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Summer Sunrise Quilt: Introduction

As a New Jersey native, summer for me has always started with Memorial Day weekend and gone through Labor Day weekend. It’s a time for relaxing, taking long weekends and of course going down the shore.


Sketch pattern for Summer Sunrise Quilt

The design for the Summer Sunrise (or Sunset for anyone on the west coast) Quilt came to me over the winter. It was a long, cold, icy winter this year and I couldn’t keep my thoughts from drifting to warmer weather. For me nothing says summer better than being down the shore with the beach, boardwalk and an uninterrupted view of the water.


I sketched out several different versions of this quilt. Some had a beach blanket lined sand, others included a kitschy boardwalk, and one tried to be a strange combo of both. Ultimately I settled on a sunrise at the beach. Why a sunrise you ask? No, it has nothing to do with enjoying watching the sunrise when I am down the shore, rather I wanted to include a lot of warm welcoming colors, and I can’t help but think of the sun rising over the ocean.


With the design I took a little bit of a Impressionistic approach going for the look and feel of the shore, without trying to recreate a realistic design based on a particular beach. The basic blocks are actually common blocks that beginner quilters all know including pinwheel, rail and hourglass. Paired with some strip piecing, and a wide range of colors the blocks become a beautiful landscape.


This summer I am sharing the pattern with all of you as part of a quilt-along. Each week I will post a new set of instructions, starting this Monday, Memorial Day. The final instructions will be posted Labor Day weekend. I hope you enjoy following along and please post any questions you have.


For anyone who wants to get a head start and have all of your fabric ready for Monday I am including a supply list here. Please keep in mind that I am one of those people who likes to have a little extra material (nothing worse than running out of fabric when you only have to cut out two more squares), so if you want to do this out of your stash and don’t have quite enough you may still be able to use the fabric.


Fabrics for Quilt: From the top down: Sky Blue, Purple, Red, Orange, Yellow. From left to right: Medium Green, Light Green, Tan (Sand), White, Light Blue, Medium Blue and Dark Blue.

There are three basic sections of the quilt when looking at colors: beach, water and sky. Altogether you will need 12 different colors of fabric. I chose primarily batiks because the colors have a little more depth. When working out the colors I recommend starting with the blues since there are more blues than any other color. And don’t get discouraged if it takes pulling out several different fabrics, I went through 4 different blues before I found one I liked for the sky.


For the sky:

¼ yd yellow

¼ yd orange

¼ yd red

¾ yd purple

1 yd sky blue


For the beach:

1 yd tan (for the sand)

¼ yd light green

¼ yd medium green


For the water:

¼ yd white (a white with blue flecks will work really well)

1 yd light blue

2 yd medium blue

2 yd dark blue


Have fun finding your fabrics this weekend, I would love to see what everyone selects! You can share in our comments section of tag us social media using @createdesignmake365 or #summersunriseqal

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