Nightingale Quilt - my Christmas version

I think I've lost track of how many Christmas quilts I've made this year, haha. And I have no regrets! When I was designing my Nightingale quilt pattern, I knew that I would make lots of versions of it! It's such a great pattern for solids and prints alike. Plus the fabric requirements are so easy-peasy, it's simple to just grab a bundle and get to work. Nightingale released around the same time that we released our signature Christmas bundle for 2020. If you missed it, we named it the Griswold bundle, after our favorite Christmas movie. haha. Christmas Vacation is a CLASSIC in the Lloyd house! Since there were 20 fat quarters in the bundle, I knew that I had to make a large throw Nightingale quilt with it!

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When I chose these fabrics, I really wanted a mixture of various textures, fabric manufacturers, designers, etc. It's kind of a modge-podge, which is really why I love it! Personally, I love traditional red and green Christmas themes. In particular, one of the fabrics (Roadster Red Spark) is super saturated and bright... it kind of gives off an edgy vibe, which was my inspiration for the entire pull. I also tied in some classic floral-y type prints (ya'll know I couldn't leave out my florals), then I added in a black and white checkered print, which is what set it off for me. The muted greens and shades of coral tone it all down....but collectively, this collections says "classic Christmas" to me.

*Note* The Griswold bundle is currently sold out, but we have a almost identical bundle, called Todd & Margo that would work as well.  It's 18 FQ, so if you use this to create a large throw Nightingale, you'd need to add 2 other fat quarters. It's the exact same as the Griswold bundle, except it's missing the two Candlelight wovens. Here are the fabrics that are in the Griswold bundle:

  • AGF - Evelyns Green Thumb
  • AGF - Tinted Blooms
  • AGF - Shepherd Market
  • AGF Eucalyptus
  • RSS - Candlelight Wovens Pine
  • AGF - Unruly Terrace Earth
  • AGF - Fresh Sage
  • RK - Seafoam Essex Yarn Dyed
  • RSS- Flurry Gift Wrap Mint
  • AGF - Be Merry
  • RK - Bone Manchester
  • RSS - Add it Up Khaki
  • AGF - Dance This Tango
  • AGF - Soulmate Blooms Silkroad
  • RSS - Candlelight Wovens Holiday Stripe
  • RSS - Flurry Spill Tangerine Dream
  • RSS - Speckled Metallic Festive
  • RSS - Metallic Roadster Red
  • AGF - Darling Echoes Red
  • RK - Crimson Manchester

AGF = Art Gallery Fabrics; RSS = Ruby Star Society; RK = Robert Kaufman

I really like the cutting for this pattern because it's easy to break up and come back to it if you need to. Once I got everything cut, I laid it all out so that I could see the pretty range of colors. Then I mixed and matched! This step is always my favorite!

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Once my pieces were cut, I started making my flying geese. Every time I've created this pattern, I've approached it a few different ways. I'll either create one block at a time.....which is perfect for instant gratification. Or, I'll create all of my flying geese, then all of my half square triangles, etc. This feels like it takes longer, but it's super nice to chain piece and focus on doing the same task over and over - which is what I did for this quilt!

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I didn't get any photos of my HSTs after I created them.... but aren't these flying geese cute?! 

Once all of my block pieces were constructed, assembling the blocks was SUPER quick. I'm pretty sure I made all of my blocks in one day! Then it was just a matter of deciding on a block arrangement that looked pretty. I'm not going to lie, this was so hard for me. I really wanted to evenly distribute the reds and greens, while also keeping the saturations of reds/corals in mind. I rearranged everything probably 50 times before I landed on this. Oh, and it probably didn't help that I have this rule that I only put my favorite blocks in the corners. haha. That constricted my options a bit, but I really like doing this for whatever reason. I think because when I look at a quilt, my eyes often go to the edges and corners, so I really want the prettiest blocks to live there. Am I the only one that does this?!

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Originally I had planned to quilt this myself, but life got a little crazy, so I decided to send it to my friend Andrea of Walker Quilt Co. I told her that I wanted "organic paisleys" and boy did she deliver! She free-motion quilted this!!! Can you believe it?!

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Do you remember the binding that I used on my Cover Knitted Star quilt? OH it was so perfect. It's called "Little Tree" by Lella Boutique. It has a very distinct "candy cane" vibe and I'm low-key obsessed with it. It practically became extinct over the last few months, but I was SO excited when I stumbled upon an almost full bolt of it at my favorite quilt shop (Angelwings in Southport, NC). In fact, I bought the entire bolt of it....haha. Peter thought I was crazy, but I really had to seize the opportunity! And I'm so glad that I did. I'll now have enough of this fabric for my many Christmas quilts to come.....although, someone pointed out on IG that I could also use it for Valentines day and Independence day, which is such a great point! I need to branch out and create other holiday quilts that aren't Christmas themed. Maybe one day! haha.

I used my new Janome Continental M7 for the binding and it was such a dream. 

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I used Winterberry Mist by Art Gallery Fabrics for the backing. I also used it for my Cover Knitted Star quilt...it's one of those fabrics that's so classic and versatile. It's a smaller scale print, which I normally don't like to use as backings, but it's so cute, I always make an exception for this one. 

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Overall, I really love how it turned out. My one regret is that I didn't pay attention to directional fabrics. I wrote a blog post that explains how to use directional fabrics with this pattern, but I didn't write that until AFTER I made this quilt. It would've been nice to have all of the stripes going in the same direction, but it's also not the end of the world. As I always say....it adds characters. ;)

Otherwise, I'm SO happy with how it turned out. I haven't decided yet if this will be a gift, or if we will list it in our shop....for now it's neatly folded on our quilt ladder in our living room so that we can enjoy it these next few days before Christmas. :)

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