I’ve been meaning to dive into my Prince Charming stash for a while, and had various convoluted ideas of how I was going to use it, including madly complicated patterns with such precise piecing that, quite frankly, I’d have gone cross-eyed trying to make the points all match up!  Then along came Jennifer with her Modern Mini Challenge, and Angela with her fabulous picture based minis.  In my mind, I happily came up with a plan for this, with one of the frog princes fussy cut, sitting on a lily pad in the middle of a pond surrounded by trees, dreaming of becoming a king, with thought bubbles containing crowns and kisses getting bigger above his head, and a princess at the edge of the pond ready to swim out to him.  And then I woke up and realised that there was no way on earth, given the fabric I had in my stash, and the shops I had available to try and mix and match colours and even the type of fabrics available, that I could achieve this mini.  I may yet get back to it, but I’m not holding my breath.

Not one to let an idea die completely, when I saw the quilt on the cover of Jessica Levitt’s Modern Mix Book another couple of synapses fired made a dull thud, and I thought maybe I could abandon the whole tree-surrounded pond idea, and just have my frog prince at the bottom of an off-centre strip in the middle of a big quilt, with the thought bubbles getting bigger moving up the quilt.  In the meantime, I had received a fabric order from US shop owner, Karen Gray, where she had included an old copy of a magazine that happened to feature her shop (and very nice it looked too).  A week or two later I was looking for some reading material for a bath (although historically this has not boded well for the ongoing circulation numbers of any magazines I’ve read in there!) and picked up the included magazine to have a read through.  In it there was an entire page advert for Prince Charming, and on it were a number of circles that had been graphically created to represent the circles in the taffy line, using a mixture of the fabrics from the line.  Hmm, I thought, maybe my prince’s thought bubbles need to work this way.  Next up was how to get the crowns in.  Now funnily enough, I got an answer to this when I was hunting for a crown for something else entirely!  Tula Pink herself had created a pattern with crowns on it specifically for this line, and had used covered buttons to help create the effect of balls on the top of each crown point.  I had a thunk about this too, and used her overlapping triangles idea to create my crowns, although I didn’t want any buttons on what I was intending to be a big snuggly quilt.  Finally, along came Kelly with her QAL and I finally needed to make this dream a reality!

Fallen asleep yet? ;o)  Okay, we’re nearly at the end of this long-winded tale, I promise!  I decided what I really needed to do was actually make 2 quilts, one with the indigo and honey colourways, and the other with the coral and olive ones.  I hunted and hunted and managed to work out what solids I needed for the rest of the quilt and the backing of my bubbles.  On Jessica’s very sophisticated quilt, she had the same charcoally coloured backing for her entire quilt, including the bit behind the circles, but I wanted a paler colour to allow the prince and the bubbles/crowns to stand out, so for the indigo/honey one I went with Kona navy for the main body of the quilt, and Kona bone for the bubble strip.  On the coral/olive one, I went with Kona celery for the main body and Kona flesh for the bubble strip.  I have some of the Moda extra wide dotty backing in aqua on order from Brenda, and I’ll see how it matches the indigo/honey one, otherwise I’ll probably do a pieced backing with strips of the leftover bubble strip solid, the main body solid and some Banana that I ordered in as an extra solid just for this purpose.  Good job Mandy had a sale on, given how many yards of solids I’ve had to buy to make these giant quilts o.O

Anyway, here’s how my playing is going so far, with the flesh strip cut to size for the quilt.  The circles are just paper right now while I decide on a definite arrangement, and I’ve numbered them all, and photographed the layout so that I can recreate them all in the end!  In fact I’ve now also outlined them with a Frixxion pen, just to be on the safe side… (please ignore any peripheral mess, it’s hard to find 2 1/2 yards of clear space!)

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