The challenge presented to Island Batik Ambassadors this month was to use the AccuQuilt Tree of Life die to create a project that used the elements in a new and different way. Additionally, the goal was a quilt that does not immediately scream “Christmas.”
Words to Live By
I started with a plan for a medallion design that had words in the border. I chose the guiding principles that are celebrated each week of the Advent season – Peace, Hope, Joy and Love. Instead of the traditional red and green Christmas colors, I focused on the colors of Advent which are purple, pink, green and blue.
I thought about trying applique for the words, but I much prefer paper piecing. A quick search of Etsy led me to the Patch and Dot shop where I immediately began to drool over the Gothic script of the Black Letter alphabet.
I began piecing with various Island Batik fabrics that have been collected over the last couple years. I decided on Ivory as the background. Island Batik Foundations work with everything! Use the shop locator to find Island Batik in your local area.
Peicing the Tree of Life
Once the AccuQuilt Tree of Life die arrived, I began piecing all the half square triangles in a variety of colors. (You can see the unboxing of the die and all the fun goodies for 2022 challenges in this video.)
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Using the elements in a different way, I isolated the trunk of the tree to create the center of my quilt. Since the block is on point, I added corner triangles to rotate the design and have the arrows point to the words in the border.
While sewing the blocks, I kept the block diagram close at hand, trying to make sure all the pieces were positioned correctly. Even with this diligent effort, Jack (the seam ripper) showed up several times! Can you spot the mistake??
Once all the pieces were in the right place, it was time to prepare a backing. I had most of the Winter Wonders 10” square package to work with, so I made a patchwork square with Pinecone from Foundations as the border.
How do you feel about pieced backs? I love having “two-sided” quilts plus I have the satisfaction of using my stash.
I layered the top and backing with Hobbs Tuscany Collection batting. This is a cotton/wool blend that has wonderful stitch definition, yet won’t get too hot in the Arizona weather.
The third piece of the challenge was to gift the finished quilt to someone who needed a little joy. A friend of mine has been battling breast cancer and I hope this quilt lifts her spirits as she continues to fight the good fight.
More Tree of Life Quilts
Visit the other Island Batik Ambassadors to see what they created with the AccuQuilt Tree of Life die. There are some amazing, out-of-this-world designs!