Friday, January 15, 2016

Diamonds - Girl's Best Friends

Meet my first finish of 2016 - Diamonds in the Rough!!!

Diamonds in the Rough

Diamonds take a time to make.  This quilt is no exception.

I started this quilt in 2014.
One day, while shopping online for a sweater, I noticed the argyle pattern.
Immediately I thought - how would that look in a quilt?

I had never before made a quilt with diamond shapes.  So, this was going to be a new experiment :-)

What is the worst that can happen?
I'll ruin some fabric.  I have plenty of fabric to ruin.

Sew and Cut

So, I started with a few 2.5" wide strips of fabric and started playing.
First, I stitched two strips together and cut them into diamonds.  If two is good, won't four be better?
Only one way to find out.

Of course, I cut one strip set this way and one strip set the other.

Design wall 

And then I started playing with them on my design wall.

I played and played. I could align them vertically or at an angle.
Like these peaks and valleys.

What does that remind you of?
Rise and fall of the waves? Or does it look like the rise and fall of the ECG line on the heart monitor?
Obviously, I had forgotten all about the Argyle by now.

Seams to Match

Before I proceed further, I decided to stitch a few of those diamond strips together. 
Oh boy, that was fun.  I quickly realized that I need to pin 1/4" from the edge of the fabric, on the stitch line of both pieces if I wanted the points to match.

Pinned Properly

I hope these pictures convey what my words fail to do.

Matched Points!!!

In the end, I decided on this layout. Eight simple (may be) diamonds, arranged in a staggered layout.

Final Layout

All I needed to do now, was to fill in with a background.

That was more challenging than I thought. Oh well.

Adding the Background

I proceeded in angles. Not the best way.

Next time, I will take each diamond and place four triangles in background fabric around it - something like an economy block.  That way I will end up with a rectangular shape. Much easy to piece.

Nevertheless, I managed to finish the top!!!  Sorry, I forgot to take pictures at that time.
I took the left over diamond blocks to make a pieced back and I am very happy with that.  I am kicking myself now for not taking more pictures along the way. Grrrrr.....

Let's try something new in quilting. Shall we?
How about using a charcoal thread, instead of a beige/cream one.

Hate the charcoal thread

Quilted a few lines and hated it.

Rip it out

Proceeded to rip them out.  See, I told you it takes a long time (many ups and downs) to create a diamond.

Tweezers to the Rescue

Seam ripper and a pair of tweezers, followed by a lint roller.

Finally, a Lint Roller...
Finally, it is all gone.

Can you believe this? I have pictures of the disasters, not the accomplishments.
Guess you just learned what not to do.

So, now the good news.  I have plenty of pictures of the finished quilt and the back too.


Since Paul was not around to hold the quilt, I placed it on my design wall, secured with a few pins and took it out for a better daylight picture.  The finished quilt measures about 40" by 57".

I love love love this grey background fabric. But I cannot find it anywhere. It is grey hatch by ModKid. Have you seen it anywhere?

Hello Beautiful

The quilting is wavy lines using just my walking foot.

Love the Blue-Greens on the Grey Background

Yes, I know the diamonds are not uniform. Hence the name - Diamonds in the rough!!!
It does not have to be perfect to be pretty.
Besides, this one quilt taught me several lessons in piecing!!!

Speaking of piecing, are you ready to see the back?

Pieced Backing

I like it  a lot.  And here are a few more pictures.

Wavy Lines Quilting
 I used the same grey for the binding, hoping to create an artsy look to the quilt.
At one point, I considered naming it Desdemona's Jewels!!!

Imagine large shimmering earrings dangling from the princess's milky white earlobes.
What? I have a fertile imagination.

Walking Foot Quilting


Girl's Best Friend!!!
I am so proud of this one.  I tried something new. I learned a few things. It is my original pattern.
It is not perfect but I love it.

On Tuesday, I took it to Show & Tell at my Guild Meeting. And, Jennifer asked me to submit it for the Quilt Show.  I was speechless.  But, I want to hear from you.  Your comments make me smile :-)

I will be linking up with favorite linky parties.


  1. Oh i love the back of the quilt! I think using e strips is the way to go...nt triangles. Ive done it both ways and the strips, like you did it, is easier, at least for me. Pins, schmins....glue that seam girl! Keep your eyes open....package on the way!

  2. I can only imagine the work you put into it! Great job! Your backing is fabulous also!

  3. Another winner!!! Almost all of my quilts are made like this. I find it so much more interesting and fun. I think i have found a "soul mate" in the quilt world:)) I may just give this a try and hope the bias doesn't get too bad..Keep up the good work.. GB

  4. It may have been a long time in the making with some bumps along the way but it has turned out beautifully, well done you!

  5. By all means put it in the quilt show. It is amazing!!! You did a wonderful job.

  6. Really nice, in spite of all the problems it gave you. I think this would be a great quilt for a child. The bright colors are perfect. And, yes, put it in the show!

  7. Great quilt! I love the quilting pattern you chose.

  8. Just Looooove it! "Preeti in the Sky with Diamonds".:) Love the grey, and the colours in the diamonds. Understated elegance! Very classy! I really like the "simplicity" of your design. It showcases your skill. The balance/ratio of diamonds to background is great! If it was mine it would be a "keeper"! Well done! As I said I really loooooove it! Cheers Aussiejan

  9. My favourite colour combo! Yes for the quilt show! Yes to writing up a pattern! You are so smart to figure these out with strip sets, and then figure out an easier way (half rectangle triangles for the economy block idea). So smart. Sew smart. ;-) I love how this started with an Argyle sweater. I think the binding choice was perfect: it makes the diamonds look like they are floating. And the back--! Love.

  10. LOVE it-front and back. To think the journey all started with an argyle sweater and you have such a gorgeous quilt at the end. Loved reading your account of the journey and how you worked it all out. Definitely put it in the quilt show.

  11. Lovely quilt. Nice design and colors too.

  12. Don't you just hate taking out stitching? I'd never thought of using a lint roller to speed the process along. That hard work was worth it though, because the finished quilting is fab! Great finish!

  13. As always, I love the story behind this quilt. It looks like you are ready to make a GRAVITY quilt, Preeti!

  14. I loved reading your journey with diamonds. You did an amazing job and of course it belongs in a show. That back is awesome, very modern. In case you ever want more information about diamonds, Craftsy has a couple great classes. Cannot think of their names right now. Check it out if you get a chance. But I have a feeling you have gained great experience from learning by doing. Sometimes that is the better way to go. Beautiful.

  15. Wow Preeti: This is so beautiful and you designed it and figured it out yourself. What a brave woman you are. I love the quilting and I love that you shared what you learned along the way.

  16. I love your quilt. I love the colours, the background and I love that you shared your process.

  17. Lovely quilt that's even lovelier for the lessons it taught you. And that gray! Perfection.

  18. Well, Preeti, this one is beautiful! You really should enter it in the show. Winning a ribbon is not the purpose, although it can be an added bonus, it's the experience of enjoying another aspect of quilting. This quilt is certainly show worthy and it being your own design makes it extra special. BTW, I love the back, too!

  19. I sure do like how you think! You're curious, adventurous, and make beautiful things. It's lovely, and your color choices are great. Do you have someone in mind to give it to?

  20. I am in love with your quilt!! Awesome!!! Great fabric and quilt choices.

  21. The back is my favorite. The diamonds really "pop" in that setting!

  22. Congrats on finishing this older quilt. It looks great! Your piecing is impressive.

  23. Love your choice of color and beautiful arrangement. Great work!

  24. Great design! Love the blue/greens with the grey and your quilting came out really nice!

  25. Beautiful work, You are a brave one...all those seams would make me crazy!

  26. Very stunning. Reminds me of argyle socks (and that's a compliment - I love them)! I really like the one row on the back too!

  27. Beautifully done! Love the name too. Congrats on the finish.

  28. Well done! It is argyle all the way! I can't imagine doing this myself, but sure glad you shared all the details. The good and bad! You should be proud of this!

  29. Your diamond quilt is so pretty! Argyle has always reminded me of quilts I've just never taken the time to work it. Great job!

  30. Great finish -- love the backing!!

  31. I love this and your Kennedy Quilt so much. Every time you post finished quilt they are more and more impressive. I also like reading about someone who like me, experiments with the process and shapes. Happy Quilting!

  32. Great job! Sometimes our blocks need to marinate for a spell....and I like the way you set it with strips...thinking that turning them into rectangles, while easier to join, would alter that lovely setting.

  33. Congratulations what a great effort
    Thanks for doing all the hard work.
    Looks fabulous.
    Not sure if i am patient enough to try but I love it