Saturday, March 26, 2011

Material Obsession 2

Very frustratingly we still don't have internet, and am not sure when it will be back on.... aagh! But I really wanted to share with you this fantastic book before the baby arrives (although I have a feeling she'll be late like my others!).

Material Obsession was the first ever quilting book I bought. I loved it! Its a beautiful book, great photography, fabulous designs, and wonderful hand quilting. I often (still) flick through it for inspriration, particularly on hand quilting. So when I was sent Material Obsession 2, by Kathy Doughty (of Material Obsession) and Sarah Fielke (of Sewn) I was delighted to find that this book is just as fantastic as the first -loads of quilting eye candy that brings traditional designs to life. It is a grown up version of their first book - in that I mean they have moved on from squares and rectangles to more sophisticated designs and that use a variety of techniques such as foundation piecing and hand piecing. I have much to learn when it comes to traditional designs and techniques, so its great to have a book on my shelf that steps me through it with plenty of diagrams and full sized templates (no enlarging on the photocopier!). The quilting basics section at the back of the book is excellent, and I particularly loved the section on working with colour. They have a great explanation for warm and cool colours - its warm if it reminds you of the sun (red, yellow, orange) and its a cool colour if it reminds you more of the sea (blue, green, purple) - easy! The 'basics' section also contains info on choosing fabrics, threads, using different rulers, fussy cutting, foundation piecing, various applique methods, step by step hand quilting (they taught me to hand quilt), and binding. They really know their stuff.

Here's some of my favourite quilts in the book:

The beauty below is Kathy's all time favourite quilt. I'm keen to try foundation piecing, and make a smaller version of this quilt.

And this amazing one is Sarah's favourite quilt ever. She used 350 different fabrics - stunning!

What a labour of love this one would be. Each star has 72 little kite shaped pieces sewn by hand together.

I wanted to try all of these quilts, but I decided that due to lack of time I would try my hand at hand piecing the star on this last quilt. I'm a little ashamed to admit that this is the first time I've tried hand piecing, or using a template for that matter!

I decided a cushion would be best for my first attempt.

I found it a little tedious cutting out all the fabric using a template, as many of them were fussy cut, but I was surprised that I loved the hand piecing part so much. It was very restful and so portable. The cushion came together much more quickly that I had anticipated.

I need more practice getting all the seams to match up nicely, but I enjoyed the process and I could see myself making a hand pieced quilt in the future.

Ofcourse I hand quilted this one. 

Its going to my sister, Erin, to go with her wedding quilt.

Thanks to everyone who has commented, emailed or bought my patterns. I really hope to get back to you soon :) Thank goodness for free WiFi at McDonalds!


  1. Thats a great idea - making a cushion! Can you believe I just got this book this week and I too am in love with it!!

  2. oooh the hand-piecing bug has bit, perhaps. i love how portable hand-piecing can be! meetings are never boring with a quilt block in your hands :-)

  3. Oooh, Kate, love that pillow!!! What a great way to use the design. Unfortunately, I don't have the time to make any of the quilts in this book, but I could manage a pillow! Great idea!

  4. Oh Kate!!! I love your pillow - it is fantastic!!! It is no secret I love the Material Obsession books. I have made several of their quilts and treasure them all. Best of luck with the baby!!!

  5. The design of the pillow is wonderful but the fabrics you chose are what make it so delightful. The 'border' gray and flowers are echo'd in the central fabrics so perfectly. There's just the right amount of change in scale. The fussy cutting is exactly the right touch. The matching of the stripes is perfect. Just Lovely!!

  6. I ordered the book last week, I also love the first one. For me as a beginner there are so many ideas and tips. Your cushion is lovely, very good idea. For the moment i prefer paper piecing, so mmuch accurate than machine sewing.

  7. This book is great isn't it? I am very slowly working on the seasons quilt to go with a program I run at work. And this list is as long asmy arm of others I want to try. So many little time!

    I love the cushion the fabric choices are wonderful!

    I hope you don't have too long to wait to meet your new family member!

  8. I have material obsession too, I borrowed the 2nd book from the library and it took me a few perusals to appreciate it, there are some really beautiful quilts in there and the more you look the more you find!
    I have finally finished my Charm Bracelets quilt! You can see a picture here -

  9. Hi Kate,
    Good wishes on the upcoming baby...hope you have setteled into your new home and nice to hear you have taken a bit of Material Obsession with you! Thanks for mentioning the book. Maybe a pillow from each quilt would be a good idea for the next 18 months! Kathy

  10. That star one that you did up in the pillow was my favorite design, too! You did such a great job...I could never do that, I don't have the patience! :-P Good luck on the little one! :-)

  11. It looks so great Katie! I will make one of their quilts one day. Can't wait to see you soon XO

  12. Lovely, lovely. And what a lucky sister!

  13. Your pillows are Beautiful!
    I have the same book on the shelf.
    Going back to it now for another look!


Thanks so much for leaving a comment! I try to respond but life sometimes gets in the way. If you have any questions please email me at kateeconklin(at)gmail(dot)com