Applique Blog

Hawaiian Quilting, 2 Fabric Applique, Lessons and so much more!

European River Cruise with Nancy

A message from Nancy:

Nancy Lee Chong tulip Hawaiian quilt blocks

I am so excited that I'll be teaching on a European River Cruise April 2019. In fact, we will be cruising from Amsterdam and returning to Amsterdam 7 days later, with stops in: Zaanse Schans, Veere, Antwerp (optional side excursion to Bruges), Arnhem, Hoorn (optional side excursion to Edam and Volendam), and return to Amsterdam for a visit to the Keukenhof Gardens.

Nancy Lee Chong

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Sea Turtles and Dolphins

Sea Turtles and DolphinsThis month I thought it would be fun to share the story of how Sea Turtles and Dolphins came to be. This has proved to be the perfect collaboration between Nancy and Janice.

Nancy and Janice collaborate in different ways
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Sweet Peas for Grandma

Sweet Peas for Grandma Hawaiian Wall Quilt PatternHawaiian quilters have long been known to make special quilts. I wanted to create a Hawaiian Wall quilt with a special meaning. Sweet Peas for Grandma was designed with my Grandma Myrt in mind. She always grew sweet peas in her garden in Minnesota.

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Hawaiian Snowflake

Drum Roll Please

Nancy has designed a spectacular new Hawaiian Bed Quilt Pattern for us. This is Hawaiian Snowflake or Haukea (pronounced How-kay-a).

Hawaiian Snowflake Bed Quilt

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Applique: Points

Woodland Lei Hawaiian Wall Quilt Pattern

We find it is often the outside points that are the most off-putting to people considering an applique pattern. Far too often we watch someone put back a pattern with a comment like, "Too many points!" It makes us sad to think that someone would not choose their favorite pattern, just because they don't feel they can applique the points. So, we want to show you our technique for outside points, and hope that you will never again turn away from a pattern you really like, just because of the points.

Two Secrets for Sharp Points:
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Design your Personal Hawaiian Quilt

Continue the Tradition

Lilikoi Hawaiian Wall Quilt Pattern

Hawaiian quilters have long been known to make special quilts for each of their children and grandchildren, choosing a design motif and colors that had personal meaning to the person who would receive the quilt. Until commercial patterns became available in the 1970's and 1980's quilters either designed their own quilts, or were given a pattern from a close friend or relative. No two quilts were identical, to honor the spirit of the quilter and the person receiving the quilt.
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I want a Smaller, No a Larger Quilt

We are frequently asked if a wall-hanging pattern can be enlarged for a bed quilt. Or, if a bed quilt pattern can be reduced to make a wall-hanging. Here are our thoughts and suggestions.
In general, we design quilt patterns to be a specific size. We fill the available space with motifs and elements that are proportioned to that size. For a large quilt we can fill the space with more flowers, leaves or whatever the design elements are to create a pleasing arrangement that is typically more intricate than a smaller design. It is generally best to choose a pattern that you like from the patterns available in that size range. We believe you will be happier with the outcome.
If you want to make a small quilt larger: first consider these things:
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Hawaiian Quilt Patterns

Machine Applique and Hawaiian Quilt Patterns

Can I fuse and machine applique a Hawaiian quilt?

If you are making a block, then yes, you can fuse and machine stitch. Machine applique can be an appropriate technique for decorating a tote bag, for example. (Be sure to remove the turn-under allowance that is built into our Hawaiian quilt patterns.)
In our opinion, if you are making a larger quilt it is:
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Hawaiian Quilt Bounty

Hawaiian Block Quilt Patterns

Tropical Fruit and Nut Hawaiian Block Quilt PatternsWhen we give thanks at this time of year we always celebrate the bounty of the fall harvest. Although, the fruits and nuts in this Hawaiian pohopoho-style quilt are likely to bloom and present their bounty at varying times of the year.

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Fast Beginner Hawaiian Wall Quilt

Cyclamen

Cyclamen Hawaiian Wall Quilt Pattern

This is a plant most of you have seen, but may not know its name. It is a favorite house plant in colder climates for its colorful blooms, and is a garden plant in warmer climates. READ MORE >
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Modern Ulu

Create your own

Here is my contemporary layout using our Ulu/Breadfruit block. This block can be found in our Tropical II block pattern set, and it is the pattern that

Modern Ulu by Connie Johnson Sayler using Pacific Rim Quilt Company Tropical II Block

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Sea Turtles and Dolphins

A bit of Hawaiian Quilt Tradition

Sea Turtles and Dolphins Hawaiian Wall QuiltWhen you look at picture books of old Hawaiian quilts you may notice that the design motifs almost never include fish, animals or birds. Why not, you ask?

It was believed by Hawaiian quilters in the past that if you put fish, animals or birds on a quilt that anyone sleeping under the quilt

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Stuck?

Reach for something new

Grapes 2 Fabric Applique Quilt Pattern

At one time or another we are all guilty of resisting the urge to try something new because we have a preconceived notion about how hard it might be, or that it is somehow inappropriate. Following are just a few examples. Put yourself to the test. What misconceptions may be holding you back? READ MORE >
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What's the difference

Hawaiian Quilts vs. 2 Fabric Applique Quilts

Woodland Lei Hawaiian Wall Quilt Pattern

Dog and Daisy 2 Fabric Applique Quilt Pattern

You may have wondered what exactly are the differences? What determines whether one of our patterns is Hawaiian or 2 Fabric Applique?

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Pohopoho style, with sashing

Tropical Floral Hawaiian Block Pattern

Tropical Floral is an example of the pohopoho style of Hawaiian Quilt. Poho means "patch", so pohopoho means many patches, or blocks.

Blocks can be assembled with or without sashing. When sashing is used the traditional echo quilt lines continue...
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Why we love applique

Here is our list of the many things we like about hand applique.

Pacific Rim Quilt Company, needleturn applique

Chances are pretty good, that because you are reading our blog you are convinced already that applique is fun. You know that creating something beautiful with your hands is peaceful and satisfying. But if you still need some convincing here is our list:

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Hawaiian Quilt Designs

An Evolving Tradition

Lei Kukui Hawaiian Bed Quilt Pattern

For over a century the only way you could own a Hawaiian quilt was to design and make it yourself, or be the very fortunate recipient of a special gift. A few talented designers would give their individual designs to others as gifts, but there were no patterns available for purchase. And, it was kapu (taboo) to copy the design of another quilter without their permission.

Out of necessity and practicality, during a Hawaiian quilting revival in the 1970's and 1980's a few pattern books emerged
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Echo Quilting from Different Directions

Orchid Oasis echo quilting lines

When Lines Converge

The concept of echo quilting is easy: Evenly spaced rows of quilting radiating out from the applique. But what do you do when quilting lines begin to merge between a center medallion and an outer border? Or in the center of a quilt that has a large open center? Or, when the shapes of the applique cause the lines to bump into each other? The principles are the same:

  • You want an equal number of quilting rows coming from each direction until the lines meet.
  • You need to draw the lines in from each direction to find where they will meet before doing any quilting in that area.
  • You do not control the shapes created by the intersecting lines, they will be what they will be.
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Portable Travel Projects

Woodland Lei Hawaiian Wall Quilt Pattern

Are you traveling this summer?

I have to admit one of the best things about travel is the fact that I have time to applique! I do not have as much time as I would like when it comes to appliqueing. It is one of my favorite things in the quilting world.

I was lucky enough to fly to Wyoming

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Multi-Colored Hawaiian Quilts

Lilikoi Hawaiian Wall Quilt

When 2 colors just won't do

With these thoughts about tradition in mind, let's consider the use of color in Hawaiian quilting. Have you wondered if Hawaiian quilts are ever made with more than just two fabrics - two colors? The use of two or more colors of applique fabric Multi-colored Hawaiian Quilt is relatively new. It is seen rarely in older quilts, then more frequently from the 1980's to today.

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