Thursday, February 2, 2017

Stellar by Highway 10 Designs

Introducing Stellar the latest pattern from our very own Highway 10 Designs.  This isn't our typical offering, it does take more of a time investment, but we think it is well worth the effort! If you can sew an accurate 1/4" seam allowance, you can make this quilt.  Even though you see curves, it is fully constructed with straight seams!

People often ask where the inspiration for a quilt comes from.  This one started back in 2013 when my family took an RV trip to Yellowstone.  I was totally intrigued by the colors of these pools.

On the trip home, we saw a big billboard on a small highway advertising a quilt store, along with the words  "RV accessible," so with those images fresh in my mind I picked up this collection of batiks.  There was no plan at that point!

The fabric in the centre of the above photo was my favorite and I picked all the rest of the fabrics to go with it.  Strangely enough, that fabric didn't make the final cut into the quilt, but it was a good jumping off point.  

I have always loved the quilts made from the 54-40 or fight type of block where curves appear from straight piecing.  I loved the idea of putting a spin on that, so I started drawing options in EQ7 and sending them to Kathy for a second opinion.  I came up with a few I liked, but them quickly realized that I had limited amounts of fabric to work with, so the final design was a result of working within those parameters.   What at first seemed like a stumbling block, actually helped the final design come to be.

As a longarmer, my projects don't always get to the top of the pile very quickly.  This top was completed way back in September of 2014 and sat folded up waiting for quilting inspiration for 2 years!  Every once in a while I would doodle ideas, but that "aha" just didn't seem to come. (Maybe it just needed until my skills as a quilter reached a new level.)  Finally, with a local quilt show looming and a self-imposed deadline I went for it.

Straight lines in the star center and frames help to give the illusion that they are twinkling.  That part of the design came first.  My biggest struggle was how to handle all the different ways that the beige and medium brown sections came together.  The diamond motif with pebbles helped to divide things up.  I decided to treat all the beige sections with curly feathers, and all the medium brown with wavy lines.

The outer border got a bead board treatment to provide a nice frame.  

I couldn't be more thrilled with how the quilting turned out.  It really is "my style."   My husband likes this quilt too, as it is not overly feminine. 

I completed the quilting on this back in the fall of 2016, but it only recently came to live in its final home on my bed.  After the quilt show here in Dauphin, Kathy took it up to Flin Flon with her for its official photo shoot.  When you have a friend and business partner who takes the exquisite photos that Kathy does, you send your new baby off with her, because it will be worth it in the end!  Kathy gets the credit for all the beautiful shot of this quilt taken outdoors.  I appreciate the extra effort it took to get this big (92" x 100") quilt to cooperate in the elements!

Stellar is currently available for PDF download in our Etsy Store.    I see this as the kind of quilt that you make for YOURSELF or for an extra special person, or a special occasion like a wedding.  It does take some effort, but the pattern comes with many charts and diagrams to keep you organized along the way.  This is the kind of quilt that looks much harder to make than it really is - it's just a few straight seams!


  1. Congratulations, Lori and Kathy. Stellar is truly stellar and the quilting is stunning. You have outdone yourself. Now I am really sad I wasn't able to make the Dauphin show!