I’m pleased to present my version of the Boomerang quilt: Kinniken’s Dragon. This one is headed out to my brother on the east coast.
The minute I saw the Boomerang pattern by Jaybird Quilts, I knew I wanted to make it. I also loved the way Angela Walters quilted the one on the cover of the pattern, and I couldn’t wait to try something similar myself.
Of course, it didn’t quite turn out the way I envisioned it at first. To start with, I chose ombre and patterned fabrics, not solids.
I picked coordinating colors and planned for each diamond block to include both the ombre and the mottled fabric. The pattern was really easy to work with. I did pick up the Super Sidekick ruler, and I highly recommend it. It made it a snap to make all the triangle patches.
I loved the way the blocks turned out, but when I arranged them on my design wall the way the pattern suggested, I was disappointed in the result:
This layout looks fantastic with blocks made from solid, coordinating fabrics. With the ones I chose, it just looked messy and chaotic.
I left it there for a couple of days. Every now and then I’d stand in front of it, seeking inspiration. Finally, I wondered what it would look like if I (gasp) turned one of the blocks the other way:
I’m not kidding, y’all, it took me three days to think of this. Even then I wasn’t completely sold, because I knew it would make it harder to quilt it the way Angela quilted hers. But I left it like that for another couple of days.
Then I thought, “Hmm, what if I grouped the colors together into patches?”
This is when I finally realized I was going to have a quilt I loved at the end of this process. The shimmery texture reminded me of dragon or fish scales, and I was listening to Lord Valentine’s Castle while making this quilt, and its name suddenly came to me. (For those readers who aren’t avid sci-fi/fantasy fans, Kinniken’s Dragon is the name of a gigantic sea creature from that series, a water-king, part whale and part dragon. Well, not his real name. Just what people call him.)
I still had a ways to go before I got the blocks just the way I wanted them. Here’s a gallery of the progress shots. Some of the changes are quite subtle.
And here is the final arrangement with the setting blocks added along the edges, sewn together into the finished quilt top:
I chose a wide newspaper-print fabric for the back and a gorgeous stripey binding that I promptly fell in love with.
It took me a while to decide how to quilt it. I wanted to match the thread colors to the top so that they would blend in, and I was mostly successful. But it meant swapping thread several times. I quilted the straight lines first to stabilize the quilt. Well, also because I can’t do free-motion work with my ruler foot without the thread breaking, but that’s a topic for another time. Then I filled in with the feathers and the wishbones.
I’m so pleased with the final result. Now to pack it up and ship it east!