A mystery quilt is a quilt that remains a mystery until the very end. That means that you don’t get a pattern of the quilt you will be making.
Every year my favorite designer Bonnie Hunter (Quiltville) starts a mystery quilt. Everybody all over the world can sew along for free.
How does it work?
The mystery Bonnie Hunter publishes starts somewhere in October.
Her first blog is introducing the name, size and the colors she uses and also tools (like special rulers) that will be used.
After that all participants can go shopping (or diving into their stash) to gather all required fabrics. It is really fun to see the fabric choices of participants in the Quiltville Facebook group.
On the Friday after the American Thanksgiving (Black Friday) the first clue is released: a little piece of the pattern. It gives information on which colors will be used for this part and how many small blocks (units) we have to sew, including a complete tutorial of that part of the pattern. Each unit could be different, like four patches or half square triangles etc.
We will be sewing pieces of fabric together, but have no idea what the quilt looks like until the top is finished.
After that every Friday a new clue is released until all parts of the pattern have been published.
Only Bonnie knows how many clues there are and when the final result is revealed.
The pattern is subject to copyright so nobody is allowed to share any details of the pattern, but we are allowed to direct people to the designer’s website where all information can be found for free until the end of January 2018. After that, the pattern can be purchased.
A mystery quilt is NOT a contest of who finishes first.
Just be sure to print or save all the clues as they will be removed from the website at a certain date (end of January 2018).
It is no problem if you cannot keep up with the number of units you have to sew each week. If the next clue is published and you have not finished the previous yet, put the previous one aside and start with the new one. That way you keep up with all the tips and tricks that are being shared in the Facebook group. You can return to the unfinished clues later, there is no time limit!
In 2017 the mystery is called “On Ringo Lake”.
The introduction has been published already. Bonnie shared:
- What the size of the finished quilt will be;
- What colors she used with example fabrics and paint chips for color samples;
The yardage (or equivalent in scraps/fat quarters) of fabric required;
The special rulers she will be using (these rulers are not mandatory, alternative methods will be shared too).
This year the colors are Aqua to turquoise, chocolate brown, coral to melon, and cream to beige.
Every participant can use any colors they like, as long as the contrast of the fabrics is the same as the contrast used in the pattern. This can be checked by comparing black/white pictures of both fabric choices.
It appears that the colors of this mystery are very close to the colors of a quilt project my sister is working on, three small wall hangings. She calls them “de doppen” (Dutch for caps) as two of them have small circles.
I decided to make a throw size quilt for my sister, to match the colors of her wall hangings. And because she is my sister the working name for my quilt will be “Zus van de doppen” (Dutch for sister of the caps).
As my chosen size will be different from the mystery pattern I cannot follow the numbers of the clues, but I can make a part of each clue and calculate the required units after the reveal.
Below a picture of the colors I will be working with. A creamy white will be added as well.
Very important checklist ;-)
- Fabrics ready?
- All rulers accounted for?
- Enough yarn and full bobbins?
- Working space tidy, cutting mat easy accessible?
- Sharp (new) blade in rotary cutter?
- Scissors handy?
- Sewing machine cleaned and oiled with a new needle?
- Extra needles available?
- Family and friends informed that they have to take care of themselves?
- Comfortable clothing washed?
- Do not disturb sign on the door?
Check – READY FOR THE FIRST CLUE!
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