Red and Blue Little Three Creeks Quilt
You find a copy of the Little Three Creeks quilt pattern in my shop.
Little Three Creeks is a modern quilt pattern inspired by a family hike from my childhood. This pattern is more of a minimalist take on the mountain range. I especially love the mirrored mountains on the bottom, which means no matter which way you hold it, it's the right way up. This version of the quilt was my first attempt at this design. I had roughly drawn up a design in summer 2020 while we were hiking every week in Central Oregon. You can read more about my inspiration for this quilt here.
Choosing my fabrics
I wasn't quite sure which fabrics to use for this first version. I went with my mom to our local quilt shop, The Stitchin' Post, and poked around a bit looking for smaller print fabrics which were in bold colors. I really didn't even have a color palette in mind. But the fabrics I chose all work together and gave the look I was was hoping for.
First, I found Migration North from the Earthen collection by Katarina Roccella for Art Gallery Fabrics. This is the fabric I used for the creek. The fabric actually has small birds all over it, so maybe it was a better choice for the sky, but I just loved the color and the small pattern on it was just what I was looking for.
Next, I looked for my mountain fabrics. I wanted to do two different fabrics for this version. In my other version the mountains are all different colors. But I wanted to add depth to the pattern by making the two side mountains one fabric and the back mountain a different fabric. The pattern is compatible with both variations.
First, I chose the middle mountain, mostly because I love the redish, rusty color. This fabric is also by Art Gallery Fabrics. Horizon Mirage Clay from Spirited by Sharon Holland was the perfect fabric. Actually, this whole collection is so beautiful! I thought about putting the horse fabric from this line on the back of the quilt. The whole line has the most beautiful colors and designs, especially if you are going for a more rustic, western look.
For the other two mountain fabrics I used Chorus Mirror Terra from the Virtuosa line by Bari J. for Art Gallery Fabrics. It matched the other clay colored fabric very well. But has much more of a pattern on it than the other two. But I thought it completed the look I was going for.
The background is an inexpensive cream colored cotton fabric. It was only $5/yard, but the quality is very nice and it is so soft. And I mean, you can't beat the price, am I right? I decided an off white or cream color would be the best for the background fabric. It's hard to tell from the images, but the main fabrics are more of a muted color.
It's so hard when making a quilt with lots of prep work like half square triangles, especially when I am the one creating it, I just can't wait to see how it's going to look. I second guess myself the whole assembly process. The seams in this version don't match the construction suggested in the pattern. It took a while to decide what the best way to write the pattern and which construction process would be best.
The mountains came together easy enough. I was able to use this version to decide the quilt needed to be a couple rows wider to even out the whole look.
I went through some different debates with myself. I couldn't decide if I wanted a strip between the creek and the mountains. I finally decided I liked the separation. I also couldn't decide if I wanted the extra white space between the mountains and the edge of the quilt. Eventually I decided the mountains top looked better with these extra strips.
An experiment and learning a new skill
Since this quilt was a bit of an experiment from the beginning I decided to also experiment with the batting. Learning new skills is always a good thing, sometimes I just have to be brave enough to try. In this case, I finally decided to put those scraps of batting lying around to use.
Piecing my batting turned out to be much easier than I thought. It just takes time and at this point in the quilt making process I never want to spend time piecing batting, I'm just in a hurry to see the finished product. However, using scraps of batting is a great way to recycle instead of ditching them in the garbage. It also saves money, think around $20/quilt. I'm thinking I will write up a tutorial on this in the future.
I chose some solid Kona fabric for the backing that I had lying around and decided to quilt this one myself. I used the snake stitch (I have no idea if this is the name of the stitch). The rows are 1 inch apart. I love how it wrinkled up after the wash.
The binding fabric is the same as the two side mountains. I like how the design on the fabric blends it with the mountains and adds some pizzazz to the edge of the quilt. The best part is the batting looks completely normal and you cannot tell I pieced it.
This quilt already has a new home. My daughter has a friend in need who we were very concerned about freezing this winter. She refused to come stay with us during some especially cold nights. So we sent this quilt home with her, as well as a couple cans of soup. Winter is a great time to give extra quilts to those in need.