I take my sketchbook with me almost everywhere.
It comes in very handy when I get stuck waiting somewhere.
Somewhere like a hospital waiting room, for example.
It was on one such occasion that I ended up staring at the carpeting in said waiting room until the weave pattern became so apparent that I sketched it out in my book.
There it remained for awhile, until my local guild asked me if I would design a quilt for them and present it as a mystery project at our annual fall retreat. Of course I would!
I flipped through my sketchbook looking for ideas, and came across the carpet-weave sketch. I excerpted a section of it, enlarged it a bit, colored it in, and came up with my newest quilt pattern design, Charleston Pavement:
My subjects at the Mystery Retreat did all their cutting ahead of time, and I then presented the quilt to them in 4 separate steps on the day of our retreat. There were 23 participants, and they had no idea what the finished quilt would look like when they started, yet they were the most wonderful group of pattern testers!
Here are some pictures of the work they did that day. This gives you a chance to see the quilt done up in some different colorways.
Here’s Andrea with her purple and white version:
Di with a blue and white version:
Diane, using some Kansas Troubles fabrics:
Gyla, who used a black background with her brights:
This one is Kathy’s:
Kay’s — batiks?!?! Kay never uses batiks! But she did this time, and it’s lovely!
Linda’s, with an orange background — what a great and different idea!
Liz. I spy Tula Pink!
This one is Marilyn’s:
Marsha’s, in nice soft, fall-like colors:
Peggy’s, very striking in black and white:
And Rose Marie’s — more fall colors but with a darker background:
And, pictures from our guild meeting following the retreat, when some of them had gotten even more work done on their tops. Scarlett made hers out of red and blue bandana prints for a cowboy version — you know I love that one! And Meredith, who escaped all pictures somehow, made hers in hot pink and lime green — LOVE!
Please make note of Bonnie’s red and white version, because I’m kind of in love with that one:Aren’t they all wonderful? Thank you so much, ladies, for participating, and being such awesome pattern testers!
The pattern comes with complete step-by-step instructions with lots of illustrations, and even includes a sheet of labels for you to use, as you sew, to keep everything organized. It’s available in both printed and PDF versions in my Etsy shop.
And just for some laughs, I’ll leave you with a few choice quotes that came from our retreat that day:
“Shelly, I hope you have nerves of steel.”
“Everything I do is a mystery, but not like this one!”
“It’s too early for you to be a comedian.”
“How am I missing a piece?”
“This is Quilt in a Week, not Quilt in a Day.”
“I thought I was bein’ careful, but . . . ”
“Well, that’s how lotsa babies have gotten born. Folks thought they were bein’ careful, but . . .”