Mama Bear: A quilt for DH

This is "Mama Bear". Not only is this the largest quilt I've ever made (a generous queen size, nearly king), but it's also double-sided! So fun! 

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I finished this beauty from my FAL list a couple of weeks ago, but I wanted to wait until it was received before I shared it online. My husband's aunt commissioned a quilt for the bed in their newly rebuilt cabin in northwestern Montana. The original cabin was a small off-the-grid A-frame that held a special place in the lives of most of my hubby's family. After a lot of years of love, the original cabin needed to be completely rebuilt and just recently was completed. My hubby's aunt, DH, had seen several of the quilts I had made for other family members and commissioned a quilt to grace the bed in their renovated cabin. Can I pause to say how completely honored and thrilled I was?! She had some great ideas (and photos) of inspiration bedding which helped shape the direction for this quilt. It was such a fun process and collaboration!

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The top (or maybe I should say, Side A) is a supersized bear paw block using Kona solids: Chinese Red (my absolute favorite red) and Bone. Inspired by knowing that the quilt was headed for a cabin in Montana, I wanted the top to be in keeping with a traditional look. I love classic red and white quilts and noted that these colors were featured in many of DH's inspiration photos. I decided to supersize the bear paw block (bears, woods, Montana... see where I'm going here?) and center it on the bed for a bold and graphic look. 

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A border near the drop and a binding in Chinese red finish off the top for a simple, clean look. But that's not all!

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DH loved the idea of making the quilt double-sided to change the look of the room periodically. Many of her inspiration photos included fall colors but she was also drawn to cobalt blues and peacock greens. I opted to do a jumbo patchwork back in all the colors she loves. It was so fun to get the chance to work in large scale prints, which I almost never get to use in most of my smaller patchwork. The back (or side B) features tons of Anna Maria Horner and Tula Pink along with some fabrics from my stash. I quilted this lovely in a simple grid in off-white thread to give it a soft drape.


I have to say, I had some concerns in taking on such a huge project initially (Will I be able to fit this whole quilt in my domestic machine? Where the heck am I gonna baste it?!?), but it really was a painless process. Both sides went together quickly and easily. I basted it on my hubby's classroom floor during winter break; yes, it took a LOT of pins. I drew on my quilting lines in washable Crayola marker once basting was complete and it wasn't any trickier to quilt on my machine than any of the other full or queen-sized quilts I've made. 

I'm happy to say, that "Mama Bear" is already at work in her new home. And her double-sided nature is being put to use as our aunt likes one side the best and my uncle likes the other, ha! 

Checking another item off my Finish-A-Long list!