Friday, March 31, 2023

IBA March Challenge - Breaking Free

This month, Island Batik Ambassadors were given the challenge to create what ever they wanted.  

Let me tell you, that was a tough challenge.  I had the freedom to wander in any direction and there were so many directions to wander!  

I did have one constant though.  I knew I wanted to do something with the Exuberance ten inch precut that came in my January Ambassador box.  Exuberance is an original line by Deb Tucker of Studio 180 Design for Island Batik and is available in shops now.  Particularly these shops:

Block Party Studios IA
Creekside Quilts OR
Hancocks of Paducah KY
Tucker University OH
Castle Sewing Centre-CANADA BC
Mulqueen Sewing & Fabric Centers AZ
Amy's Quilt Room, PA
Boutique 4 Quilters, FL, CO

I My initial plan was use the whole precut, as in every inch of fabric from each 10 inch square. I wanted to try and eliminate any more scraps adding to my overflowing scrap bins.  So what to do??

After mulling things over, I came up with an idea that would let me use every bit of 40 of the squares.  I  decided to cut up each square into different shapes, mix and match the prints, and then sew them back together.  

I wanted some sashing to separate the different prints, but I didn't want the quilt to get humongous, so the sashing had to be thin. This is where my Accu Quilt 1 inch strip die came in handy.  I have cut these thin strips by hand in the past and the ruler does slide a bit once in a while cutting such thin strips, so it was nice to have this die.  As you can see I used a lot of one inch strips.

This finished design came together through trial and error.  Lots of ideas being thrown around with layouts and sashing, and a little bit of unstitching.

I started off with this block, but decided the outer edges needed to come off.  I also ended up taking the corner triangles off as well. Luckily I only sewed one block like this and not all 40.

I now have 80 left over triangles with white trim. I am envisioning a new smaller quilt for these.

I did a lot of switching things up and finally came up with the layout I loved.  

I was originally going to have a different print for each shape in the block, but I ended up liking pairs of the same print flanking the triangles instead of a random mix. It made the pattern easier on my eyes and helped showcase the prints better.

Once the top was done, it was on to quilting.  Time was running out so I was glad to have this bag of Heirloom 80/20 Bleached White Hobbs Batting from my January Ambassador box.  No franken-batting for this quilt!  Plus there is a lot of white in this quilt, so I really wanted the white batting to help keep it crisp and bright.

I quilted it using a light blue thread and a Schemtz universal 90/14 needle.  

It was the right sized needle to go with the thread it went through everything nice and smooth.

I did quick free hand wavy lines with swirls.  I was done with the quilting in about two hours.

My youngest son really loves this fabric line, he said the coloring and the patterns reminds him of sea coral. 

I have to agree with him. I really love these color combos.

I am calling this one "Breaking Free"

When I first cut all the shapes out of the ten inch squares I envisioned the triangles breaking free from the square to do their own thing.

 If you love this line too and want to see more projects using with it check out the Studio 180 designs blog. Deb Tucker is having a blog hop this week showcasing this fabric line!  Check out the link here:  Studio 180 Design Exuberance Blog Hop

Happy Quilting!



  1. Your quilt is gorgeous and it's wonderful how the process led you to something you loved!

  2. It's a fantastic quilt. So bright and happy.

  3. Stunning! I love the colors too, and oh, so much work. You did fabulous picking your own project and making a beauty.

  4. Stunning! I love the block and all the work that went into making it. Your son is right, it does look like coral. Congrats on another great Island Batik project.

  5. Holy goodness, Leah! This is an incredible quilt! And you are the only person on this entire planet who has this quilt! Amazing to think about, heh? Are you going to release a pattern for it? Thanks for including a Canadian shop with this fabric.

  6. That is so beautiful! Very effective design work. Great job!

  7. I love this so much! SO GOOD!!! My socks are knocked off. Great and fun design.

  8. Wow! Another gorgeous quilt! I loved reading about how this came together. It's fabulous!

  9. This is a beautiful quilt! The design is super modern and elegant.

  10. I love this so much, Leah!! What a beautiful quilt!