Quilting Along: {Big} City Girl QAL quilt is done!

by Judy Tucker

Last fall I joined the {Big} City Girl QAL, a quilt along group on Flickr.  I heard about the group when our quilt guild, Proper Bostonian Quilters, was given a challenge to make Amy Friend's Boston's Zakim Bridge Block.  If you scroll down that link to her blog, you'll see the block all the great entries submitted by our guild.

Designers from around the globe were asked to create a quilt block that reflected the city were they live.
There were pieced blocks, appliqué blocks and paper pieced blocks.  All the blocks are beautiful.  Some of the blocks were easy to make, some were challenging!  My paper piecing skills definitely improved working on this project!

Group members were invited to create blocks of other cities and share them on the site.  Some beautiful blocks were added by QAL members.  You can see all the blocks at  the {Big} City Girl Flickr site.
Capetown, Pretoria, Istanbul, Melbourne, Munich, Vienna, London, New York were some of the great added blocks. The project ended at the end of November, 2013, but folks are still out there sewing which is awesome.  A beautiful San Francisco block showing the Painted Ladies houses with the Golden Gate Bridge in the background was just recently added.

I'd never made a paper pieced pattern but wanted a block for Rome and a friend wanted a Hamburg block.  Some of the designers used EQ to design their blocks but others designed the blocks by hand.  Seeing how the hand drawn blocks were put together encouraged me to give it a try too. I drew the picture I wanted, scanned it into the computer and then flipped that image horizontally on the computer.   That gave me the mirror image of picture which you need to use to paper piece a block. Then I cut out the pieces pasted them to another sheet of paper and drew seam allowances around the pieces.  The last step was to rescan the cut pieces for my final pattern.  It took a few tries but it worked!  The original Hamburg block is in my quilt.  But the pattern I gave to my friend has the doors open so she cut add a family photo to the doorway!  It was so much fun adding the opening and closing doors and having that pattern work!

I thought I was just going to make a wall hanging of some of the cities where I've lived:  Rome, Boston and Paris.

But the blocks were all so beautiful and so much fun to make that I ended up with enough blocks for a quilt too!  It's finally finished.  I love it.

The cities included in my quilt are, from left to right, Hamburg, London, Vancouver, Tokyo, Warsaw, Berlin, Wellington, Sydney and Alesund.

Here all 3 photos of the quilt taken in different light. They all show different aspects of the quilting.

Outdoors, cloudy day.  This has the best color and is the best overall photo of the quilt, but it doesn't show off the quilting.

Outdoors, late afternoon winter sun.  This shows off the texture from the quilting but it's hard to see the blocks.

Indoor lighting shows the quilting details nicely.  While  Fluorescent light may be good for the environment,  it  dulls and alters the colors of the quilt.

You can still get the patterns for the blocks by going to the {Big} City Girl link on Aylin's blog at Aylin-Nilya.blogspot.de.   Thanks so much to Aylin and Amy for moderating this fabulous QAL and for the amazing designers who contributed blocks of their home town!  I have had the best time working this project!