Pineapples and Crowns

Gazebo with two quilts

Pineapples and Crowns_front iphone

Pineapples and Crowns
Pieced, Appliquéd and Quilted
61″ square
No. 145 on my 200 Quilts List

Looking up into the cupola

Pineapples and Crowns_labelThe pineapple blocks were pieced by two different bees and I over six months: the Mid-Century Modern Bee and the Always Bee Learning Bee.

Pineapples and Crowns_lounging around

Pineapples and Crowns_back

Pineapples and Crowns_signature blocksI had forgotten to piece all the signature blocks into the backing from Mid-Century Modern Bee, so I just kind of swooped them onto the back.  While they may look a bit unusual, I figure the back of my quilt is like looking in my clothes closet–no one will see it but me–and this way I won’t lose these precious tiny blocks.  I wish I had a signature block from the other piecers of the blocks, but that bee didn’t do them, and that bee is now scattered.

Pineapples and Crowns_detail1The background is a series of petite prints on a white or creamy colored ground–no beiges or grays to muddy the clarity of the colors–and is a contrast to the solids of the pineapple steps and the crown petals.

Pineapples and Crowns_detail2I quilted this quilt over a week, using seven and a half bobbins, in a free-swirling pattern, outlining the leaves and stems in the border.  I got the idea for my border from the masters of borders, the Piece O’ Cake ladies, but varied it somewhat to fit what I needed.  I was interviewed for an article on quilting last week, and I noted that if we think we are making something original, we are slightly delusional.  Actually I wanted to say we are straight-up delusional, for everything comes from somewhere else, but I qualified it so quilters wouldn’t have their feelings hurt.  The idea, I think, is to make that snippet of influence new for you.

Mark Ronson, the well-known DJ-record producer, noted  in his TED talk  that we are all sampling from everyone else, sampling being his word for when recording artists slip in a line or two from someone else’s recorded song to bring a texture or a reference to the work that has gone before (cue at 6:15 for his discussion).  So you might say I sampled some early pioneer in the use of her pineapple block and the Piece O’Cake ladies for the border, and both of these were probably sampled from somewhere else, somewhere.  I feel richer for being a part of this quilting universe, with good ideas slipping in from places beyond.

Pineapples and Crowns_front

Yes, you did a notice another quilt in that first photo.  Stay tuned.

These photos were taken in our local university’s botanic garden, in the gazebo near the iris section, overlooking the creek gully.  It’s a very old gazebo and I fully expect that one day I’ll arrive with my quilts and it will be gone. Until then, it will be sampled into my photos, my coda on the making of a quilt.


Moroccan Quilt Tile

Moroccan Tile from JillinItaly

So it all started with this photo, from the Instagrammer JillinItaly, a small sweet shot of tiles on a Moroccan floor.  It actually started with my #the100daysof4square project (an offshoot of #the100DayProject) and since I have to come up with four squares of something every day for 100 days, this was what I chose.  Maybe it was the color, the interesting half-clamshell that formed a whole clamshell and an apple-core block, I don’t know.  It was just one of those serendipitous moments that made me want to struggle my way through learning how to draw it in EQ7 (I still depend on my trusty QuiltPro, but wanted to become fluent in two quilt languages).

Moroccan Tile Quilt

I’m also suffering badly from Spring Fever, even worse than my students (which now you know must be nearly a four-alarm alert of Teacher Fatique and Mindlessness), so much suffering that I let them out early today.  Again.  That’s two days in a row and the kid who went his freshman year at Cornell (but is now back here) looks at me as if something was whack-o, and the kids in the back row just grin from ear-to-ear, even though I had to tell one of them she was on track for a stupendous grade of D, if she didn’t get her Stuff Together and pull it up to a sunny C.  Are you surprised when I tell you that she was completely surprised?  Didn’t think so.

So I just had to do something different tonight rather than think about all of that, and here it is: a free pattern for a six-inch block of the above.  Moroccan Tile Block six-inch  Have fun.  I have not yet made it, but Leanne of SheCanQuilt has a wonderful tutorial, complete with video, on sewing curves, so I’d check over there if I were you.  That first picture from JillinItaly’s feed just lit up my wee IG universe (click on the icon on the right to see more), so maybe it’s not the only the fabulousness of the pattern, but also those colors that say Spring Is On Its Way, or if you are in the Southern Hemisphere, it may be saying, You’ve Had a Good Summer, Now It’s Time For Fall, but I’m not really seeing more than those saturated — while also being faded — yummy peaches and golds and magentas.

Quilting in Progress on Pineapple

As far as the other project goes, I have not yet keeled over, but am still working steadily on getting it quilted.  I’ve already ripped out several parts, but I think I know now what I’m doing, so that’s a relief, as any FMQ quilter can tell you.  I might just yet make that deadline of Tuesday.  Stay tuned.



Pineapples and Crowns Quilt Top is Finished

Pineapples and Crowns

That’s about all.

I finished appliquéing all the leaves for the pineapple crowns, as I like to think about it (thanks to Brenda, a reader of this blog), and sewed on the borders.  Happy to be at this place.  If I really push myself, potentially creating more stress than I’ll know what to do with, I could try and get this quilted and bound by our next guild meeting in two weeks, where we are showing off our 50/50 quilts challenge: finishing off UFO quilts that were more than 50% finished.  If all of sudden this blog goes dark, you’ll know what happened: I killed myself off.

More blog posts about this quilt are here and here and here, or use my handy-dandy search box to the right (it really works).

The tutorial to make the pineapple block, using paper-pieced method, is here.

I may change the name, but I’m trying this one out for a while.


Occasionally my blog software puts ads below my posts, so I can blog for free.  I do not control the content, nor the frequency.



Limping Along, Pineapple-Style

Pineapple Quilt Before

Take 1 (really it’s about Take 23).  While it’s fun to look at, I think it looks like I stuck the quilt in a light socket or something.  The petal/leaf things are like right on top of the pineapples and those tropical fruits need some breathing room.  But I’m loathe to mess with those borders, so I try something different.

Falling Pineapple Leaves

What if I organized the leaves by color: cool in the middle, warm on the outside?  Still not liking it.  This is a Truth-in-Advertising shot, showing how I load up the edges of my pin wall with related and unrelated junk.  Can’t help myself.

Pineapple quilt Borders Flipped

Leaves off.  Flip borders, so narrower light part (next to the green vine) is out and wider is next to the pineapples.

Pineapple Borders

More borders cut and sewn on.  I’m constructing the borders separately from the pineapple centers.  I made the fatal error of hand-appliquing on the vine.  I wanted to see what would happen if it were sewn down–it was really puckering before (it’s fine now).  But does that mean I have to hand appliqué all those sprightly leaves onto the thing?  (AAAAGH!)

Pineapple Quilt leaves

Poking the leaves/petals/whatever back on.  Trying to adjust for balance in size, number and color.  I feel obsessive.

PIneapple Quilt in Process Jan12

I think I’m pretty much there with the arrangement.  By flipping the borders, it gave the flowers more room, so they are not crowding the pineapple blocks anymore.  I’ll trim down the outer borders, but just that little bit gave the design some breathing room.

Classroom Corner A

I started back to school on Monday.  This is Corner A of my classroom, a windowless affair with a high distraction rating.  The computer is behind that roll top desk, next to the TV with the dinosaur.  Doesn’t every college classroom have a dinosaur?

Classroom Corner B

This is Classroom Corner B, with split personality model.  We are in the Respiratory Therapy classroom.  As Rachel noted on Instagram: “At least she’s wearing a shirt.”  Yep.

Chocolate from Around the WorldSo when I got home, even before we’d had dinner, I’d eaten most of Tanzania.  This lovely little box of chocolate is from Trader Joe’s and was a stocking stuffer gift from my husband.  They only carry this at Christmas, so I feel lucky to have it just for such emergencies as this.  Sao Tome may be gone after my next class.  I’m thinking I might have to take it with me and put it in the car, to have it as I drive home through the LA bumper-to-bumper traffic.  Yes, I might.