I've spent a lot of time the last month working on a special quilt for a friend and her husband. Patti commissioned me to make a quilt that she designed - we did quite a bit of back and forth to get all the details just right and ended up with a lovely quilt. I started out with a basic design in EQ7. After looking at it, Patti asked for no rings across the top and pillow shams.
We wanted the rings to be the height of the bed (24 inches) and 3 inches wide so I ended up using a tool I had to create my own pattern. In the process I discovered why I see so many wedding ring quilts that aren't actual circles, but more like rounded squares - it's just not physically possible to have squares at the intersections and keep your circles round.
I also had to draft the center hearts. That was quite a trick - what I ended up doing was joining a line of 3 1/2 inch squares, then started taking darts out of the seams to create the curve of the hearts. It took a bit of time and trial and error, but eventually came up with some nice looking hearts! I started out with just the burgundy and green, but Patti choose 6 prints to add, and they looked wonderful.
After piecing all the hearts and rings it was time to put it all together to make the top. I had purchased the cream fabric in a wide width so there would be no seams on the top and decided to applique the hearts on that, then applique the rings around the sided and bottom. I really wasn't sure how I was going to get everything to stay in place so I could stitch it with the machine, but ended up having a great idea at the last minute - fusible thread!
Placing the rings on the center panel was a little trickier. For that I ended up laying the center panel on my bed and pinning the rings in place around the two sides and bottom. I then used my table to get the rings straightened up, pressed them down and topstitched in place. After that, it was just baste the top, batting, and backing and getting the quilting finished. Oh yeah, and I had to make the pillow shams - because pillow shams are only 20 inches tall I had to re-design the rings to 18 inches, but that wasn't hard, since I had already figured out the details.
I quilted the hearts by outlining hearts with stippling to give a trapunto effect. They came out really well! The background was meandered - simple, but effective. I added a bit of stitch in the ditch to help define the rings on the edges. The edges were finished with bias binding around the curves. Patti was very happy with her quilt, and I was pleased as well with the results - that's me on the left presenting the quilt!