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Get To Know: The Paint Lake Quilt


Paint Lake Quilt Pattern
Let me tell you about The Paint Lake Quilt… it all started with some good ol’ colour inspiration!
Check out the Paint Lake PDF and Paper Pattern here.
One day in 2018, I was with my mom at my local fabric store called KTR Sewing Centre. They had a big wall display of Kona fat quarters in the shop, and I was feeling very inspired by all of the deep, saturated colours. My mom encouraged me to just grab all of my favourites, which isn’t the way I normally work at all. Usually, I start first with a pattern design, and then play with the colourways afterwards.

I never felt liberated enough to just grab random fabrics and colours and casually place them wherever in a quilt design. I have always admired colourful and scrappy quilts, but found them overwhelming to try and create myself. And when I tried anything similar in the past, those projects felt like huge flops to me. 

But that day, this approach felt exciting and fun. So, I went through and picked out 18 different colours that I loved without having a clue what I was going to do with them once I brought them home!

Paint Lake Fat Quarter Stack

Paint Lake Fat Quarter Stack On Shelf

Then it hit me! Why not challenge myself to create a pattern design that feels like a scrappy quilt, without the need for improvisation, AND includes all 18 fat quarters? And that’s how the Paint Lake Quilt Pattern was born!

While designing the pattern, the words “curated random” consistently directed my thought process. I began by creating a simple square of each colour in Illustrator. Then, I started grouping similar colours into sets of three, changing the shape and placement to create some curation. 

I tossed around some design ideas with my husband, including these original concepts: 

Paint Lake Design Idea 1

Paint Lake Design Idea 2

Paint Lake Design Idea 3After playing around for a while, I finally felt good about the design and created the pattern’s cover quilt using all 18 fat quarters! 

Erin Holding Paint Lake Cover Quilt

Erin Holding Paint Lake Cover Quilt 2

Paint Lake Cover Quilt And Backing

Paint Lake Cover Quilt On Vintage Chair

Paint Lake Cover Quilt On Chair

The Kona Cotton colours I used were: 

Starting from a young age, I was always very interested in interior design. I had supportive and encouraging parents who gave me permission to redesign and redo my bedroom pretty much every year! They would give me a strict budget, but I would add some of my own allowance to get what I needed. I did a lot of the work myself, including spray painting, decoupaging, recovering and upcycling thrifted furniture. 

One of my favourite stops along my redecorating journeys was the wall of paint chips at the hardware store. I don’t know how to explain it other than it felt like a wall of endless possibilities! I would stand and stare at the chips, choose my favourite colours, and pair unlikely combinations together to see how they made me feel. It was SO exciting! 

To me, the Paint Lake pattern feels a lot like looking at that paint chip wall at the hardware store - lots of colours, with different shades in between! 

So, why the name “Paint Lake”? Paint Lake is a provincial park just outside Thompson, Manitoba. It has countless islands and bays, with colourful views of the grand northern landscape around every corner. I went camping there with my family a fews years ago on an incredible road trip! 

Erin And Chris At Paint Lake

I made a second version using an Essex Linen bundle put together by Cottoneer Fabrics and hand quilted it. 

Essex Linen Fabric Stack

Essex Linen Paint Lake

Hand Quilting Essex Linen Paint Lake Quilt

Essex Linen Paint Lake Quilt And Backing

Essex Linen Paint Lake Quilt Hanging On Wall

Next up, I made a mini-wall hanging version from my scrap bin! 

Erin Holding Mini Wall Hanging Paint Lake Quilt

Erin Holding Mini Wall Hanging Paint Lake Quilt 2

Once again, I had the privilege of working with pattern testers for the Paint Lake Quilt. Look at their stunning versions! 

Paint Lake Pattern Tester villageboundquilts

From Tiffany @villageboundquilts

Paint Lake Pattern Tester thestitchsaloon

From Claire @thestitchsaloon

Paint Lake Pattern Tester marmalademoodquilts

From Kasie @marmalademoodquilts

Paint Lake Pattern Tester penelopehandmade

From Jennifer @penelopehandmade

Paint Lake Pattern Tester lifewitheleanor

From Coby @lifewitheleanor

Paint Lake Pattern Tester sarai_hobbies

From Sarai @sarai_hobbies

Paint Lake Pattern Tester seamedtobe

From Robin @seamedtobe

Paint Lake Pattern Tester quiltsforallsparrows

From Rachel @quiltsforallsparrows

Paint Lake Pattern Tester lemonyquilts

From Emily @lemonyquilts

One day, my son Everett came to me and asked if I could make him his very own quilt. I agreed, of course, and he chose the Paint Lake pattern! I let him choose the colours he liked - with a little guidance from me! However, it's important to note, that my son is colourblind. So, when he began to choose colours from my fabric stash, it was no surprise that he chose only colours that he could see! 

He sure lucked out, because most of the fabrics he chose were the softest Pure Solids from Art Gallery Fabrics. 

Everett Paint Lake Quilt

I was supposed to attend QuiltCon 2020. I had registered for multiple lectures and workshops, including one with Carolyn Friedlander. 

But in the fall of 2019, I was diagnosed with cervical cancer that required major surgery. Because of my recovery after surgery, I sadly wasn’t able to attend QuiltCon. So, I took my refund money and purchased a half-yard bundle of the newly released Collection CF by Carolyn Friedlander fabric from Studio 39 Fabrics.

Once I was recovered and able to sew again, I made myself a Paint Lake Quilt using those gorgeous fabrics. I sent it off to Ma Tante Quilting to be longarm quilted. This special quilt now lives on my couch and we use it almost every single day! 

Collection CF Fabric

Collection CF Paint Lake Quilt Blocks Hanging

Collection CF Quilt

Collection CF Paint Lake Quilted

Collection CF Paint Lake Quilt Closeup

Check out the hashtags #paintlakequilt and #blanketstatementpatterns on Instagram to see hundreds of creative versions of the Paint Lake Quilt!

Are you a natural-born scrappy quilter or are you a little more hesitant like I was? Let me know in the comments! 


4 comments


  • Denise Dugal

    I absolutely love this! I love lots of colour and am particularly fond of strips and squares. I will definitely be making myself at least one. Looks like a good pattern for smaller, baby quilts too.


  • Karen Myers

    I love your inspirational story for Paint Lake Quilt. I am ordering the pattern and cant wait to find to make a awesome color combination. I have not done hand quilting so this will be a first. Thanks for sharing.


  • Betty-Anne

    When I saw the simplicity of the design and those amazing colours I absolutely fell in love with this quilt. Picking out the colours you were drawn to created a beautiful palette. I am currently cutting out the fabric to make my very own. Love the texture and softness of the linen look, hand quilted version.


  • Emily Wakefield

    Love your Paint Lake pattern & your choice of colors. Thank you for sharing.
    Emily


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