Witch's Cupboard Quilt

Check out my new Halloween quilt...The Witch's Cupboard Quilt! 

Every once in a while, one of my gazillion quilt ideas actually gets made into a quilt. This is one of the lucky ones and I love how it turned out. The process of taking a random idea and turning it into a quilt is something I have done so many times now, I don't really even think about it. But just in case anyone is interested, I will tell you how this one came to be. 

I have always loved seeing little potion bottles as Halloween decorations- but I don't actually own any. A few times I have bought some labels from Etsy and turned my Jarritos and Root Beer bottles into fun Halloween party drinks. But a couple years ago I decided a collection of potion bottles would make a cute quilt. So I started sketching...

I found this photo of the first sketch in the camera roll on my phone. Just a rough sketch. I took a picture so I could load it into Inkscape (graphic design program similar to Adobe Illustrator). Once I had it in Inkscape, I traced some of the bottles, but realized it would take me a while. When I had 4 bottles done I decided to use them to make a little pillow: 

I loved the pillow - and so did my girls. (They all fought over who got to keep it on their bed...the oldest won). Since the pillow turned out so well, I wanted to keep going with the quilt. Over the next couple years I kept designing more bottles and labels. 

I had way too much fun coming up with all the labels - I wanted them to be fun, not too spooky and things a cute little witch might actually use... like Wasp Wax for waxing her broom handles (instead of Beeswax- get it?!) and Dragon's Breath perfume. I was feeling pretty clever by the end! ;) 

It took me a long time to actually start making the quilt- mostly because I was originally going to make the bottles in more of a rainbow of colors:

This is one of my original mock-ups...this color scheme seemed like a good idea at the time, but when I laid the fabrics out...

...I did not love it. At all. When that happens, I stall out until I can come up with something I like...because I have learned through sad experience that if I don't love it laid out, I won't love it sewn together! So I let it sit on the floor for a few weeks until I came up with a different color scheme.
During this part, some of the bottles got moved around to more evenly distribute the colors and sizes. I also changed up some of the corks - like adding the flame cork to the Dragon's Breath bottle.

Getting closer!! I liked this limited, more Halloween-y color scheme so much better. Adding the black and white prints just made this design for me...once I added those I knew I would love it!

I finished the quilt top on Halloween and then ran out of steam. So I put it away for a while. Then I pulled it back out mid-April and quilted it. The background (in the black sections) was quilted with a pantograph called Charlotte's Web by Anne Bright Designs. Then I just quilted around all the shapes and labels and did a simple woodgrain design (just made it up) in the wood sections. 

Once the quilt was all done, I got working on the pattern. In my opinion, the most exciting part about the pattern is that the label fabric is included! This makes it so much easier to complete the quilt! To make the labels for the pillow, I used the method I had been using forever: printing the label designs out on paper and tracing them onto fabric with a fabric pen. Effective, but super time consuming. So once I finished the design for the quilt, I decided to print the labels at Spoonflower. Best. Decision. Ever. They were perfect and so much easier!

Thanks for reading! 

If you want to make your own Witch's Cupboard Quilt the paper pattern is available HERE.