Thursday, October 31, 2013

DIY Project: Star Wars Quilt

I made this awesome Star Wars Quilt for my husband, and I'm glad we live together, as it would be very hard for me to part with this one. I've been working on it for months! I really wanted it to be a surprise, so I could only take it out of hiding, and work on it, on the rare occasion when my husband was out of town without me. During his latest business trip this week, I finally had a chance to to finish it.

Star Wars quilt, via my Instagram

For this ultimate fanboy quilt, I wanted all Star Wars prints. I was really surprised how limited the options were, however.  While I didn't pick these colors, I just grabbed whatever was available, I'm quite happy with the black, white, & primary color scheme regardless. I wanted a simple, straight forward quilt top, to show off the rad Star Wars prints.  To break it up a little, I mixed in a few character squares that I pieced separately with a random white solid border. The only bummers were that I couldn't for the life of me find a single Leia print, or one with R2D2 in a coordinating style.

Star Wars quilt top.

Closer up, you can really see each of the bright prints.

I didn't think of it at the time, but now I wish I would have fussy cut the red Spy Glass print, 
to get all the different characters in there, but oh, well. 

For the backing, I used one of the prints I used in the quilt top, Spy Glass, but in white instead of red, and I really like how that came together. The contrast of all the color on the top, and the black and white on the back, turned out really nice.

King-size Star Wars quilt, backing 

I handmade the binding using a black and yellow Star Wars logo print, piecing it so the words would wrap continuously all around the quilt, and I really love how it came out, both on the front and the back.

The back view of the binding. Front side has the colors inverted. 

For the batting, I had initially planned to use my favorite low loft bamboo batting, that is very light, airy, and really easy to work with, but the resulting quilts are definitely on the thin side. After I made this quilt, using double bamboo batting, my husband mentioned how much he liked it, so I undid the partial quilting I had already completed, and re-sandwiched the blanket with double the batting.  Given the size of this quilt, in addition to the double batting, I was really pushing the limits of my little sewing machine. There were several points where I wasn't sure I could get the quilt through, and I'm ridiculously exhausted in my back and shoulders after wrangling this thing though my machine for the past 3 days.

Close up of the different quilting patterns. Here you can also see the alternate colors of the top-side binding. 

For the quilting, I started with a simple stitch in the ditch square pattern, and then went over it again, quilting each different print in the quilt top with a different quilting pattern. To make the character blocks really pop with all that color, I quilted the white borders with a very tight straight line quilting, leaving the actual character unquilted in the middle, and they came out very puffy. I've made quilts using this variable, block-by-block quilting pattern several times before, here and here, and each time my husband mentioned how he really liked the differences in textures this method creates throughout the quilt. I love it as well, but I use it sparingly, as it is EXTREMELY time consuming. This was definitely a project where the extra work was worth it, and I love, love, LOVE how it came out.

All in all, I'm quite happy with this quilt. I'm giving it to my husband when he comes home from his trip tonight, and I really hope he loves it!


Quilt top:
Star Wars Fabric, Starring
Star Wars Fabric, Shield Green
Star Wars Fabric, Planetary Green
Star Wars Fabric, Cameo (1 yard panel)
Star Wars Fabric, Planetary Blue
Star Wars Fabric, Shield Blue
Star Wars Fabric, Light Sabers Multi
Star Wars Fabric Shield Red
Star Wars Fabric, Spy Glass Red
white cotton solid

Star Wars Fabric, Spy Glass White

Star Wars Fabric, Words, Yellow