off the prints doesn’t it!

  6. I have a cupboard of complicated jigsaw puzzles, but I confess I get them out less now that I spend so much time playing with fabric puzzles.
    I love the teal background (if you are onto a good thing, stick with it) and how this looks sort of random and improv even though you have used nine blocks and followed patterns.

  7. You did a wonderful job using the likes from your partner to create a beautiful mini quilt! You clearly put a lot of thought into each detail, and I bet she loves you for it!

  8. I am loving the way that mini looks photographed against the large brick wall! What a great juxtaposition! Your mini came great. I love the way you positioned the various LH fabrics to create visual interest, and the quilting adds a lot of depth. Really great job, I’m sure the recipient is thrilled!

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