Behind the Curtain · PatternLite · Patterns by Elizabeth of OPQuilt

The Flowering Snowball Block Grows Up

Now where were we?

I think we left the Flowering Snowball block here:

Don’t get me wrong…that was a good place to leave it, and I still might try to make this version of it, but the idea that I should do one in Anna Maria Horner fabrics just wouldn’t leave me alone. Thanks to Patti, I just had to give it a go.

First draft, using 12″ blocks from the PatternLite Flowering Snowball pattern:

The finished quilt center:

For some time I was stumped on what to do for a border. I try to subscribe to the Ruth McDowell school of sneaking in a border if you can, that is, having it be integral to your quilt, but not the same as the quilt.

I tried to do that with Summer Snowcone.

As well as a version of it with Sawtoothmania.

I looked at the center section for a long time, and was bothered that the tips of the petals were cut off. So I had the idea to extend the petals, re-draw a new border piece and see where that took me.

First draft of border, using the petals I’d originally cut for the center (but in the end, chose the warm yellow-green instead):

This is still an AMH fabric, called One Mile Radiant, a lovely design with Queen Anne’s lace all over it. I’d show you what it looks like, but I cut it all up.

(Aren’t we supposed to do that with fabric?)

The white was ho-hum, just didn’t sing it for me. So I auditioned different colors of solids: medium purple, light periwinkle and deep pink.
But as I said to Carol, “That dark pink on the left just looks like freshly manicured fingernails to me.”
And then she said, “Once you see that, you just can’t un-see it.”


The smart and handsome youngest son and his brilliant and lovely girlfriend came yesterday for an early Father’s Day lunch (which is why this post is late but that’s a good reason), and they graciously posed in front of Sunny Flowers just before Dave (DH) suggested they go up to the sewing room to help me with my conundrum of freshly painted fingernails. They were like, what?

But then I showed them the stack of AMH and started flipping through the bits, and one of these two said, What about that one? pointing to what is now front and center.
I think that might work, I said.
We all agreed (by now Dave had joined us) that the tips of those leaves were like an extension of the yellow-green and that the pink bits echoed the center of the larger flowers in the quilt.

So, after church today, we went out back to the pavilion and park and took a few pictures, before heading home to celebrate Father’s Day. As usual, Dave was my Quilt Holder Supreme. My newest pattern, Blossom, contains all the parts for this quilt, as well as three other sizes, including that original border block.

Happy Father’s Day to the man who married me and four children, all at once, and raised us all.

The day my husband became a father to four children. He’s a keeper.

I was also fortunate enough to have a magnificent father, who raised me, as well as being surrounded by many fine fathers: brothers, brothers-in-law, our sons, friends we know — all men who are doing their best to influence their families for good.

Happy Father’s Day, everyone!

Our grandchildren: a long time ago in a galaxy far far away.

22 thoughts on “The Flowering Snowball Block Grows Up

  1. What a perfect solution to the border conundrum! No lingering fingernail thoughts after seeing that pretty print. 🙂

  2. I had a good laugh about the fingernails! The solution for integrating the petals and center pieces with the border fabric is great. The snowball pattern is such a fun optical illusion. One of these days I’ll attempt curves again.
    I know you’ve posted it before but I never tire of the wedding photo. It is the sweetest love story that is such a lift to the spirit. You indeed got a keeper!

  3. Look at those sweet grands!!

    The border ended up with that sort of transparent look I love and I think is so hard to achieve!!!

    Happy Father’s Day to the quilt holder extraordinaire!

  4. Oh my gosh . . . I love this so so much Elizabeth! Why do you keep tempting me with things? Even though I bought the block pattern I really had no plans to do anything soon but . . . well maybe now I’ll have to move it up on the list. And then there’s all those cute grands. It’s a wonderful photo of them with you and Dave. Come early Sept we’ll have our first. A boy!

  5. What a triumphant family solution to the painted fingernail dilemma! It says a great deal about you family and your sewing! I always enjoy seeing your happy wedding photo! All those gorgeous grandchildren- how precious! And Elizabeth- you are the queen of borders! I love this Flowering Snowball quilt. I want to make one exactly the same, but won’t.

  6. I just love the quilt with AMH fabric. It could not be more perfect….Now about the 8 children I see posing….hm….You married your man with 4 and then had 4 more…?? WOW

  7. The plethora of round cheeks and dark eyes in that last photo is almost too much to bear. What a beautiful group of kids. Tell Dave Happy Fathers Day from me. The step-parent version of the holiday is NO JOKE. They should make medals for it.

  8. This is just since a wonderfully fabulous quilt! What fun to have family help with the border decision, that just adds a special memory to this beautiful quilt.
    I always love seeing your family pictures.

  9. The absolute perfect solution and it’s one of my favorite AMH fabrics!! Sometimes it takes a number of perspectives to help us see and thankfully, these days, offering an opinion on quilts is not too risky, right?!?!

  10. Hi, I don’t know if you remember but I asked if I could use Dave’s photo as a colour prompt for my latest quilt. Well I have completed one set of blocks and thought I would show you the progress so far. I will keep you posted but this is slow going( my first hand pieced quilt and a BOM for the year) so it will take a while. Really enjoying it though. Thanks again , love Angiexx

    Sent from my iPad


  11. Great blog about your flowering snowball. The border is absolutely
    brilliant!!! (I’m tempted to copy, but I think you really inspired me to play with it.) You have a very nice family too. Cute Grandkids!!!

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