Suzanne Campion, one of our most favourite of customers has made this Liberty Butterfly Notre-Dame Quilt using lots of the exclusive fabrics from my recent collection. It showcases the fabric in the collection so beautifully. I’ve got several projects to share with you over the next few weeks which is really exciting. Let’s sew our way through lockdown number 3!
I asked her about the make.
Firstly I love the name of your quilt – what inspired the name?
“I am naming all of my cathedral window patterns after cathedrals and choose Notre Dame to compliment the Parisian colour palette that you created within the Butterfly Garden Exclusive range.”
Why did you choose the combination of fabrics for this stunning quilt? “The butterfly in the Betsy print was the starting inspirational point for this design. The purple outline of the purple within the print was something I wanted to bring out on the frames of the cathedral window. So, I focussed on using the darker fabrics from the collection to frame the softer delicate colours of the other prints.”
When did you start making Cathedral Windows and can you give us a little information of the Cathedral Window design.
“I discovered the machine pieced technique watching a You Tube tutorial by Jenny Down of the Missouri Star Quilting Company. I tried the technique and became fascinated with the possibilities. In the traditional cathedral window technique you fold a large piece of fabric, usually white, and you can then add any fabric within the windows. I love this machine pieced method as the possibilities are greater. Basically, you work with four base squares and four folded squares to create a window block. Back in 2017, I made a quilt for Festival of Quilts entirely from using this technique and experimented with putting blocks within blocks. In this design, I have developed the technique further by combining rectangle and square blocks.”
Did you personally design this quilt and how long did it take? “Yes, I designed this quilt. I sketched out an idea for creating a butterfly and then I tend to get stuck in and start creating with fabric. The part that took the longest to get right was the antennae section of the butterfly, my unpicker tool played a big part in this part of the design process. I see this as a positive as when pattern writing, you learn from the things that don’t work and add helpful hints. The pattern will be available on my website www.suzannecampion.co.uk later in the spring as I am developing a larger version; the plan is to make it as a quilt for my eldest daughter when she leaves home to go to ballet school! The tone of pink in the Felicite Lilac is the perfect ballet satin pink.”
What do you love about Liberty fabrics? “I love the amazing detail and depth of colours within Liberty fabrics and the quality of their Tana Lawn is second to none. It’s just an absolute joy to handle and sew with.”
Which is your favourite fabric in this exclusive collection? “Choosing a favourite is always hard, like choosing a favourite child! I adore the butterfly addition in your Betsy print. It seems like it has always been there and we’ve only just spotted it! The colouring of the Strawberry Thief Blossom is stunning. I am very drawn to the colouring and pairing of the Felicite Teal and Mini Edenham Lilac together too.
Wow double piping – is that a tricky skill?
“I was inspired to add some piping by listening to you talking about the box of ribbons that inspired you when designing the collection. My design background involved designing trimmings and tassels so I am now starting to bring more embellishment into my work to create pieces which are the ‘jewellery’ of the home. The piping in some ways is easier on this quilt as you do not have to sew around corners. I use a zipper foot and move the machine needle position close to the cord on the left. It is definitely worth the extra time and effort to add this finishing touch. As Tana Lawn is so fine, I prefer to use a smoother braided piping cord within my piping to give a crisper finish.”
How long did it take you to make?
“It’s hard to specify the actual time as I was working on a lot of projects during lockdown last year and it depends if you count the trial blocks to create the design. I took my time deciding how to quilt it. I have used machine and hand quilting, I am really enjoying hand quilting at the moment, it is quicker than you think it will be.”
Thank you so much Suzanne for sharing this stunning quilt with me. I love seeing what people make using my exclusive fabrics and this is a true masterpiece of sewing and design. The matching cushion is going to be featured next week.