Welcome, my fellow butterfly lovers! Today we are starting a new adventure — the Butterfly Garden quilt sew along. Say goodbye to your gray chrysalis of the past and helloooooo to the fabulous color journey you are about to take!
I went on a meandering and beautiful color journey in preparation for this sew along. There were some exciting moments with bright fabrics and unexpected combinations! I set a 15 minute timer for myself to see what I could come up with during that allotted time. It added a whole new level of focus and experimentation.
After rifling through lots and LOTS of fabrics, believe it or not, I STILL haven't made a decision on what direction I should take. I'm going to need your help! But first, let's cover some general housekeeping so you know what to expect during a Suzy Quilts sew along.
You May Also Like...
What's a Suzy Quilts Sew Along?
I'm so glad you asked! Here at Suzy Quilts we like to follow up a pattern release with a multi-week community sew along to give you an opportunity to make a quilt with the designer of the quilt — me, Suzy!
I'll go over extra examples, break down the steps even further, and give you a chance to ask questions that come up along the way. These sew alongs are supplementary to the pattern, so even though we cover a lot, we don't cover everything. You do still need the pattern.
I know that life can get busy and you can't follow along with every sew along we offer (which is four per year!) These sew alongs stay on the blog forever and are easy to find so you can follow along at your own pace. Just pop over to the Sew Along tab where you can surf past sew alongs.
The Main FAQs
- NO Sign-up: You do not need to sign up for Suzy Quilts sew alongs. You simply sew along with us!
- Sewing questions: You've got questions, we've got answers! The best place to ask your technical sewing questions Suzy Quilts Patterns Facebook group. The main purpose of sew alongs is to answer questions that pop up specifically when making the Butterfly Garden pattern, so don't ever worry about asking a "stupid" question. They don't exist!
- Prizes: Aside from having a beautiful finished quilt top, you also can win weekly prizes by using #ButterflyGardenQuiltSA in the captions of your posts on Instagram. More details on that are at the bottom of this post.
- Discounts: Get 25% off longarm quilting from Jenn B Quilts and Trace Creek Quilting on your Butterfly Garden quilt from now through the end of August 2023.
Butterfly Garden Quilt Sew Along Schedule
- Week 1, June 16: Gather fabric
Sponsor: Crimson Tate - Butterfly Garden Quilt Kit featuring Tilda Chambray
IG LIVE - @suzyquilts: Join me on Instagram to chat about fabric and color Tuesday, June 20, 2023 at 2PM CT
- Week 2, June 23: Cut Fabric
Sponsor: Jenn B Quilts - throw size quilting
- Week 3, June 30: Sew HSTs and Four Patches
Sponsor: DuckaDilly - $100 gift card AND Sarah Hearts - Four sets of labels
- Week 4, July 7: Assemble Blocks
Sponsor: Trace Creek Quilting - throw size quilting
IG LIVE - @suzyquilts: Join me on Instagram for a sewing demo and to chat about different ways to quilt your finished quilt top, July 11, 2023 at 2PM CT
- Week 5, July 14: Assemble the quilt top
Sponsor: Aurifil - Best Selection Box including 45 small spools of 50 wt. thread!
Butterfly Garden Quilt Supplies
- Butterfly Garden quilt pattern
- Fabric as shown in the chart below
- Basic quilting supplies - Must-Have Quilting Tools: Secrets to the Best Sewing Toolbox
If You Are New to Quilting...
I'm so glad you're here! This is a fantastic pattern for you and a sew along is the perfect way to explore, learn and grow your quilting skills. I have more resources for you that are helpful and quick to read.
Week 1 Assignment: Pick Fabric
It's possible I say this at some point in every Week 1 post, but y'all, I had a LOT of fun tossing fabric around for this quilt! There are so many options and somehow they're all good! If you don't believe me, I will retrace my steps and show you.
Because I found way too many beautiful fabric options, and I don't have time to make 20 quilts, I need you to tell me your favorite fabric pull in the comments!
Tip #1: Look at quilt examples.
In a previous post found here, I show 18 different Butterfly Garden examples. Some are scrappy and some are simple. Some are bright and some are subtle. Some have light backgrounds and some have dark backgrounds. This is your time to get a general idea of what you like.
Tip #2: Play with your fabric!
Give yourself at least 15 minutes of uninterrupted time to play around with fabric combinations. Some of them you'll instantly love and some will need some fine-tuning. Have fun with it! Now come with me while I mess around with my fabric stash.
When I first designed this quilt pattern I kept thinking how beautiful a yellow Butterfly Garden quilt would be. I made a yellow Shining Star quilt last summer during that sew along and it's one of my favorite quilts to date!
But because butterflies like to flutter around green spaces, I added some fabulous teal shades to my yellow fabric pile. Here's what I came up with...
OK major yum. I love it already, but it had only been 30 seconds and I had gifted myself 15 minutes so I better keep playing.
My next thought was that I should substitute the solid teal fabrics for printed teal fabrics. I had this Teal Thoughts Color Master bundle from Art Gallery Fabrics that would be perfect.
Oh! I should also note that the yellow fabrics I was working with were the Gold Leaf Color Master bundle from Art Gallery Fabrics.
OK ok ok ok. NOW we're cookin' with some gas! Typically I wouldn't pull all printed fabric for a quilt because I like to loosely follow the 50/50 ratio of prints to solids (or blenders) for a quilt. This is my personal preference and not a hard and fast rule.
These fabrics are just for the butterfly wings (HSTs) and butterfly bodies (Four Patches), so I can go wild with them knowing I will balance them out with background fabric.
Note: "Blenders" are printed fabrics that read as solids. For example, in the teal fabric pile above, the second fabric from the top is considered a blender. Even though it has a design printed on it, the design is subtle enough that from about 6 ft. away you can't clearly see it.
So now that I know I like yellow and teal together, what if I changed the bright teal for muted teal? Hmm...
I don't like that as much, but I am digging the muted teal. I have a weakness for muted colors. My next move is to take out the yellow and throw in some light lavender and peach fabrics.
Color Theory Note: If you are familiar with the color wheel and basic color theory, you already know that red and green are complementary colors – meaning they are opposites on the color wheel. Christmas colors, baby!
This same rule applies to all shades of those colors. You may not think about light pink/peach as complementary to light green/blue, but they are! That's why they look so fabulous together.
I love this dark dusty floral print I'm holding, but it may be too dark for the rest of the fabric pull. Let's see what it looks like with something else...
OK that muted teal and cream fabric blends better, but I miss the dark floral. Maybe I can use it for the Four Patches! Ooooh! That would look nice.
After playing around with fabrics for the Butterfly Wings and Butterfly Bodies, I decided it was time to introduce some background options.
This tiny strawberry fabric was love at first sight. The scale and the colors are perfection! It's called Berry Drizzle by Amy Sinibaldi for Art Gallery Fabrics.
Just for fun, what would it look like if I took out the pinks and only used muted teal...
OK, now what if I unmuted the teal and went back to the highly saturated teals of yore?
OK yummy yum, but I miss the pink. In my stash I have a Blossoming Mood FQ bundle. This is a bundle made up of PURE solids all from the same hue. I love having these bundles on hand because they help me quickly pick and pull colors.
Oh wow. These colors sing! They also really make the strawberries pop in a cute way.
I swapped out the bright fabrics for another pull of muted fabrics and it's interesting how the strawberry background fabric looks more muted too now. Either of these pulls could work. It just comes down to my preference. Hmm...
Because pink is one of my favorite colors, sometimes I like to challenge myself to not use it — just to see what else comes up. Below I took out some of the pink and subbed in light toasty hues found in a couple of the muted green prints.
My 15 minutes were almost over, so I needed to shake things up. Another original idea I had with this Butterfly Garden pattern was a light green background. Something that evoked a memory I have of laying in a meadow, a breeze gently swayed the tall grasses around me, and a butterfly flits across my line of vision.
This background fabric below is called Matcha. It's one of my 20 PURE solid fabrics coming out this August with Art Gallery Fabrics! I'm obsessed with this color and actually, sipping a matcha latte right now. Mmmm.
These burnt sienna and toast shades are pretty sweet with the light green. I wonder what they would look like with a darker background...
BAM! Totally different! Which one do you like better? This dark navy fabric is Nova, also from my PURE solids collection.
I only had a couple minutes left of my fabric picking time, so I needed to jump back to those original yellows. Was I still into them??
Right before the buzzer I did a lightning round of different background fabrics with the muted teal. Nova, Cerulean, then Shrimpy (more colors from my solids collection.) Oh my, this just made the decision even harder! I need your help in the comments!! What do I do?
Week 1 Sponsor & Prize
Don't want to pick your own fabrics? Our week one sponsor has you covered! The kind folks at Crimson Tate will send one lucky winner a Butterfly Garden Quilt Kit featuring Tilda Chambray. Look at how beautiful this quilt is!
How to Win
- Post a pic to Instagram. The photo prompt for Instagram this week is to post an introduction pic or a picture of your fabric. Use #ButterflyGardenQuiltSA in the caption.
- You must have a public Instagram profile to participate.
- Each photo posted is an entry and you can enter as many times as you want in a single week. Once the week is over, those posts do not count in the next week's giveaway. Every week we start fresh.
- Your photo must be posted between Friday, June 16 and Friday, June 23. The winner will be picked randomly from all qualifying posts and announced at approximately 4:00 p.m. on the 23rd. Good luck!