A lot of quilters are intimidated by the idea of making a medallion. For many, borders are either difficult or boring, or sometimes both! Many quilt designs/patterns use borders that are just long pieces of fabric enclosing the center. And it can be a struggle to make borders fit, whether they are pieced or not. (I think the “modern” style de-emphasizing borders reflects both of these issues.) A medallion with several borders can seem too hard.
In fact, anyone with a little basic quilting experience can make a medallion. Consider that many quilters’ first class is in making a sampler with several different block styles. Most of those blocks are harder than the units I regularly use in medallion borders.
Early this year when I submitted one version of my book proposal, I mailed two quilts to the publisher. Both were quilts created as projects for the book. I made the larger one about a year ago and the little one just before mailing it off. One of my intentions for both quilts was that they look doable, with borders using simple units.
The Little One, a 40″ square project, can be made in infinite ways. (In fact, all three of my project blueprints can be. I want you to make your quilt, not mine.) This is one take on that blueprint. It has five borders and I call it “Stained Glass” because of the luminous effect of the fabrics I used.
As you can see, the borders are pretty simple. There are flying geese close to the center, stripes/strips, hourglasses, and squares in a checkerboard. Almost everyone with a little experience can make these units.
You might remember another quilt I made this Spring, called “Stained Glass Too.” When I made the hourglass blocks for Stained Glass (above,) I decided some of them were a little murky with their value contrast. I pulled those and made replacements. The pulled ones became the center of their own quilt (and they felt vindicated and victorious!)
And to close out this post, I’ll show you the other book project quilt I mailed to that publisher. (YES, I did get my quilts back!) This one is called “Southwestern Sun” and it is 60″ square. Again, though it looks complex, the units are simple. See the linked post if you’d like to know more about it.
I was proud to submit Stained Glass and Southwestern Sun as part of my book proposal, and I have no regrets.