Quilter's World Updates

In the Quilting World Featured Quilt Product Let's Bind It!
In the Quilting World

Quilter's World Update

Flower Patch Runner
Learn to Quilt With Panels may be purchased at AnniesCraftStore.com.

Let me introduce myself: I'm Carolyn Vagts, editor of Quilter's World magazine and writer of this update. That's my day job, and at night, I'm an addicted quilter. I tend to eat, breathe and sometimes sleep with my quilting. I have a beautiful studio with my work space right in it. How convenient, since I work at and with quilting. As editor, I am very hands-on with every issue of the magazine. I'm also very hands-on with this update. I love to share my experiences with other quilters in hopes it will inspire them to explore the endless possibilities available to them.

My quest this year has been to feverously work on my scraps, but for this update I'm going to switch gears and play with the hottest panels in quilting right now. The Dream Big panels from Hoffman California-International Fabrics are designed by Jeanie Sumrall-Ajero. These floral panels now come in several sizes. They're the hottest thing on Pinterest and on many of the quilting forums and blogs. If you're a die-hard quilter like me or even a novice looking for a great project for practicing your free-motion quilting, this is probably the perfect project for you. Come along and play with me while I work on a panel or two.

With each update I select either a book or individual pattern to accompany it. It's usually something that I feel goes along with the content of my update. For this update my suggestion is the book, Learn to Quilt With Panels. This book is available at AnniesCraftStore.com. It's a good book for those wanting to learn how to finish a panel in a unique way but who are not really sure how to go about it. The book shows you how to design, how to graph your design and then how to proceed to cut it out and finish it. Working with panels can be very rewarding and creative.

One of the many things I love about panels is the ability to just get right to the quilting stage of the project if I need something quick and easy to work on. As busy as I am, sometimes it's nice to have a few things available to work on without the hours of planning and piecing. Sometimes I just feel like quilting. I have had several of the Dream Big panels in my studio for a while now, just waiting for me to find the time to play with them. Well, that time was this weekend. After seeing what so many other quilters were doing with them, I wanted to get started on my own. I had my own ideas on how to quilt them, and this was the weekend to try out my ideas.

After pressing a couple of the Dream Big panels, I layered them with batting and a backing, and then I was off to the sewing machine. As always, picking only one was an issue. I started with the blue and purple panel called "Aurora." Starting in the middle I outlined each of the petals.

Click here for larger image
Outlining each of the petals, starting in the middle of the panel and working my way out to the edges.

Once I had all the petals outlined with a free-motion stitch, I then started back in middle again. I went into each petal and quilted swirls to fill it. Since the center of this panel was an aqua color gradating to blue, my plan was to change thread colors as I proceeded out to the edges -- aqua, blue and then on to purple.

Click here for larger image
Quilting all the aqua petals first with swirls as fill.

Each petal is a different size and some have different shapes so each petal I quilted was unique. As I moved out from the center to start the blue pedals I changed my thread color to blue.

Click here for larger image
Changing my thread color to blue to continue with all the light blue petals.

Each petal was a bit different so it was important to stop and sort of plan my stitch path before starting each one. Some were only a partial petal and some were very large. By stopping at the bottom of each one and planning how to best fill it and where I needed to travel to the next one, I saved myself a lot of backtracking and double work.

Click here for larger image
I stopped at the center bottom of each petal to plan my stitch path and where to end to get to the next petal.

As a made my way out from the center of the panel I made my last thread change to purple and continued.

Click here for larger image
Quilting each petal one at a time, working my way to the outer edge of the panel.

As I approached the outer edge of the panel, filling the petals began to be a challenge. Making a partial petal look nice as it ran off the design and maintaining a flowing design all the way to the edge took a bit more thought and time. I found the best way to handle this situation was to stop and plan out each section.

Click here for larger image
Quilting my last round of petals on this panel.

By the time I had finished my first Dream Big panel I couldn't wait to start the next. This one was going to involve no thread-color changes. I did, however, re-layer it. I took it apart and added an extra layer of batting because I wanted the quilting to stand out more.

Click here for larger image
Quilting my second Dream Big panel with an extra layer of batting and using one thread color.

I continued on with second panel until it was completed. Then I trimmed both panels and added the binding. I love both of them, and now I can't wait to try the newest digital panel from Hoffman, The Big Kaboom. It's a 108 x 108-inch panel with the same type of flower as Dream Big. This one will require a bit more time than a weekend, but it will be well worth it. The Big Kaboom is scheduled to appear in shops in September, so keep a close eye out for it. It's a must-see and, probably, a must-do project. Well, at least for me!

Click here for larger image Click here for larger image
My finished panels in two different styles: Aurora (left) and Opal.

I love these panels! They finish up beautifully. Thank you Hoffman California-International Fabrics.

Back to top

Get Quilter's World magazine
and SAVE up to 29%!
Special Offer!
Quilter's World
America's premier quilting magazine!
Quilter's World serves up dozens and dozens of quilting projects in all shapes, sizes and skill levels. You'll experience a surge in creativity and stitching pleasure like never before! Go ahead. See for yourself what the fun is all about.
3-Year Cover price You Save Your Price
Per Year
Check one:
3 years (12 issues) only $19.99 per year ($59.97 total) BEST DEAL Save 29%
2 years (8 issues) $42.97
1 year (4 issues) $24.95
First Name:
Last Name:
Address 2:
ZIP Code:

Print subscriptions available only in the United States and Canada. Live outside the U.S. and Canada? Click here to subscribe to the digital version. Quilter's World is published 4 times per year at the cover price of $6.99 per issue. Canadian subscriptions will be charged an additional $9.98 per year plus GST/HST if needed.

[X] Close