Way back in July, I reviewed a website called YouPatch, which allows users to create their own pixelated quilt patterns. You upload a photo, adjust the resolution/size of your squares and quilt, select your Kona solids, and boom: ten bucks later, out pops a PDF pattern with yardage requirements, time estimates, and step-by-step instructions. I was, at the time, working on a top secret project. End result of my endeavors? Sparty, the mascot of Michigan State University!
The Sparty quilt was a tenth-anniversary present for my husband, who is (obviously) a huge MSU fan. We have a Spartan room in our basement and I knew that this would be a perfect fit. The quilt ended up being 54″ square, and I ended up choosing 1″ squares for the resolution. The resulting pattern ended up having 978 pieces, which sounds like a lot (and it was), but the quilt was actually quite doable. The YouPatch system of sewing squares into larger blocks, as well as combining consecutive identically colored squares into larger cuts, made it possible for me to complete the top within two weeks.
The back I created by designing a Spartan block “S” on graph paper, and then surrounding it with my husband’s
disgusting lovingly retired MSU T-shirts. It was actually my first time making a T-shirt quilt, and I used Pellon Shapeflex interfacing beneath the shirts before I cut them into rectangles. They turned out great, though there may have been a small amount of protest when someone found up I actually had to cut the shirts up to make a quilt (who knew?!).
Finally, I rented out some longarm time from Amy Wade Originals and found a Spartan helmet quilting motif in her software. I was afraid that the design would detract from the pixelated image, but we decided to make them large and less dense. It turned out wonderfully.
Finally, I bound the quilt with a print that features roses to commemorate MSU’s recent Rose Bowl victory. The geometric shapes in the print also look like ancient Greek design on the binding, though I didn’t even notice that when I picked out the print!
So, final verdict on YouPatch? It’s a winner. My husband loved his Sparty quilt, and I do too. I’m glad we have this quilt for the winter months; after all, basketball season’s just getting started! GO GREEN!
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