A few months ago, my friend Rebecca Bryan from Bryan House Quilts asked me if I wanted to play with her new Panache fabric, her premier line for Robert Kaufman Fabrics. One look at the fabric line, and I was sold. Of COURSE I wanted to play with it!
I’ve been wanting to create a pattern exclusively for newsletter subscribers, and as I played around with simple and fun mini quilt/pillow patterns, this one jumped out at me. You could say it electrified me. Inspired by lightning, the Superbolt Mini Quilt came to be.
A superbolt is a bolt of lightning around a hundred times brighter than normal. On Earth, one in a million lightning strikes is a superbolt.
That’s pretty special, isn’t it? Absolutely worthy of its own quilt pattern!
I had a lot of fun sewing with Becca’s fabrics, since she totally nailed my favorite color palette with this fabric line. Teals and magentas, blues and purples, a bit of gold, and of course a solid showing of black and whites. The stripes are a really fun addition, and while I don’t usually gravitate toward stripes, I find myself wanting to work these in anywhere I can!
It was tough to limit myself to just a few of the colors, but with my design I had to pick my top favorites. Turquoise and magenta won the day, and that perfect purple print with both turquoise and magenta details, called Energy in Berry, was the perfect middle man! Plus, I can’t think of a better fabric name to go in a Superbolt!
I quilted Superbolt with a variety of color-coordinating Aurifil 50wt and 40wt threads. I quilted straight lines in the lighting bolt white sections using 50wt thread in 2600-Dove and the walking foot on my Bernina 560. I’ve been wanting to practice free motion quilting ever since taking Christa Watson’s class at QuiltCon, but haven’t had the right sized project to dive in. I finally bit the bullet with this mini, since using coordinating colors of thread meant I had room to mess up without it being very noticeable. The good news is, I am really happy with how smoothly the quilting ended up, and my confidence is built enough that I think I will be playing with free motion quilting a lot more in the future, even for larger quilts.
I used a different design in each colored section, and tried to choose mostly curved designs for the darker areas, with more angular and sharp designs for the light ones. I used 40wt 1148-Light Jade in the teal section (Charisma in Seafoam from Panache), 50wt 2535-Magenta in the purple (Energy in Berry), and 40wt 1100-Red Plum in the bright pink (Spirit in Pink). Because the thread color blends in so well, it’s hard to see how fantastic my free motion quilting was, so you’ll just have to take my word for it! LOL
I found the perfect backing fabric for this mini in my stash, Aloe Vera in Candy from Pretty Potent by Anna Maria Horner, and with the addition of a few leftover blocks from the mini quilt top, it came together as a really fun quilt back.
The striped fabric makes a perfect binding, but also makes a great label! I took the photo before I hand stitched the top edge, and don’t mind that top stray thread that escaped my snips, but I love how easy the stripes made it to write in a straight line! I usually kilter when I write, so having that extra guide was super helpful.
In between the family holiday fun this next month, I will be writing up this Superbolt mini quilt pattern and as soon as it’s ready, it will head out to all of my email newsletter subscribers. Those of you on the list know that my emails are sparse; at most once per week, but more often once per month. Being on my email newsletter list is a way to ensure you’re in the know and the first one to hear about any new patterns, projects, or fun events in the Night Quilter world. You can opt-in HERE.