Book Review

Southwestern Desert Medallion Quilt

I’ll admit that one of my favorite parts about working at Urban Spools is the moment when a box of new fabric or notions arrives at the store. About a year ago, I opened one of these packages and discovered Nancy Purvis’s debut book Quilting from Every Angle.  Flipping through the pages, I was struck by the beautiful photography and bold graphic quilts she produced for this book. I was in love with each and every one of her patterns and knew the question wouldn’t be if I would make something from this book–but how to choose only a couple!


My first foray into this book was the “Concordia” quilt that I made last Christmas for my brother. I love this updated twist on the classic flying geese quilt patterns. The straightforward paper piecing in this quilt is a great way for beginners to gain practice and add a sophisticated look to the quilt top.


With how much I loved the outcome of the “Concordia” quilt, I couldn’t stop with just one quilt from this book. So a few months later, I settled on the “Desert Medallion” quilt as my next project.

The Example “Desert Medallion” quilt from Quilting From Every Angle

While working at Urban Spools, there is constant chatter amongst the staff about our current and dream projects. Knowing I’m someone who often sets lofty sewing goals and doesn’t always follow through, I did my best to convince everyone else working in the shop to hold me accountable to finish the quilt before I went back to school! Falling in love with this quilt just as much as I have, they all agreed to make versions of the quilt alongside me! One of the most fun aspects of this process was seeing how everyone’s individual taste shows through with their fabric choices!

Maria’s Version
Michelle’s Version

I loved making the Desert Medallion quilt because it allowed me to highlight some of my favorite fabrics and especially, with most fabrics using a yard or less, I was able to pull most of the prints from my stash. The flying geese border is also a great place to use up scraps, or in Michelle’s case, utilise some clever cheater prints like the Lollies prints by Jen Kingwell.

My Version of the “Desert Medallion” Quilt

I’m someone who is often drawn to how different brightly colored blender prints work together in a quilt and the balance between saturated and low-volume prints. This quilt allowed me to play around with different color combinations and their placement in borders of different patterns and sizes.


After I finished the first couple sections, I realised the color combination paired with the piecing of the quilt was going in a Southwestern direction, which is very on-trend with the youths these days, and decided to embrace it. I finished the quilt off with a horse shoe print binding just to drive my theme home.


Coming in at just under 60 x 60, the finished size makes it the perfect lap quilt and looks great draped over any couch, as exemplified by my lovely roommate, who looks as happy as a clam to be surrounded by cozy quilted things. However, if you want to make this quilt for a bed, it would be easy to add a couple more borders to expand it out to a twin size.

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Make sure to add Quilting from Every Angle to the top of your list of new quilt books because with its stunning designs and easy-to-follow instructions, it’s sure to offer inspiration to every quilter who picks it up.



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