Our extended family does a Christmas draw every year. When I drew my cousin Anneliese this year, it felt like kismet. In addition to being related to me, Anneliese has always been a close and dear friend. She knows me maybe better than anyone else. Over the past year, she was my maid of honor – helping in  about a million ways with planning our wedding. She kept me calm through all the planning, craziness and festivity.  So what perfect timing that I would draw her that year and have the chance to spend some time giving back to such a true friend!

Anneliese is sweet and strong, and I wanted something that paid homage to this impressive balance. Given her style, I wanted to strike a balance between a classic look and clean, modern lines and colors. Inspired by Fresh Lemon’s quilt, I decided on an Arkansas Traveler pattern. Here’s an easy to follow tutorial from Freshly Pieced.

As I began to build the stars, I started to play around with the color palate of blue and purple, experimenting with all one color:

Arkansas Traveler Quilt by Pieced Together Quilts

Each star in a single color, switching back and forth:Arkansas Traveler Quilt by Pieced Together Quilts

By the time I pieced it all together, I finally settled on diagonal rows of blue in one direction and purple in the other. It was one of those decisions that you had to set out and look at for a long time before the right pattern emerged. In the end, I liked how the interlocking chains play a bit of a visual game with your eyes – popping out the lines made in a single color, the stars of blue and purple, and the stars created by the white space in between:  Arkansas Traveler Quilt by Pieced Together Quilts

Due to a miscalculation, I also had plenty of extra stars to spare, which allowed me to use the original pattern (solid blue and solid purple stars) on the back:Arkansas Traveler Quilt by Pieced Together Quilts Arkansas Traveler Quilt by Pieced Together Quilts