The Story of Serenity.

It has been a long time since I have made an effort to keep up my blog.  There are so many reasons why it's easier to just leave it alone, but I do miss writing about my projects.  I will have my blog posts on my website from here on out. The posts used to be on a blogger account, but trying to get these posts to connect between the two sites seems impossible for me right now.  In the end, this will be easier for me.  

The instant gratification of Instagram and Facebook have made my posts seem so impersonal to me, so for those of you who are looking for more info on my quilts, then this is the place to be.  I  will go back over the quilts I have missed writing about and share the info on the projects on this blog.  I hope you will enjoy the posts as much as I will enjoy writing them. 

First off is Serenity. This quilt is epic and has a lovely story to go along with it. 


In October 2018 I was teaching to a quilting group in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. This group of ladies were so fun and engaging. This trip was my 4th and final time teaching in Canada when I was traveling to teach quilting.  While I was there I mentioned how much I love quilting needle turn appliqué quilts. I don't love doing appliqué myself, but I love quilting them. 

Sometime during the workshop a lady by the name of Tammy gifted me her needle turn appliqué quilt. I couldn't believe it, but quilters really are the sweetest people. She genuinely wanted me to have this quilt and wanted me to be able to "play" with the quilting. I certainly did just that! 

Serenity by Judi Madsen

I  have since learned the quilt top is a from the pattern, Calendar Basket by Brandywine Design. Tammy did not do the extra bit of appliqué in the border, but left those empty which made for a perfect empty space for a secondary quilting design.

Serenity by Judi Madsen

As you can see, I took advantage of the empty space and filled the border with an incredible geometric quilting design.  I cannot tell you how much fun and time consuming it was to come up with this quilting design, all of which is explained in my book, Serenity

Serenity by Judi Madsen

The large negative space quilt blocks that were in between each of the basket blocks made an area for a beautiful quilting design as well.  I  based my design on my "Clover block" from a quilt named "Serenity" I  made back in 2010 or so.  That specific design has been turned into a digitized design, but I did not do any computerized work on this quilt. 

Serenity by Judi Madsen

I used two layers of quilt batting to make the quilting designs stand out. I also used a 60wt glide thread to quilt the entire top.  I really like the 60wt thread because it is the perfect weight to do dense and detailed quilting without looking too heavy. 

Serenity by Judi Madsen

The quilt top took me over 100 hours of quilting to complete and once I was finished with it, I realized I needed to make a book with the quilting instructions. So, I  took the clover design block, and turned that into an appliqué block.  The quilt then became Serenity and the options to make several sizes are available in my book

Serenity by Judi Madsen

Serenity (wall hanging) is just the right sized quilt for those of you looking to amp up your quilting skills without taking on a huge quilting job.  I know several of you have already made this quilt, since I released this book in 2023. In addition to the large border quilting designs, I included the fun curved border design and curved quilting designs in the blocks for the smaller quilt. 

Serenity by Judi Madsen

I used my QuickMarkRuler, my QuickMarkCurvedRuler, and my A1 longarm straight ruler to get all the lines just right in this quilt. I used a purple water/air soluble marker to mark all the lines, but any marker that works for you will do the trick.

Serenity by Judi Madsen

This project was a labor of love for me.  I enjoyed the designing, quilting, and finally writing of the book.  It is a very detailed and colorful pattern that will help you bring your free motion quilting to the next level.  I  hope you enjoy making the quilt as much as I did. 

Isn't it amazing what a gift can do?  Thank you Tammy for helping me push my own quilting to the next level by gifting me an incredible quilt.   

May 09, 2024 by judi madsen
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Susan Rothrock

Susan Rothrock said:

WOW! doesn’t do these quilts justice. Exceptionally beautiful and intricate quilting of both quilts. the Serenity block doesn’t overwhelm or compete with the applique blocks-a difficult task to accomplish. I will be ordering the book! Thank you for sharing the story and evolution of the design. I’m relatively new to your posts.

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