March 5, 2013

Twilight Saga Charity Quilt: Bella & Edward's Cottage

I stared into the violet dark. There, nestled into a small clearing in the forest, was a tiny stone cottage, lavender gray in the light of the stars.

It belonged here so absolutely that it seemed as if it must have grown from the rock, a natural formation. Honeysuckle climbed up one wall like a lattice, winding all the way up and over the thick wooden shingles. Late summer roses bloomed in a handkerchief-sized garden under the dark, deep-set windows. There was a little path of flat stones, amethyst in the night, that led up to the quaint arched wooden door.
–Bella Cullen, Breaking Dawn, page 475

Bella & Edward's Cottage
Designed and pieced by Beth as part of our Give-to-Win Twilight Saga Charity Quilt.

For every $5 donation to George Mark Children's House, you get one chance to win this quilt. Visit the Twilight Saga Quilt Page for more details.

From Beth:
I have a thing for houses. How they’re made and how their pieces represent the people that call them home. So no wonder I loved bringing this image to the quilt! The description in the book is fairly succinct. It was just a matter of finding fabric with the correct patterns. I found a shop online and ordered several different patterns and colors of rock and stone, and they also offered different colors of roof shingles!

Once I looked at the pattern sizes and put together complementary shades, I drafted the cottage. I wanted an asymmetrical structure to add some quaintness with curving lines and dormer windows and, of course, a chimney. I planned on setting the house against waves of green fabric with my favorite lavender, scrolly material above as the “violet sky.” But when I found the forest-scape fabric, it was beyond perfect. It came in a deeper, darker green, but I chose this more vibrant green because of the yellows in the trees throughout, since it was early fall in the book. I moved the cut-out of the house stone around on the forest fabric until I found the backdrop look I wanted with the side trees and the pines peaking up above the chimney.

I appliquéd the stone of the cottage onto the backdrop, then the roof thatching (which was difficult around the dormer window cut out) and the chimney. I used some wood bark fabric for the front door, then hand-stitched outline details to give the chimney it’s 3D corners.

I cut out the backdrop fabric where I’d stitch in the violet sky, but after I put the lavender piece in, things didn’t look right. So I cut around the trees to add more sky showing on the sides and then top-stitched the trees for added reinforcement. I appliquéd on the three windows in a dark (almost black) gray, hand-stitched the door hinges, handle and dormer details, then satin stitched both sets of eaves.

I tried satin stitching the pathway stones in purple, but wasn’t satisfied with the result so I opted to appliqué each of those in an amethyst fabric. I had always planned on ribbon embroidery for the rose bushes and honeysuckle, utilizing simple brown floss backstitches for the rose bushes themselves, but with the lush green of the now-changed background, I was afraid they’d get lost. So I utilized one of the green patterns I had planned to originally use for the green waves of backdrop. I noticed the pattern had small bush-like groupings if I strategically cut them, so I free hand appliquéd those as well.

I used silk ribbon in red to ribbon embroider the roses on the bushes. I’ve always loved this technique and really like how it gives some texture to the block. Lastly, I chose very vibrant DMC flosses to free hand embroider the honeysuckle. I used backstitches for vine, lazy daisies for leaves, 5-point backstitched stars for flowers and French knots for buds.

Although I’m newer to quilting, this block will always be one of my favorites. I really enjoyed making it and am very pleased with the results!

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JoyceH said...

This block os absolutely lovely!! Your fabric choices are spot-on, and I love the design of the house. I want to go inside and curl up with a good book.

Elizabeth said...

Beth, I love, love, love this block. It looks just like the cottage in the book! So beautiful! I especially love your embroidered details! Nicely done!

xo -E

hardhatcat said...

such a beautiful block. I love the attention to detail and perfect choice of fabrics

Well done!