Friday, October 5, 2012

Kitchen Mat - Quilt As You Go

Ever since I started working on my bottled rainbows quilt, I have been a little obsessed.  

My obsession?  

Quilt as you go (QAYG)! 

Quilt as you go is a quilting technique where you quilt each square to the batting (and sometimes the backing) before piecing the blocks.    

If you have ever thrown a quilt across the room, cursed, stomped and possibly even cried, while trying to quilt a project all at once, you just might want to try QAYG.  
{Yes, I've actually done this.  Ask Doug.}

For a few weeks I've really wanted to try making a kitchen mat using the quilt as you go technique.  I wanted to practice attaching binding on a smaller, less important project before attaching the binding to my bottled rainbows quilt.  

I used a log cabin variation ( I didn't even know what that was two months ago) to make my mat.  

I chose four colors:  purple, orange, green and pink.  

After I added the middle pieces, I thought it would be nice to add a bit of neutral.  But, cream or light beige didn't seem like a good idea since the mat will be gracing my kitchen floor (and I'm VERY messy).  

I remembered a bunch of old denim jeans I'd been saving and decided to add denim!

I love the improvisational aspect of this project.  It is like coloring a picture - hmmm, what color do I want to use next?  I used no exact measurements, just decided what I wanted to do with each new piece of fabric added.  

I even purposely left the selvage on some of the pieces.  

I don't know why, but I love the little colored, numbered circles.

The following picture shows me about half way through the project.  The striped, beige background is actually an old quilt that I cut up and used as batting.  I sewed the new fabric directly onto the old quilt piece. 

I'm very excited about finding this use for my old quilts! 

 For the back of the mat I used one large piece of Jennifer Paganelli fabric.  

 Here is a picture of the finished mat hanging from a palo verde (or palo brea?) tree.  Don't the greens in the mat look great next to the gorgeous green branches?  The little monkey climbing in the tree is pretty cute, too.

 I learned a lot about the quilt as you go process on this little project and now I have a colorful (surprise, surprise) mat in my kitchen!  It may kill someone if I don't get some anti-slip material, but hey, it's cute! 

Today I will be stepping away from the sewing machine to actually engage with the humans in my life.

Hope you all have a great weekend!

And, oh, here is some oatmeal.  My secret to oatmeal my kids cheer for?  A splash of vanilla!


  1. Love it! What was the finished size of the mat?

    I have done a few things QAYG and it is so freeing.

  2. What a great-looking mat! Totally inspiring.

  3. Love it Melissa!! I have some patchwork kitchen mats on my "list of things to make for the new house" -- can't wait!! Lovely as usual!

    xx, M

  4. great looking mat, great job with the quilt as you go process.

  5. This is so random. Do you have any idea how old your Palo Verde is? I'm planting some in my backyard and am wondering how long it will take for them to grow into nice good climbing trees. And your mat is adorable!