Designing an Art Quilt

In our travels we’ve taken thousands of pictures.  We’re working on picking some of our favorites and displaying them around our home.  I love the village of Mendocino and have fond memories of getting up early on a spring day and walking the streets taking pictures.  See my blog post


Tutorial of My Travel Quilt

Pick 8 photos and transfer them to fabric.  I know many people do this themselves and there are plenty of videos online for doing so.  I chose to use Spoonflower  https://www.spoonflower.com which is an online custom fabric company.  You can order their fabric proofs which are 8″ square and cut them down to 6-1/2″.  These work perfectly for this quilt.  I was very happy with their service.

I wanted to add a traditional feeling to the quilt. I chose an old pattern called Spool and Bobbin.

Fabric Requirements:

For each 12″ square you will need:

A.  2 ea. 6-1/2″ fabric photos

B.   1 ea. 3-7/8″ square Light Colored fabric.  Cut this square in half diagonally.

C.  1 ea. 6-7/8″ square Dark Colored fabric.  Cut this square in half diagonally.

D.  2 ea. 3-1/2″ squares Dark Colored fabric (different fabric from #3

Decide on placement of fabrics and photos by laying them out.

Construction:  Using this illustration sew block together.


Section 1
Section 2
Section 3
Section 4
Section 5 (Completed Square)


I put the squares together, then offset with a blue border.  At this point I had already added the header, but had to take it off when I decided to paint the name Mendocino across the top.


I practiced painting the letters on another piece of fabric, then decided I would simplify the lettering.

I traced the letters on to the header fabric using a lightbox.

I goofed on my first attempt.  The “O’s” were too big.

I finally got the lettering right, then made appliqué morning glories.  I attached them with satin stitch and used satin stitch for the vine.

I reattached the header to the body of the quilt and added a blue border all around.

Than I quilted the rest of the quilt free motion.  I used a stencil for the rose buds and outlined the photos with a silver metallic thread.


I used a dark blue for the double french binding all around.  This is my first unique quilt creation!

On a sideline:  Went blueberry picking today with a couple of my wonderful friends, Virginia and Ellen.  They have been so good to me since moving to Waldport by inviting me to local events they attend every year.


Came home, bagged them up and put most in the freezer.  Will make muffins tomorrow morning!

I love this coastal life!

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