Welcome guest blogger, quilt designer, and longarm quilter, Patricia Bochey. Pat’s new quilt pattern, Hot Toddy, uses small, easy-to-piece quilt blocks that come together to create a vibrant, welcoming table decoration for your holiday entertaining. It’s a stunning design! You’ll find this quilt in the McCall’s Quilting November/December 2016 issue. We’re happy to have Pat here to talk about her journey from scraps to table runner quilt pattern!
Hello! My name is Pat Bochey, I am a quiltmaker, longarm quilter, and author of Lemon Tree Snippets (my blog). I am also an Island Batik Ambassador and love working with their bright batik fabrics. I’m very excited to be a guest blogger for McCall’s Quilting today! I’m going to share a little bit about my design process, the tools I use, and how I created the Hot Toddy quilt pattern that is featured in the McCall’s Quilting November/December 2016 issue.
How many of you have made quilts and found that you have units left over? I’m sure that all of us have these stashed away “to do something with later,” right? That’s good, because that is how Hot Toddy was designed. I had just finished another quilt, and was cleaning up, when I realized I had a few leftover segments.
The quilt blocks I was making were stars called Card Basket stars, and I had made a few too many center units. These leftover sections were lined up side-by-side on my pressing table, and I liked them that way!
I use Adobe design software for work and for play, so I opened up Adobe Illustrator and created a sketch to match the leftover segments. I drew each of the smaller units to a 4″ scale and filled them in with color. Soon, I had sketched what I needed to work with.
From here, I began to position them in different arrangements, until I found one that was just right. Sometimes, when designing a pattern, it takes several tries until you find you like what you see. In this case, my first draft was a little too complicated. I wanted to simplify the design, so I kept going.
After I found the right configuration, I found some holiday fabrics in my stash to work with. I created swatch files in Illustrator and recolored the draft so that I could get a better idea of how the design would look in different colors. For this first table topper, I used Ho! Ho! Ho! by Moda.
I created several different versions and the design was starting to come together in various sizes:
The last step in creating a pattern is to make it! I enjoy the cutting and sewing as much as I enjoy using the Adobe Illustrator program. I gathered my supplies and got to work at the machine. And in just a few hours, I had finished my first Hot Toddy.
Thank you, Pat!
If you’d like to make a Hot Toddy table topper quilt and don’t already have a copy of the McCall’s Quilting November/December 2016 issue, you can order print and digital magazines in our online shop. The Hot Toddy quilt pattern is also available separately as an instant digital download.