How many ways can you quilt a Swoon?

Well, It’s Monday and that means it’s time for another post in the “Deciding What to Quilt Series”. This post is my biggest one yet, but it has to be….because we are featuring the Swoon quilt. The Swoon quilt pattern was designed by Camille Roskelley and is the subject of a massive quilt-along hosted by the pied piper of quilting, Katy. (I heard someone on twitter call her that and I thought it was so fitting!) Picking out quilting designs for such a neat quilt is probably even harder than picking out fabrics… many different options! I will give you a few, but they will barely scratch the surface!

I had the opportunity to quilt a swoon quilt, featuring Jennifer Sampou’s fabric, for Quilt Market. Ramona pieced the quilt and did a fabulous job!
swoon quilt pattern

Camille has agreed to pop in and tell us how she thought it should be quilted. It seems only right that the person that designs the quilt should get to give us her opinion!
Here is what she had to say:

Honestly, when I designed Swoon, the first thought I had was that it had to be quilted right. It had to have a more modern feel, but still go along with the traditional feel of the block. The baptist fan popped into my head, and I just couldn’t shake it. My local quilter, Andrea, was not only game, but completed it for me in a day so I could have it for Quilt Market. I thought it complimented my version of Swoon so perfectly. If I were to make another one (which I will, someday when I have a spare moment!) I would love to do straight line quilting, or have Angela do some of her swirly magic on it. Hmm… might have to get started…

another view of a swoon quilt

Photo by Camille Roskelley

Thanks Camille for sharing with us today! I love what you suggested. The one thing that I love about this quilt pattern is the large scale of the blocks. The fact that the blocks are so large means that an allover design won’t take away from their beauty!

swoon quilting

Photo by Natalia Bonner

Natalia recently quilted this Swoon quilt with an all-over chevron design. I love how it looks on the quilt…..just beautiful!

modern quilting on a swoon quilt

Photo by Natalia Bonner

But the large scale of the blocks also means that you can try quilting designs that wouldn’t normally fit in a quilt block. Since there are so many elements to the block, I will break it down into two parts, the center and the outer parts.

Center of the blocks:

Since it is hard to see the quilting in the picture that I have, I drew out an example of what I did in the center of the blocks:

ideas for how to quilt a swoon quilt

There is a lot going on, but it’s because there is so much room to play with! My favorite part of the center is the curved lines in between the points of the star. I love how it  brings the whole look together. If you use the same fabric in this area as you did in the background, you could also consider using the same design that you used in the background.

In the points of the star, I did some simple straight lines…..I thought that they would contrast with the curvier lines.

In the center of the star, I quilted a swirly feather. It was an indulgent pick….I wanted to quilt a feather and the center of the star seemed as good of place as any. If I would have known that I would be discussing it in this much detail, I may have picked a different design. Oh well! You can’t hardly see it in quilt becuase the fabric hides it, but this is how I did it.

To quilt a feather in a square, start from the corner and make a line that swirls in (picture 1). Stop in the center and quilt the feather working your way back out, filling in the whole space (picture 2)

For the outer ring of the block, I quilted each block differently….the fabric was busy enough to handle it! In some of the blocks I quilted the outer ring as a single piece, using lines that radiated out from the middle:

ideas for how to machine quilt a swoon quilt

Doing this was especially easy since I was able to use the points of the block as my guides……I just angled the lines toward them.  Doing this also helps draw attention to the center of the square.

In some of the blocks I treated each of the pieces differently, and that gave it a totally different look. Here are some of the different things I tried.

If you decide to quilt the blocks with a custom design, then you also need to figure out what to do in the background. When I quilted it, I used a gentle wavy line as a background filler. I thought that it went with the fun, party attitude of the fabric.
picture of a swoon quilt quiltled with modern quilting designs

Since the blocks make such a big statement, I would suggest just picking out your favorite design and using matching thread. That way the quilt blocks can take center stage!

Well that about sums it up for now! Like I said earlier, there are so many fun things you could quilt on this quilt. Let this be the starting point to let your creativity fly!

Since Katy has sent me her Swoon quilt to quilt…..I would love to hear your ideas or see what you have done! Please leave your suggestions and/or links to your quilts in the comment section. I can sure use all the inspiration I can use, I don’t want to let her down!

And……I will be back later today with my fun news….

Happy Quilting!

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  1. I like all and especially the Baptist Fans! For a change though, those swirly florals -almost feathers would really be beautiful. There is room for feathers if you chose… Can’t wait to see what you end up doing!

  2. I came over here from Katy’s blog – and I just love this post. It is so helpful thank you!
    I really, really like the chevron quilting. I think it goes so well with the modern feel that this wonderful pattern and quilt needs.
    When I eventually come that far I’ll use the QAYG-method.
    This is one addicting and wonderful quilt – I love it!

  3. I love your idea of a different design in each block. But I also love the baptist fans, and have done since I first saw Camille’s quilt. And since I bought the kit to make it in Ruby, I just can’t stop thinking about the baptist fans! So that’s probably how I will go – but never fear, Swoon mk II is also in progress, and that can be custom quilted!

    Thanks so much for this series, Ange, it’s so helpful and fun!

  4. i am so excited for this post! i am on block #3 of my swoon, and was wondering how to quilt it! the fans are awesome, as is the chevron. but i also love the texture of the lines you quilted around the outer ring and the pretty feathers. i don’t know how you ever make a decision, so many great ideas!

  5. Another push to get started on my own Swoon! Fabrics collected, pattern in hand and all this inspiration too. All the different styles are stunning how do you decide?

  6. I quilted mine much more uniform (big x thru the center & then echo-ed from in each quadrant), but I love your ideas!!

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