WIP: Maple Leaf Quilt

Most of my projects tend to be big and complicated and take a lot of time. As a result, I have plenty of WIPs (works-in-progress): novels, quilts, me… 🙂 So I’ve decided to post about a bed quilt I’m making even though it isn’t finished yet, because it could be a long time before it’s done.

The center of my maple leaf quilt

Back in 2001, I was part of a quilt block exchange group in the Tompkins County Quilters Guild. We made maple leaf blocks using batik and batik-like fabrics. I came up with an unusual layout for the blocks not long after I received them, but I didn’t actually put them together until recently. I love blocks on-point (so that they look like diamonds instead of a grid), so I found a way to do that with the blocks I had. About half the leaf blocks in my quilt were made by friends. The rest were made by me.

The observant may have noticed that not all my leaves look the same. I intentionally made some wonky blocks using the techniques in Cut Loose Quilts: Stack, Slice, Switch, and Sew by Jan Mullen, and I really liked the results. To me, the odd angles make the leaves look like they’re dried and curly — like real leaves lying on the forest floor. So I mixed in my wonky leaves with the regular ones for a more interesting quilt.

My goal is to make this quilt big enough for our king-sized bed, which means it needs to be a lot bigger than it is at the moment. The final quilt needs to be about 100″ square, so I have to make the center section wider and then add a border or two. I’ve decided to make two strips of blocks to go on either side of the center panel. I couldn’t face making another leaf block (even though it’s been years since I made the last one), so I choose another pattern that goes with the outdoor, autumnal theme: flying geese. I already have a few done…

Wild goose chase blocks

My current goal is to have this quilt finished within ten years of starting it, which gives me at least one more year. Ideally, though, it’ll be done in time to go on the bed for this coming fall. I’d love to have autumn leaves scattered in the bedroom at the same time they are falling outside. But I still have a long way to go.

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