Hello quilting friends! I’ve had some requests for information on the barn wood backdrop for my “Moda Love Charm Quilt.” While I can’t take credit for the construction, I can give you the scoop on how and why we put it together.
I’m a fusser. I like putzing around in my house and making it pretty and inviting for the people I love. My little family has come to live with the annoying fact that Mom likes to rearrange often, and repurpose “junk” to make it cute. They are good sports.
I will admit that if there is something that doesn’t look quite right to my eye, it will drive me crazy until I resolve it. I rarely go out and purchase something to fix the decorating dilemma. I usually try to make something myself or move things around. Such is the case with a troublesome hallway in my home. It’s a high traffic spot. It’s narrow. It’s dark. It’s totally uninspiring. Ugh.
When I made my Moda Love Charm Quilt last year using “Somerset” by Fig Tree & Company, I thought, “Well THERE it is! The perfect quilt to hang in that UGH hallway.” The colors are rich yet bright, the pattern is so pleasing, and it’s just the right size for the spot! (This is a free pattern from United Notions and comes in three sizes based on your choice of precut: layer cake, charm pack or mini charm pack.) Here it is as pictured just back from the quilters, waiting for some binding. (I added borders, so my quilt is 36” x 36”. The original pattern with no borders yields a 32" x 32” quilt.)
So I sewed up a sleeve and hung up the quilt. Well, hmmm . . . the hallway stopped being UGH, but as far as I was concerned it only moved up a few notches to “Ehhh . . . okay.” And since I’m putting all my cards on the table, that little light switch was really bugging me too.
I spent a couple weeks living with this slightly improved hallway, and then it came to me. What I needed was some type of frame, something chocolaty brown that pulled out the rich brown star points in the center of the quilt. I emailed our family friend, Dan, who is both a teacher and a talented carpenter/builder. I explained my situation, told him what I was envisioning and asked if I could purchase some barn wood from him. He said he would stop by that evening and take a look.
Dan did stop by that evening alright. He stopped by with exactly what I had in my mind already built! He really is an artist, and he totally appreciated my need to make this quilt pop in this troublesome spot. What a guy!
I took the barn wood backdrop downstairs and set up shop, deciding that a warm cinnamon gel stain would provide the perfect finish.
My husband helped me make a cleat so that we could hang it on the wall properly and remove it as needed. (Measuring at 46" x 46”, the piece is quite heavy.) The cleat also allows us to pull the frame forward a couple inches to turn the light switch on and off . . . an easy solution to hiding that switch!
|Dan cut the barn wood to length and connected the pieces using two vertical rails.|
My husband and I added the cleat to the top so it would hang securely.
I feel quite happy now when I look at this hallway as I’m buzzing from the kitchen to the laundry room. I'm pretty sure this decorating project has drastically improved the lives and well-being of the people I live with . . . well maybe not, but it's a darn good excuse to quilt and decorate!
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